Panel on Cyborgs at U of O’s What is Media 2: What is Life?



University of Oregon in Portland • April 6-8, 2017 •

On Saturday, April 8, 2:45-4:00pm I’ll be chairing a session on Cyborgs.

Chair: Amber Case, Fellow, Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University/Visiting Researcher, MIT Center for Civic Media.

  • Caroline Alphin, ASPECT-Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical and Cultural Thought, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
    “Cyborg Neoliberalism: Practicing Neoliberal Subjectivity through the Fitness Tracker”
  • Justin Barnard, English, State University of New York (SUNY) at Fredonia
    “Ex Humana: How Technology is Changing What it Means to be Human”
  • Patrick Dunham, Comparative Literature, University of Oregon
    “The Eradication of Reality in the Age of the Simulation”
  • Lucy Benjamin, Media Studies/Film Studies, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
    “Loving Life: Romantic Encounters of the Modern Cyborg”

The 7th annual What is…conference will take place April 6-8 at the White Stag complex in Portland. The conference engages communication, media, and nature by examining everyday life—our lifestyles and lifeworks—emphasizing the environments we live in. The event emphasizes how communication is instrumental in and for living systems. What is life and how is life mediated? It builds on last year’s conference-experience, What is Media? (2016), expanding a transdisciplinary notion of medium/media with special attention to its material, historical, and ecological ramifications.

The event marks the second collaboration with scholars from the natural sciences (physical and life sciences) and the arts. Panels and roundtables will present a wide range of topics including but not limited to: media literacies, complexity, ethics, ecocriticism, data, food, health, economics, rights/privacy, audiences, platforms and living technologies.

The conference-experience will continue the focus on an integrated view of communication for the 21st century, and plant the seeds for deeper investigations into complexity in systems, environmental and ecological approaches. In acknowledging art/science, technology, and environments/nature, communication is at an emergent crossroads.

Solid Liquid Air – Episode 1 – Live from Studio 404

Solid Liquid Air Documentary If you don’t know what Solid Liquid Air is, I’m here to tell you. It’s a documentary about a procedure I’ll be getting. Since the procedure is pretty new and still somewhat experimental, I notified a number of documentary filmmakers about it. They’ll be covering my psychological and physical states over the next few months in short episodes that will be released weekly.

As a side note, this procedure concerns technology and my brain, and has nothing to do with my recent ankle injury and titanium implant. This is a bit more invasive than that, and a lot more cyborgian.

Live Interview with Doc Normal and Cami Kaos

On May 11th, 2010 at 7P PST, Doc Normal and Cami Kaos kicked off the documentary film with a set of live interviews. Most of the documentary filmmakers were present:

  • Micheal Atkins
  • Mike Clinton
  • Don Park
  • Amber DeCelle
  • Will Manson
  • Doc Normal
  • Randy Thorton (over Skype chat, as he wasn’t be able to be there in person.)
  • Liz Grover (currently in LA, and will be present during later episodes)

What does the procedure entail? I recorded a conversation with the person who first told me about it. I was hesitant at first, but the opportunity was too large to pass up.

Listen to the audio recording of the preliminary conversation about the procedure: Episode 0 Solid Liquid Air.

Watch Solid Liquid Air Here!

Now are you curious? The livestream of Episode 1 was recorded live and is here if you missed it!

The Ustream was broadcast live from my office, and some of the questions about the procedure were answered there. If you still have questions you’d like to see on answered on future shows, please make a comment below, or tweet me at @caseorganic.

The first episode was broadcast May 11th, 2010 at 7PM PST on Ustream. If you’d like to follow along on Twitter, use the hashtag #solidliquidair.