a collection of background awareness applications based
on desktop ubiquity
Jonah Brucker-Cohen, Stefan Agamanolis
Desktop Subversibles capitalizes on the ubiquity of our interactions
with computer desktops to convey awareness of activity and a sense of
shared network space among the members of an online community. The
applications in the suite add a networked and physical dimension to
standard desktop activities like copy/paste, mouse movements, and
clicks to highlight their collective and collaborative potential.
MouseTraces / a background graphical display of
mouse movements between two people across distance
MouseTraces is an application that focuses on background connectedness
and awareness between two people across distance. Looking at the
specific relationship of networked computer usage, the project
captures mouse movements on the desktop and transmits a graphical
representation of this movement across the network to the other
ClipIt! / a networked sticky-note application
that provides ambient glimpses of the copy and paste activity of other
ClipIt! is a networked application that provides an ambient connection
to other people's desktops by distributing the contents of each user's
clipboard. The project works like an automatic Post-It or sticky note
that is meant to allow people to catch a glimpse of the cut and paste
activity on other people's machines.
MouseMiles / a networked collective mouse milage
indicator manifested in physical space
MouseMiles is a networked mileage indicator for your mouse. Over time
it calculates the mileage traveled by every connected mouse and relays
that information to a central server. The server collects all of the
incoming mileage and outputs the distance in real-time to move a
physical object, such as a model train around a track.
Clicks / a distributed mouse click collector
rendered as sound in public space
Clicks is a networked application that collects mouse clicks made by
each person connected. Once collected, clicks are sent to a central
server and each connected client is assigned a unique tone which is
played in a physical location, creating an ambient sound installation
serving as an indicator of computer use on a potentially global scale.
Publications and Links
Desktop Subversibles was featured on NoemaLab,
Desktop Subversibles was featured on Tubulence.org, March 2003.
Desktop Subversibles was featured in Digital
Visions, University of British Columbia, May 2003.
MouseMiles demo movie
(Quicktime, 5 MB).
site describing all four Desktop Subversibles.