SE/30, welcome to the 20th century back!.


Actually ‘reusing’ computers means exploiting the power of connecting them altogether, giving back dignity to obsolete machines that then are part of a bigger calculating picture. It’s the ‘software difference’ or how a smart software can transform the hardware in something alive (or dead if it fails). SE/30, welcome to the 20th century back! by Code31 and OKNO is a cellular automata installation (and performance platform) built with a row of twenty networked Mac SE/30 running an earlier version of Max/MSP. This cluster of old machines demonstrates how low-tech is a time-relative concept: what was the state of the art fifteen years before, is now considered a relic of the past. Moreover it’s evident the fascination of the fin-de-siecle computing through a symbolic icon (the first series of Macintosh), that was also already developed in The Classic II Exhibition. Finally the original black and white graphics sounds distant (rough and ‘static’ for the current standards), and familiar at the same time (involuntary citing the aesthetic of digital minimalism and abstraction). In the end the work is a an improvable synthesis of memory and attitudes, happily playing with different unconscious points of reference.