Episode 4, Technology is Material

Podcast unearthing the materiality of tech. With special guests: Max Dovey and Harriet Horobin-Worley

For large parts of the global population, we’re finding more and more of our lives are happening through digital technologies: from increasing amounts of work taking place online, to accessing essential services like medicine or welfare, to finding information, communicating, forming relationships, entertainment… You name it! More and more things are happening through technology, and with the accelerated development of AI, our data and our time spent online is more valuable than ever.

Yet, as tech takes over more and more of our waking lives – and even sometimes our sleep – we seem to be getting more disconnected from the stuff of how the digital works. So in Control Shift, we’ve been working with artists to explore the materiality of technology and highlight that tech is material: we can explore it, we can play with it, and ultimately we can change it. 

In this podcast, Control Shift Co-director Coral Manton is joined by artists Max Dovey and Harriet Horobin-Worley to discuss the materiality of tech.

Max creates participatory experiences that make use of networks, data, algorithms and computational culture. He runs ‘Rare Earth Walks’ which delve into the ecological trauma forged into our technological devices. Harriet makes interactive art, tools and apps. They are currently working on interactive poems and the surprising results of small acts of cultivation, which will be grown on a personal web server. 

Listen to the podcast embedded above or via Soundcloud or Spotify.

Read the full transcript here.

Below you will find links to resources mentioned in the podcast:

02:45 – Coral refers to her project, Looking for The Cloud
04:25 – Harriet says she runs a community organisation called Queer Tech Bristol
16:20 – Max refers to his project, Rare Earth Walks
22:53 – Harriet mentions a virtual reality boot camp, Dames Making Games
30:02 – Harriet refers to a writer named Dougal Hinde
30:54 – Coral asks about Harriet’s project, Website as a Garden
31:53 – Harriet mentions a movement called the IndieWeb
31:54 – Harriet mentions the Feminist Server Manifesto
33:34 – Coral refers to a project called Solar Protocol
41:03 – Harriet recommends Low Tech Magazine
41:37 – Harriet recommends The Indie Web Community again and Perma Computing
41:53 – Harriet mentions Counter Cloud Strike Action
50:03 – Max is doing a walk in Norway at Piksel Festival
51:45 – Harriet will be running a weekend of workshops around queer creative technologies.

Thanks to our funders Innovate UK for making this podcast possible, and to podcast editor Keziah Wenham-Kenyon.

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