We are the music makers tips

Ghostly appearances: Le Princes Traffic Crossing Leeds Bridge

Le Prince: The Ghost in the Tube The spectral presence of YouTube becomes especially interesting in the case of uploaded shots of pre-cinema films. One can find several of Etienne-Jules Mareys chronophotographic studies on YouTube, and since they were shot with a camera technique that recorded images at regular intervals, they can be easily synthesized for screening. The animation of Eadweard Muybridges series of instantaneous photographs are also found in the ether of YouTube. This article, however, will specifically address the return of the films of an inventor who himself is the true ghost of film history: Louis Aim Augustin Le Prince, born in 1841 The content of any medium is always another medium, Marshall McLuhan once explained.7 The return of film on YouTube in a different medium is, in the case of the inventor Le Prince, a resurrection of the pre-eminently ghostly figure of cinema. His name has always haunted film history for two reasons. The film cameras he invented are among the very first in cinematic history, and he shot films on photosensitive paper rolls as early as the fall of 1888. His cameras have survived and display a working mechanism devised at a very early stage. However, there are uncertainties concerning how his projector worked, and in patent applications and disputes with the famous inventors of cinema, such as the Lumire brothers and Edison, the description of the projector was considered insufficient. Our limited knowledge about Le Princes projector is most of all due to the second reason for his spectral position in film history, his personal biography. Le Prince mysteriously disappeared on a train journey between Paris and Dijon in 1890. On YouTube, one can see all three of Le Princes films from which frames have survived. There is a shot of the Leeds bridge in the summer of 1889, an image of an accordion player and a scene from the 31 31 Storage

YouTube as killer app for the iPhone

soon enjoy original content on Apple TV, but more importantly, YouTube became sort of a killer app for the new and hyped iPhone. According to a press release from Apple, YouTube had in fact begun to encode videos in the advanced H.264 format to achieve higher video quality and longer battery life on mobile devices. Initially, some 10,000 videos would be available, but YouTube promised to continue adding content each week until the full catalogue of videos was available in the H.264 format. 33 Apparently, YouTube made great efforts to hook up with the mobile community. Offering video services on mobile devices seems to have been a key opportunity for the company, and YouTubes partner Nokia serves as a case in point. Rumor has it that a Nokia cell phone due to the companys 40 percent share of the world market is currently the technological device producing the majority of media on a global scale. Consequently, there are innumerable blog posts, sites and online comments on mobile-media usage. For instance, a year ago, thenokiaguide. com stated that YouTube has made a huge impact on our Web 2.0 lives. Its popularity can best be seen from the amount of [Nokia] apps specifically made for YouTube alone. In a time frame of just a few months we have not one but four apps: Mobitubia, Emtube, YTPlayer and the YouTube Java app. In addition to these, the blog mentioned the mobile YouTube site, as well as the option on some Nokia devices to watch clips directly from the browser with Flash Lite support. Since when did we have so many apps and services available for just one video service?34 30 30 Storage

Try to erase a hard drive it is almost impossible

are working intensively on an online-based operating system called Windows Azure. Others have been quicker to switch over. Adobe recently launched Photoshop.com, where anyone can now arrange his/her pictures online something Flickr has offered its users since 2007 Natu. rally, Amazon as well belongs to the clouds avant-garde. Already in August 2006, the company launched the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) a web service that provides resizable compute capacity in the cloud. 14 The service was designed to make Web scale computing easier for developers, and since the launch, hundreds of thousands of developers and programmers, websites and applications have been paying to use the companys servers. Because Amazons total computational capacity is used only a few times a year, it is more lucrative to rent out servers that are not used regularly. For instance, about a year ago, the Animoto company, which customizes media presentations of users photographs and music, was able to serve 25,000 customers an hour using Amazons cloud of computing capacity. Instead of increasing its own server capacity a hundredfold, which would hardly have been possible technically, Animoto paid ten cents an hour per Amazon server. In fact, cloud computing has been so vital to Animotos operations that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has used the company as an example of how well EC2 helps web apps scale when their traffic hockey sticks, according to TechCrunch.15 Naturally, for actors the clouds attraction lies in new markets and business opportunities, but with regard to information theory, the shift from desktop to webtop also implies a fundamental change in how we understand binary categories such as computer and Web, archive, database and sharing. YouTubes model of using the Web as the platform for media content and distribution was hardly the first, but it was a preliminary and popular move toward this digital cloud. Of course, this meant initial hassles and nuisances. For instance, in April 2006, Forbes pointed out that the 40 million videos and 200 terabytes of data that were already being streamed from the companys too few servers and undersized machinery certainly constituted a significant element of risk.16 Three months later, USA Today reported that 65,000 videos were uploaded to YouTube daily, and that every day, users clicked on about 100 million video clips. These enormous volumes meant that time spent watching YouTube clips already amounted to almost two thirds of general video watching on the Internet.17 At the same time, the companys costs for bandwidth were approaching a million dollars a month. Consequently, much of the venture capital YouTube brought in was likely used to finance and optimize the websites technical infrastructure. The deal YouTube made with the ISP Limelight Networks was certainly as advantageous as it was secret, but Forbes nevertheless expressed some skepticism regarding a business model in which so much money was invested in something that hardly generated any revenues at all.18 In his book Planet Google, Randall Stross claimed that YouTubes phenomenal popularity was technologically grounded in the close timing of three central IT factors. What first enabled YouTubes success was the rapid expansion of broadband. During the dotcom boom around the turn of the millennium, optical fibers that could circle the Earth 11,000 times were being laid down,19 and YouTube and others were able to reap the benefits of this digital infrastructure. During the period when Web connections were made using 56.6 kbit/s modems, a similar video website would have had no possibility of breaking through. Moving images, 300 301 Storage

The infrastructure of cloud computing

The Internet is, of course, an optimal medium because of its decentralized network structure; in short, it is a cloud made up of different smaller clouds. However, in terms of IT infrastructure and databases that lie below the cloud, it does not seem rational anymore to build separate storage systems at individual archives, to use the ALM sector as an example. The current international trend among cultural-heritage institutions is certainly merging and centralization. 2 2 Storage

Kutiman mixes YouTube: funky mashup site

Another option YouTube offers are the so-called embedded links that facilitate integration of YouTube videos into all types of other environments, from personal websites and amateur or professional blogs to the online services of traditional media such as newspapers, magazines and television channels. YouTube even explicitly encourages such embeddings, as is evidenced by the proposed links to several other Web 2.0 platforms.12 The YouTube database, in other words, is accessible not only through the one interface that Google manages itself. While surfing the Internet, a user can encounter moving images branded with the companys logo almost anywhere. When a video has been watched through an embedded link, the viewer is offered the possibility of looking at so-called related material, too. The user can thus navigate the database from an external site also, albeit with fewer options. The YouTube database, however, does not only consist of video files, but also contains titles, brief descriptions called info, tags, hyperlinks to the uploaders site or to related material, as well as user comments of variable, and sometimes quite extensive, proportions. In addition, it stores data concerning the number of views, popularity ratings, flagging rates, recursive links and other kinds of statistical information. In fact, video retrieval and management depend fundamentally upon such user-generated input provided as text. Since moving-image files are not machine-readable meaning that the program cannot identify the semantic content of this kind of file information management relies on metadata that names, describes or categorizes whatever there is to be seen. This is an essentially hybrid constellation, since users provide semantic input, which the machine then processes algorithmically, producing different types of clustering with a corresponding organization of video files and metadata.13 Ultimately, this technological infrastructure can be seen as a specific affordance enabling new forms of media practice. In a way, thus, understanding YouTube means describing it in terms of a hybrid interaction where humans and machines users and information management systems are inextricably linked. One could also refer to the approach formulated by the so-called Actor-Network theory, according to which human and non-human actors have to be considered equally important in the constitution of social interaction.14 As the way in which YouTube and other Web 2.0 applications such as Flickr, Facebook and other function depends fundamentally on the way in which they succeed in channeling user activities into software design, one could describe them in terms of what Tim OReilly addressed as architecture of participation, which is also in a way akin to Bruno Latours analyses of translations of social protocols 2 2 Storage

The McCain greenscreen challenge: Star Trek version

No such videos exist for Barack Obama. In fact, except for a few videos that mock Obamas sometimes hesitant delivery and catch him losing his train of thought in a campaign speech, there seems to be very little footage that allows remix artists to portray him in a defamatory way by rearranging words, sentences or facial expressions. It would be naive to assume that this is a coincidence. In his second book, The Audacity of Hope, Obama tells the story of how his Republican opponent, a politician who went on to self-destruct about halfway through the campaign, not unlike many of Obamas other opponents so far in his career, hired a young videographer to follow him around for days on end. The idea was to tape every occurrence that might portray Obama in an unfavorable light and hurt his electoral prospects, precisely the setup that Jim Webb used to entrap George Allen two years later.16 Obama tells the story to illustrate the kind of tactics that political campaigns use, without condemning or condoning the tactic as such (after all, he went on to campaign for Jim Webb in Virginia in 2006; these appearances are amply documented on YouTube too). But for Obama, the story is also a metaphor for the constant scrutiny he was and still is under. For him to lose his cool in front of a camera would have meant morphing into the stereotype of the angry black man, thereby endangering any aspiration he could have to appeal to white mainstream voters. In fact, as one can tell from the relevant passages in his first book, he developed early on in his life a sense of how to behave amongst white people to make them feel safe and secure.17 It is probably not too farfetched to speculate that this particular sense of self-awareness not only helped Obama develop a successful media personality as he entered the political stage. It also helped him gain, or rather retain, almost complete control of himself as a YouTube personality. His performances on camera are always pitch-perfect as he alternates between a trademark look of bemused detachment and a pose of engaged earnestness, occasionally throwing in his now world-famous smile for good measure. Accordingly one could argue that YouTube introduces a new discipline of politics as performance. YouTube creates a public sphere, or sub-sphere, that is relentlessly unforgiving to those who slip up. It forces a new degree of restraint and self-control on politicians who want to appeal and succeed beyond their core constituencies. But then again, as in the case of Barack Obama, one could argue that the world that YouTube made favors those who already possess such restraint and self-control. It would seem that George Allen, much like the regrettably addled John McCain, represents the contrary case: a politician who did not understand the new discipline of politics as performance, who lost his self-control on camera and was punished for it. However, if you look at the macaca moment video clip closely, it becomes evident that George Allen clearly knew what he was doing. He did not just insult a dark-skinned bystander and get caught in the act. He knew who Sidarth was, that he worked for the Webb campaign, and that he followed him around to tape precisely the kind of occurrence that Allen: one is tempted to say: almost generously produced for him. Of course, one could still try to read the macaca moment as a case of lack of restraint, and even an understandable one at that: the pressure became too much for Allen, he lost his cool and threw a tantrum. But that is not what happened. The insult is couched in a relatively elaborate argument about the difference between Jim Webbs Virginia and the real Virginia, the conservative parts where Allens constituents live. Allen is making fun of Webb for sending his videographer rather than coming to visit these parts of the state himself. By doing so, Allen is merely rehearsing a standard argument from the Republican campaign arsenal, carving out a difference between real, i.e. conserva tive, white Southern Americans, and everyone else, particularly brown and black people. Marking out this difference is the rhetorical essence of Nixons famous Southern strategy, whereby the Republican par ty moved to provide a new political tent to disenfranchised Southern Democrats in the wake of Lyndon B. Johnsons civil rights legislation of 2 2 Form

Welcome to America: George Allens macaca moment

Sidarths tape furnished incontrovertible proof of Allens racist slipup and was picked up by national television networks, creating a major political controversy that dominated news coverage for several days. Allen, in fact, had to go on Meet the Press, the flagship of the Sunday morning political talk shows, and try to explain his way out of what he had said at his campaign rally. But to no avail. The meme of Allens subliminal racism was set, and in short order investigative journalists dug up stories of other examples of racists outbursts from friends and former colleagues. They even found out that Allen had something of a fetish for the Confederate flag, which he had used to decorate his home 22 23 Form

Marc Aug on YouTube stills from Non-Places | Are Airports Non-Places

Aug states that the individual, at least in Western societies, wants to be a world in himself; he intends to interpret the information delivered to him by himself and for himself. 6 He further argues that the supermodernity of our contemporary world points to a need for radical rethinking of the notion of place. He uses the concept of anthropological place, and contrasts this place of identity, relations and of his tory to the non-places of supermodernity. Clearly the word non-place designates two complementary but distinct realities: spaces formed in relation to certain ends (transport, transit, commerce, leisure), and the relations that individuals have with these spaces. 7 Although places and 34 34 Storage

Zidane vs. Materazzi

Most clips on YouTube that can be related to the topic of sports do not contribute to the communication on sports in this narrower sense. One of the typical modes of appropriation in YouTube takes cultural products, be it a film or a sports competition, and transforms its meaning by re-staging or re-editing it. These kinds of clips are interesting because they are somehow between the database logic defined by the sports discourse and YouTubes dynamic of recontextualization that goes way beyond sports comparison of performances. The decisive scenes of the 2008 Super Bowl, for example, famous for its surprising outcome and also for the most remarkable performances, can be watched as real video as well as an animation done with an early, now nearly classic football computer game.22 Still, it is significant for sports that these appropriations are used to understand and discuss the real happenings and to criticize the television commentary. The more weird appropriations of sports events dont aim at the most accurate re-staging of the happenings, but they can still be related to sports incentive to discover how it happened. Take the innumerable video comments on the infamous headbutt by Zinedine Zidane during the World Cup final of 2006. Using visual effects, videos commenting on the event replace, for example, one of the two players involved with a lamppost, an armed terrorist, and so on. Thus, they still contribute, at least on a metaphorical level, to the ongoing speculation concerning what really happened on the field and what the reasons were for this behavior. While these examples, then, are still connected to the communication on sports, using various remediations to gain insight into real happenings, they obviously go beyond mere comparison of performances. Naturally, YouTube is a huge machine for relating and comparing; even a single clip often presents sequences or rankings of comparable items, from the best touchdowns and the most embarrassing knockouts to the sexiest athletes. YouTubes various mechanisms of linking different clips guarantee that there are no clear criteria and no borders for comparisons. This means, for example, that the worst fouls or the sexiest athletes are compared, that changes from different leagues and different levels are comparable, and of course, it also means that the appropriation of a sporting event by means of a computer game is related to similar appropriations of a film or anything else. There is, quite simply, no specific means of comparison that fits the very systematic requirements of sports. Where YouTube contributes to the comparison of sports performances, it does so on the basis of and in close connection with other media. The embedding of videos in online forums, blogs, etcetera involves them in a communication on sports that is not identifiable as a distinct field on the pages of YouTube. Conclusion While YouTube is, as a database, well integrated into the media sports complex, the sites way of relating and comparing are at the moment of no particular use for modern competitive sports. This doesnt mean that YouTubes modes of comparison are chaotic, unreliable or of no use at all. Rather, it remains significant that practices that are somehow connected to sports but cant be considered sports according to the more narrow definition benefit from the dynamics of YouTube and might 24 24 Form

Turkey Bowling: Practicing sports in inapproriate surroundings

Sports is not understood here as a topic, but rather as a field of knowledge and communication that follows specific rules. My main argument is that the established modes and procedures in media sports are still retraceable on YouTube (and contribute some of their dynamics to it), but that the dynamics of YouTube somehow subvert the main procedures of media sports. Thus, sports on YouTube is in some aspects tied to other media but in others detached. Insofar as it is detached from other media content and defined dominantly by YouTubes own procedures and practices, sports becomes, interestingly enough, less and less sports at least in a more narrow sense that will be elaborated upon below. 23 23 Form