Towards an understanding of socio-technical relations
This essay studies the source code of an artwork from a software studies perspective. By examining code that come close to the approach of critical code studies (Marino, 2006), I trace the network artwork, Pupufu (Lin, 2009) to understand various real-time approaches to social media platforms (MSN, Twitter and Facebook). The focus is not to investigate the functionalities and efficiencies of the code, but to study and interpret the program level of code in order to trace the use of various technological methods such as third-party libraries and platforms’ interfaces. These are important to understand the socio-technical side of a changing network environment. Through the study of code, including but not limited to source code, technical specifications and other materials in relation to the artwork production, I would like to explore the materiality of code that goes beyond technical implementation, and to consider the things that have been inscribed in the level of code socially. I argue that examining code is a way to understand socio-technical relations.
A Matter of Design: Making Society Trough Science and Technology - Proceedings of the 5th Sts Italian Conference, 2014