RIDING THE MERIDIAN

12:00 - 12:30
 
Session Start: Sun Feb 20 12:00:00 2000
  ***Now talking in #defib
  ***ChanServ changes topic to 'Riding the Meridian--Women and Technology, Sun Feb 20, noon PST, 20:00 GMT'
[12:00] <Surd> Welcome to this discussion of the new issue of Riding the Meridian--Women and Technology.
[12:00] cguertin* wonders what would a female-designed interface look like?
[12:01] <Surd> Why an issue on Women and Technology, Jen?
[12:01] <jley> I wanted to do an issue on Women and Tech for a few reasons
[12:01] <jley> one ... DAC was so inspirational ... and I got to meet many of the women who are in this issue
[12:02] <jley> two ... Judy Malloy held an excellent conference over the summer called Gender and Identity in New Media
[12:02] <Helen> it was noticeable at DAC how the women were the ones striding ahead with the technology
[12:02] <jley> and it became evident that ... our numbers were greater than we knew
[12:02] <Djuna> in what way?
[12:03] <jley> I've had men say to me 'women are having all the fun in hypertext'
[12:03] <Helen> :)
[12:03] *Sue smirks
[12:03] <Djuna> right on!
[12:03] <cguertin> working on it ;-)
[12:03] <jley> that's a generalization ... but there are an amazing amount of talented women in this field
[12:03] <jley> it seemed time to try to get even more of them together
[12:03] <jley> and show the incredible variety of their work
[12:03] <Surd> Yes, well the new issue certainly makes that point.
[12:04] <mez> jen>>so u think "women" have ah lezz restrictive bent to using new tech media?
[12:04] <jley> mmmm I'm not sure
[12:04] <jley> Carolyn said once that because there is so little history in hypertext ...
[12:04] <mez> itz a hard one to fathom methinkz
[12:04] <jley> women feel freer to create within it
[12:04] <Djuna> i greatly appreciated it because although there are a lot them [us] they're a lot harder to find (it's still a man's world)
[12:04] <jley> right Carolyn?
[12:04] <Helen> many men only want to use it to see Lara Croft in better resolution
[12:05] <mez> eheeh helen:)
[12:05] <PbN> is Lara here?
[12:05] *Helen giggles
[12:05] *mez will be the token lara...NOT!
[12:05] <cguertin> i think that grammar is as yet undefined and that leaves the form open to play, to experimentation...
[12:05] <jley> exactly :)
[12:05] <Surd> What is the URL, Jen?
[12:05] <mez> ooh play, i luv 2 play:)
[12:05] <jley> Kate Hayles made the point that she thinks women at times use the tech to different ends than men
[12:06] <cguertin> women seem to be the most playful at this point in time
[12:06] *mez x-posez her childlike wurdcore ;)
[12:06] <jley> Riding the Meridian--Women and Technology
[12:06] <Helen> it's like cooking, experimenting with different ingredients see how it comes out
[12:06] <Djuna> woow - are you saying women want more creative freedom then men?
[12:06] <cguertin> it is indeed a melange of a form, a pinch of this, a smidge of that, and stir well
[12:06] <jley> Claire is your question to Carolyn ??
[12:06] <Surd> Different ends, Jen?
[12:07] <Djuna> in reaction to her statement, yes
[12:07] <cguertin> think i missed the question
[12:07] <jley> I believe (paraphrasing) she pointed out things like war games
[12:07] <jley> etc
[12:07] <Djuna> we're falling into cliches here ...
[12:07] *mez is curiouz az 2 how many girls [and token girlz] r professionalli trained multimediar creatorz?
[12:07] <jley> exactly. Kate said these were generalizations. Probably better if you read her comments rather than I try to paraphrase them :)
[12:07] <Helen> there'll be more if Sue and I have our way...
[12:07] <Loss> How is the involvement of women in hypertext different than their involvement in print media?
[12:08] <mez> i mean here that iz!
[12:08] <Sue> -mez - very few men are prof trained either
[12:08] <Sue> it is a self-taught craft don't you think?
[12:08] <Loss> One can point to examples of "play" in print also!
[12:08] <Djuna> can they ever!
[12:08] <jley> I'm not sure that the differences are what interests me the most
[12:08] <mez> i think the self-taught aspect is relevant, and mebbe super.seeds gender
[12:08] <cguertin> agreed, sue. but more men have a background in technology. there's something about teaching yourself the rudiments of a form that invites you, makes you more willing to bend the rules.
[12:09] <Sue> jen - tell us what interests you most
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[12:09] <jley> more that there is no difficulty finding work by women that is wonderful by any criteria ...
[12:09] <Sue> -carolyn, yes i take your point
[12:09] <Loss> But it seemed to me, J, it was said there's more room for play here...
[12:09] <Loss> than print.
[12:09] <jley> historically Loss
[12:10] <Surd> I liked Diane Greco's point in the Meridian round table that the word 'Technology' in 'Women and Technology' kind of reads like the word 'Power'.
[12:10] <jley> ie ... I don't have to look at hundreds of years of history/men being the ones who did most of the creating that has been documented
[12:10] <cguertin> the heart of the form is a personal communion with its elements. women don't have the corner on that, but right now they are making the most of it
[12:11] <Sue> i like what both carolyn and jen are saying - yes
[12:11] <Djuna> ah, that makes a lot of sense Jen
[12:11] <Surd> Is the issue about questions of power?
[12:11] <jley> Access is power
[12:11] <jley> and women have access
[12:11] <jley> that may be one of the striking things about the net ... and what it has given us
[12:12] <margie> I think this might be temporary--as soon as there is a big audience and lots of money involved, it will be harder for women to get access, perhaps
[12:12] <jley> I wonder about that too margie
[12:12] <cguertin> web privatization looms...
[12:12] <Djuna> it's probably the first time in history we've had great access to a creative form publicly from the beginning
[12:12] <cguertin> helped create it too
[12:12] <Sue> -djuna good point
[12:12] <jley> So we need to make sure we maintain that
[12:12] <Loss> I think that privatization is a certainty.
[12:12] <jley> not just for women
[12:12] <Surd> Well of course that goes for me, too, Claire.
[12:12] <margie> yes, because so few people saw the potential at the beginning, but now...
[12:12] <jley> but for all creative people
[12:12] <jley> minorities
[12:12] <jley> etc
[12:12] *mez wonders if we are talkin about half the picture...class/educational etc
[12:13] <Sue> something that bothers me a lot..
[12:13] <Loss> Poets also
[12:13] <jley> and yes ... access is like it or not a class issue
[12:13] <cguertin> and a literacy issue
[12:13] <Sue> is that i would really prefer to get rid of the body issue all together
[12:13] <jley> and an english issue
[12:13] <Sue> i know it's naive and idealistic but men AND women are rediscovering themselves here
[12:13] <Sue> i would prefer a third gender on the web
[12:14] <PbN> YAY Sue!
[12:14] <Sue> long live the spivak!
[12:14] <margie> I think there is lots of access across classes just now--I know lots of women who bought web tv for their husbands, and chat all the time on it now
[12:14] <mez> ooh a third gender! great ideer...
[12:14] *Sue bows
[12:14] <jley> I liked Carolyn Guyer's statement that our real challenge will be to deal with our multiplicity
[12:14] <cguertin> the mandate of the issue, however, was work by women. in the fall, Jen and Margie will look at another gender, male.
[12:14] <jley> and LOOK we will teehee
[12:14] <jley> just kidding
[12:14] <Sue> yes, multiplicity rules
[12:15] <mez> i really like the balance there...well done with harmonizing the debate j & m...
[12:15] *margie starts rummaging through the calendar, weeping
[12:15] <Sue> jen- will it be pinups? oo er!
[12:15] <jley> poets in socks??
[12:15] <jley> sorry :)
[12:15] <Sue> please - not poets
[12:15] <mez> eheheh
[12:15] <Sue> cyborgs
[12:15] <cguertin> there are no bodies here in virtuality, but there are genders, sexualities, voices...and poets in their stocking feet...
[12:15] <Surd> There is another great 'cultural question', that of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer... related?
[12:15] <margie> the men will get to make paper airplanes
[12:16] <margie> Jim has a point--but that will also happen with internet providers
[12:16] <Surd> What will?
[12:16] <Sue> but will poverty stop ppl having net access?
[12:16] <jley> well, capitalism just seems to support the creation and then the tearing down of monopolies
[12:16] <jley> I know there are organizations that are working to provide more access
[12:16] <margie> a great divide between the biggies and the rest of us
[12:17] <Sue> are you talking globally or inside the US etc?
[12:17] <Helen> in the UK WAP phones are supposed to be about to revolutionise access -- but I'm not so sure
[12:17] <jley> in the US Sue ... I've seen them ... you can donate your computer ... etc
[12:18] <Sue> ok
[12:18] <Sue> well that's another conversation i think
[12:18] <jley> I think so too
[12:18] <Sue> it can be a diversion
[12:18] <Surd> Jen, could you give us an overview of the new issue?
[12:18] <jley> Sure
[12:18] <Djuna> i gave my old one to the my apt. janitor's church
[12:19] <jley> We have a lit section, with new work by a variety of women in hypermedia and traditional print lit
[12:19] <jley> theory section where Carolyn and Margie created the Progressive Dinner Party
[12:19] <jley> with work by 39 women working in web media
[12:19] <jley> Carolyn's DAC paper about Califia
[12:20] <jley> the roundtable with Shelley Jackson, N. Katherine Hayles, Marjorie Perloff, Linda Carroli and Diane Greco
[12:20] <jley> an interview with Daniela Gioseffi ... creator of Wise Women's Web
[12:20] <jley> and a well published poet
[12:20] <Surd> It's a huge issue.
[12:20] <Surd> How long did you work on it?
[12:21] <jley> and an interview with Judy Malloy in the Means ... and, in the Means section, articles by geniwate, T. Dunn, and Deena Larsen.
[12:21] <jley> I started in November ...we started in November
[12:21] <Djuna> the roundtable was a really nice cap to it all - not just showing the work, but some of the thoughts behind it, fueling it -
[12:21] <Surd> We?
[12:22] <jley> I started working on my sections ... Margie and Carolyn on the D Party
[12:22] <cguertin> the roundtable being the wallpaper, as it were, behind the thinking fueling the rest of the work
[12:22] <Djuna> to have done that alone you'd have to be superwoman
[12:22] <jley> yes couldn't have been done
[12:22] <mez> jen>>how have u found the actual process of collating the work? musta Been fascinating...
[12:22] <jley> the issue is a kind of testament to net.wurk
[12:22] <cguertin> and vision
[12:22] <jley> shucks ...
[12:23] <Surd> Yes, amazing issue...
[12:23] <jley> I do this because I find it incredibly satisfying to find work by a variety of people and find ways to put it into a larger context
[12:23] <jley> which I think is what propelled what Carolyn and Margie did too
[12:23] <jley> and Carolyn's trAce Assemblage ... which is the heart of the Dinner Party
[12:23] <Sue> i am always stunned by the connectivity between ppl working in this medium
[12:24] <Djuna> it has a very warm community atmosphere - like a dinner party ...
[12:24] <Surd> How does this relate to Carolyn's trace Assemblage?
[12:24] <cguertin> the curse of the web is its size. finding each other, finding key works remains difficult. hopefully this issue rectifies that a bit.
[12:24] <Sue> seems very little rivalry and antagonism - all working together
[12:24] <jley> carolyn do you want to answer that??
[12:24] <cguertin> sure
[12:24] <mez> sue> for sure...
[12:24] <Sue> i want to say how proud we are to house that collection, btw
[12:24] <cguertin> Assemblage is a large scale gallery with hundreds of works in multiple languages
[12:24] <jley> it's an amazing resource
[12:25] <cguertin> the dinner party pulls out some highlights, celebrates the diversity (in English)
[12:25] <mez> Assemblage is a great re:sauce...i haven't seen anitink like it else.where on the net
[12:25] <cguertin> from Assemblage's overwhelming mass
[12:25] <cguertin> it's the product of quite a few year's work
[12:25] <Loss> What is the Assemblage URL?
[12:25] <margie> Assemblage must be the Only place where so much of the web is brought together.
[12:25] <cguertin> i started building it because there was nowhere to go to find out what women were doing
[12:26] <jley> and then the Dinner Party gestalt was a unique way to present the works in this issue
[12:26] <cguertin>
[12:26] <Sue> do you find the urls to be very transient? that is always difficult
[12:26] <jley> Margie take bows please :))
[12:26] *Sue smiles at margie
[12:26] <margie> thanks to Jennifer and Carolyn for cooking up dinner with me!
[12:26] <cguertin> the urls don't change as much as one would expect. commercial sites seem to expire more frequently than art and personal ones.
[12:27] *margie beams with pleasure
[12:27] <cguertin> Margie, my hat off to you in role as chef.
[12:27] <Sue> Teri hoskin will love this idea - she was a cook for years
[12:27] <margie> yes, Carolyn is right--people have a great longevity on the web--Loss, so much better than print, in some ways!
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[12:27] <cguertin> and hail to the (editor-in-) chief who made it all possible...
[12:27] <jley> frankly ... with the Dinner Party and the lit section ... with works by Claire, Mez, Sue ... just to mention the people here ...
[12:27] <Sue> we hatched the noon quilt sitting round a pretend kitchen table drinking pretend wine!
[12:27] <jley> the darn thing is huge
[12:28] <Surd> Yes, tis scrumptious. There is also new work for this issue, yes?
[12:28] <jley> Yes Claire, mez, Sue ... do you want to talk about your work?
[12:28] <cguertin> kathy rae huffman also worked with the dinner party metaphor for the faces list
[12:28] <mez> sure
[12:28] <Loss> Assemblage looks great!
[12:28] <cguertin> * blush
[12:29] <Djuna> but lord it's hard to find what you want! you have to weed through so much dross and commercialism these days - i really like that so much significant work is gathered in assemblage -
[12:29] <cguertin>
[12:29] <mez> my proj was 1 i've had going for a while...called eall[h]ER
[12:29] <Surd> Claire, your High Crimson, how did the context of this issue play into your composition of this piece, if at all?

From High Crimson by Claire Dinsmore
[12:29] <Loss> I'll have to make an EPC feature of it at some point soon.
[12:29] <Sue> i'd like to say about my piece that jen's invitation came at a perfect time
[12:29] *Sue waits for claire to answer
[12:29] <Djuna> ted's been doing that for years
[12:29] <cguertin> i try to be careful in my selections, try to privilege work that expands boundaries--language, art and programming...
[12:29] *mez waits for Claire to answer 2;)
[12:30] <Djuna> it's a tribute to my love of the gender really - when I was first invited the title of the issue was 'women and gender'
[12:30] <mez> *listening to Claire*



Feb 20/2000
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