Touch Data Body X tries to find the soul of the machine by expressing the idea that computer malfunctions expose something for which you were not prepared. In this interactive media installation, VJ Um Amel has written code in Processing 2.2.1 that enables users to manipulate frequency modulation of the source photograph for the metal print, Data Body of a Cyborg / سايبورغ مجسّم من البيانات.

// FM – frequency modulator with color channels
// 2018 VJ Um Amel,

// Frequency modulation and demodulation of the image
// process goes in following way:
// – convert RGB into desired colorspace (GS – grayscale)
// For every channel
// – modulate signal
// – quantize and dequantize signal (if quantval > 0)
// – demodulate signal using derivative method
// – apply 3 lowpass filters in a chain to remove carrier (if possible)
// Combine channels and convert back to RGB

// How to Interact:
// * move mouse X axis – change the carrier wave frequency
// * move mouse Y axis – change bandwidth
// * click mouse to fix setup (click again to release)
// * press N to negate imag
// * press SPACE to save

Shown in Group Exhibitions
Codame Arts + Tech Festival, San Francisco, CA, June 4-7, 2018
Beyond Embodiment, Glendale, CA, January 25 – March 20, 2020
Shown in Solo Exhibition
Beit Um Amel, Tahrir Cultural Center, Cairo, EGYPT, February 12-March 11, 2020

VJ Um Amel uses emergent technologies to expand our vocabulary for communicating with each other. Similar to the way in which punk music was a reaction against hyper-polished rock-n-roll of the time, this aesthetic based on computer malfunction, or glitch, is a reaction against the ultra high-definition images saturated beyond real color that is portrayed in contemporary media. The call to touch Data Body X is an invitation to experience haptic manipulation, in this case, of frequency modulation. This installation is made possible by the UCSB Carsey-Wolf Center Faculty Research Support award.