initial thoughts re society of query writing #1

In an environment of unknown links and information, the practice of searching is becoming a key for opening up the links into the desired information. Like the strategic importance of waterways and roads, which gave birth to settlements and businesses which attempted to exploit locations for the benefit of the inhabitants, search engines are the strategic entry points to the network that is the Web, Because search engines like Google will not be there if there if they were not profitable, quires are taken as reflections of and for users desires. These desires are then seen as data that can be used in the further exploitation of users via self reflection. Reflecting the information that best matches people’s desires. Each individual, and their own desired reflection.
These reflections however are mixed with the desires of the search engine’s operator/owner, and how They think it is best to reflect users search results. Hence, for example, google has various filters, some visible – eg “parental” – some are less visible – eg “porn” – some are commercial – eg make X more visible because its good for google – and some are political. Google, in order to continue its dominance as a “gateway” to the web, to continue its being most people’s 1st point of entry to the web – has to Appear as if it both reflects what is “out there” and the desires of its users.
In this sense, both commercial, and non commercial search engines – such as Yacy – attempt to make visible that which might match both their moral sense of being and the desire expressed by the search queries..
We have developed a search engine that is built upon the language of search query algorithms and visibility. Using the intersection between search and visibility, the code questions both itself and its users by constantly bringing up the least visible results. These shadow/dark bits of information are elements made both by time and clicks – hence a result that Used to Be visible and liked, might become, in time dark and in the shadows.
By allowing the once popular results to have possible come-backs, and once dark and shadowy information, to have its moments for visibility, the search engine algorithm produces questions that may be taken into wider areas than mere information queries – however, artistically, it is still using the aesthetic language of search. A language which, to have a sense of how to live in an environment of unknown links and information – there might be some relevance in learning.
Through recorded conversations made specifically for the publication, Phil + Aharon will explore the ideas that make the search engine an artistic practice in itself. We will use the works it spawned – eg shadow spot – possible implementations, social and artistic relevance, and so on..

http://networkcultures.org/wpmu/query/2013/05/07/call-for-contributions-society-of-the-query-reader/

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