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"Craft is what enables you to be successful
when you're not inspired." - Brian Eno

Pitchfork SEPTEMBER 15, 2016 - by Matthew Strauss

BRIAN ENO LAUNCHES THE SHIP: A GENERATIVE FILM

An interactive website juxtaposes historical imagery with breaking news stories

Earlier this year, Brian Eno released his album The Ship. Today, he's launched a new "generative film" to accompany the record. On a website, The Ship plays, and the user can click on tweets of news stories, which appear alongside historical photos. For example, there is "Apple says initial quantities of iPhone 7 Plus sold." According to a statement on the website, the film uses "a bespoke artificial intelligence programme developed by the Dentsu Lab Tokyo." The statement also asks, "Does the machine intelligence produce a point of view independent of its makers or its viewers? Or are we - human and machine - ultimately co-creating new and unexpected meanings?" The Ship explains:

Humankind seems to teeter between hubris and paranoia: the hubris of our ever-growing power contrasts with the paranoia that we're permanently and increasingly under threat. At the zenith we realise we have to come down again... we know that we have more than we deserve or can defend, so we become nervous. Somebody, something is going to take it all from us: that is the dread of the wealthy. Paranoia leads to defensiveness, and we all end up in the trenches facing each other across the mud.


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