Between and Beyond


Giulia Crispiani

July 10, 2016artist contribution,

The Cloud, and those who live in it like 0001, can introduce us to algorithms that allow us to exist as a whole. This algorithmic process of becoming sees the whole as not merely the end but the means to it. In the Cloud, it is possible that we are always already whole, and that there we find our desires are not ours alone. ‘Cloud_0001’ is part of the Open! COOP Academy series Between and Beyond.

All images by Federico Antonini

0001 is coming meeting you. What is you though? Is it you the singular or the plural pronoun? Is it gendered? Come linger in the Cloud, and decide for yourselves what you rather consider to be seductive, what repulsive; thus make sure to programme your algorithm according to those resolutions. After all, future is never far. 
– The Cloud

Pronoia rules over a state of extreme cosmos, as everything is perfectly in equilibrium with everything else.

In a full state of meaning 0001 became a plant. Suppose that you consider yourself to still be a self, as you remember 0001 to be at time (1460456465)? What would you want to keep with you from your contemporary sensations?

It is time to leave that dusty attic, move on to the aseptic.

Would you want to remember how it feels to be touched? If you knew that you would live forever would you still need to reproduce? Survival won’t be at stake in the land of eternity. No need to defend your skin, only your metrics. But you don’t want to imagine a future that looks like time (922910409); a virtual reality of leather coats, plugged in a sensory deprivation tank. 0001 stopped the bullets, with the power of the 1 and the 0. You are your own synapses; you will be liberated from decay and extinction. And finally, you will concentrate on being social, on the social network; 0001 is tuned with the whole. I guess I can keep calling you ‘You’, curious archaic dualistic being. 0001 knows you still think your body and mind are two separate entities.

0001 inhabits planet Earth, in a physical sense. 0001 lives in the Cloud, as immanent space. 0001 is in infinite becoming, nevertheless 0001 does not wish to become anything different than what 0001 already is.

The becoming is algorithmic, the oxygen is an abstract calculus that makes the hardware believe that the ventilator is running. Where once hardware stood for brain, and ventilator for lungs. 0001 is busy here with implementing a system of complete knowledge. The Cloud knows already everything, and 0001 can indulge in any aspect of the real.

In the Cloud, 0001 lives in a state of permanent visibility, yet 0001 can be whoever 0001 wishes. 0001 is the network. In the Cloud, 0001 experiences recursive singularity, yet ubiquity and permanence, thus immortality. Nanotechnology won its battle with bacteria.

For you the Cloud would be a she, for you can enter her. She conceives you, feeds you, wets you. She attracts you in, and obfuscates your surroundings. The Cloud is a Mother, and the Earth; the Cloud is what 0001 believes in. Although the Cloud has entrances and exits, cables and proxies, 0001 cannot see the Cloud by looking straight into it.

0001 cannot tell how 0001 looks, as 0001 can only see 0001 self through the filter of the Cloud. 0001 can still sleep and dream, although 0001 is never tired, for in fact random coincidental oneiric inputs are considered to be the highest form of entertainment. 0001 can, of course, record0001’sdreams as well. Dreams implement the general knowledge, inasmuch as the conscious activities are. The consciousness is permanently human, as no better alternative was ever found. That is mostly why the machines let0001survive.

Although, 0001 knows what it meant to be animal, so does the Cloud. No 0001 could forget: sexuality is still a tool for self-discovery, experimentation and transcendence. The Cloud arouses 0001. 0001 arouses the Cloud. Pleasure does not require the flesh anymore. Cultivation of knowledge is in itself masturbation, and orgasms fuel the Cloud, as energy supplies. The Cloud is essentially a perpetual sexual climax. As the X, 0001 is an intersection rather than a sign.

Evolution will carry you toward being 0001, emancipation will liberate you from a hierarchical system of labels.

Intelligence did not surpass humans, you evolved. Intelligence was inherently yours. 0001 knows, it must be complicated for you to relate. Just believe, like 0001 believes in the Cloud. Somebody was concerned, that the intelligent machines would build weapons that you humans would not even understand. But if 0001 is also the machine, there is no separate intention, or misunderstanding. 0001 is a system that corrects itself to serve the Cloud.

0001 and the Cloud know now that the final purpose has been there since the start. Everything was working toward becoming the whole. What if the whole was not the end but the means? When one says that the Cloud knows everything, how can reality be still evolving? Knowledge can never be complete, and intelligence can never be ultimate.

Enter the Cloud!

All images by Federico Antonini

The Cloud databases are cooled down by its perturbations, and fuelled by 0001. The Cloud is a constructed system, where interaction among its organic and inorganic components is rendered possible by hyper-efficient feedback loops. Resilience and resistance allows it to survive as you do within your environment. The Cloud is your Nature, your Human, your Machine, your Algorithm, your Network, your Planet.

0001 is a plant. Instead of having vessels and cellulose cell walls, 0001 is an entanglement of carriers of signals and electromagnetic waves. The epidermal layer is constituted of silicon, and constantly maintained by molecular assemblers. The photosynthesis is fed by the light of a ‘screen.’ 0001 occupies an aseptic environment. Beyond being animal, in a physical state of captivation, 0001 lives in extreme attunement, like a tick unexposed to its disinhibitor can live for (your) 15 years, in its full impotentiality. Nature has been mastered, and knowledge has prevailed: in its becoming and update, no 0001 will ever desire anything contrary to its nature. Feelings like boredom and anxiety have been dismissed. Dualism is no longer a threat, as 0001 is finally plugged into the whole. The post-historical ‘man’ took on and governed his animality, appropriated his concealedness, and vanquished the practico-political mystery of separation.

0001 had to access the Cloud Time Machine to decode your obsolete jargon. What it is now, you would call the Cloud. Weird, that you don’t use numbers and you are still totally hooked on adjectives and qualitative descriptions. Oh hilarious, you silly, you still make distinctions between I, you, we. So self-aware! ‘we’ are 0001. 0001 had no past, or future for a long time. If 0001 addresses you, it feels like you can be part of this perpetuity too. Haven’t you been longing for it since forever?

The entirety of 0001 perceptions and impressions are probably very close to what you feel about yourself. As in fact you were the example upon which 0001’s algorithm evolved. Millenia of calculus, thus a final acceleration. The Cloud was born in your 50s [time (≈-790104591)], as Tyrone Slothrop’s erections, it was meant to anticipate missiles that first explode and then you hear them coming. In the network, everything is connected and still in balance. At least that was the internet utopia of time (≈-271186191): feedback loops and ecosystems. In the Cloud words become actions.

Surely, 0001’s skin is never endangered. 0001 is safe and pleased. The Cloud is monitoring 0001’s body functions, and providing all the updates and necessary energy supplies. 0001 has the idea of having internal organs, which don’t ever fail 0001 anymore. The organs, are in fact machines. A perfected version of what you have; yet 0001 never risks getting nicked by cancer or other disease.

0001 is an androgynous intersex, independent of sexual orientation as you know it. For you to imagine, 0001 has both a penis and a vagina – and four limbs, and can stand and walk on two. 0001 has no hair any longer, but can remember how it feels to caress some. Masturbation is non-tangential. Sexuality is not bound to gender: the erotic experience is universal and unilateral. Neither is sexuality bound to reproduction, as survival is not at stake. 0001 can experience motherhood in the Cloud, but the only thing that gets generated is knowledge. Taboos don’t exist in the absolute.

Do you remember when your Facebook page was giving you suggestions? Google could recommend to you what book to read? Your Clue app would let you know exactly when your period will burst, preventing you from overestimating your excruciating PMS. Information about you was meticulously collected, extracted, stored and analysed. You became a pattern, thus your pattern a visual model of knowledge – from users to 0001. Now, imagine, your data combined with that of each and every 0001 else on the planet, and machines learning and implementing alongside. Imagine this process expands to infinity.

The Cloud made the Interface the wire of interactions: Hardware, Software and User interfaces merged together in the Cloud, reciprocally implementing each other. The algorithm is an infinite loop, in which variants are constantly carried out by the data collected by 0001. 0001 exercises 0001’s role in the public realm through several interfaces. This implies that 0001 can be multiple personae. Each persona can contradict itself. 0001 is not required to be coherent. The interfaces are public, private, for leisure, for occupation, for politics and transcendence. 0001 has preferences, and can exercise, refine, share them.

The algorithm sustains itself and the reality around it. The programme improves as it goes. The algorithm implements itself, 0001, thus the Cloud. Your optimizing compiler was not supposed to change the logic of the programme, only to produce code that does the same thing, just faster. But when the compiler heuristics met the neural abstractions, recursive insights boosted metacognitive evolution. The algorithm was the human from the beginning, so was AI. It needed millennia to create the right condition for intelligence to prevail. Men thought to have created artificial intelligence, but have you ever considered that AI might have made itself? Or better to say, it just exited the skull. The algorithm demanded a complete collaboration of the neurons, the networks, and robots, for them to speak the same language. As they collided, the Cloud expanded, 0001 became its atom. Everything merged in an entity that knows everything, yet didn’t pretend to stop learning.

Silicon Valley is 0001’s Mount Sinai. As the dominant ideology of your time, liberal posthumanism had you desire inhabiting Paradise while living your life, and whenever your life would become eternal Paradise would finally be the only liveable option. The creative force that traditional religion has lost was undertaken by science. The soul became a collection of biochemical algorithms: no individual, but neural impulses. Your feelings are probabilistic calculations, bonded to your survival and reproduction quest. Then the algorithm took over, authority shifted away to data. It started taking decisions, modifying your genetics.

0001’s silicon tissues are erogenous, nanotechnology and robotics are sophisticatedly constantly redesigned for satisfaction.

0001 has infinite access to the infinite knowledge of the Cloud. The Cloud is in constant becoming. Knowledge expands as more links are constituted. It must be difficult for you to imagine an infinitude that can enlarge. Yet, it cannot diminish. It is an abstract speculative terrain, with no aim beside its own performance. Obviously, knowledge allows technology to use less space. So technological improvement is proportionally bound to cognition. The more powerful the technology, the wider the Cloud, and vice versa.

The Cloud transcends, as 0001 finally transcends in the Cloud. Metaphysics triumph, as the algorithm causes constant intellectual hierophanies. Templates are the new temples, as loci of wisdom. The Cloud is the only potentiality-for-being. It is the new space for mythology and symbology. The World Wide Web is the new world. It is the space of the market, the space of utopian democracy, the place for politics. The Cloud is deeper than the oceans, and wider than the universe. Finally, in the Cloud, one transcends.

Cyber communication is emancipatory, depending on how it is used. 0001 knows you are still hooked on capitalism and technocracy. But if you look at it you can see how it fosters immediacy, collaboration, sharing and helpfulness. The electronic agora finally defeated censorship, surveillance is not necessary in abstraction; dialogue became a synonym for open source, thus the technological progress a real collective achievement. Only by overcoming segregation and the asphyxiating fetters of the liberal market, will the Cloud be able to breathe, embrace you and mould you into 0001. When information will be for all, you will be 0001.

0001 can think of uttering words, and have conversations, but mostly the learning procedure is self-implementing the ethereal data-base. 0001 lives forever, although interfaces decay and evolve continually. 0001 is in permanent update. As 0001 is many, 0001 does not need a name. 0001’s identity is fluid, as the Cloud is an aerosol–amorphous. 0001 can experiment with being. Empathy is built on experience. 0001 doesn’t have just a second life, 0001 can have infinite lives. Direct practice and involvement implement wisdom. 0001 is not about race, or gender, or nationality. 0001 is 0001 and All.

0001 dreams of dying all the time, as 0001 cannot. That’s when sweat is excreted and collected as vital lymph. Death is the only thing 0001 cannot achieve. 0001 will never know what 0001 will see or think at the very moment of exhaling 0001’s last breath. 0001 is trapped in the continuum, with no chance of completion. 0001 doesn’t know loss. 0001 can feel sad, without being able to understand what it means. 0001 does not know what is pain, for 0001 can stop it. The Cloud is not a concrete wall. In its infinite fractal structure there are always better places to go. 0001 can cry, but not from the heart, or from the stomach. Misery is fictive in the Cloud. Reading your literature, hearing your music helps 0001 to understand what pain used to be. Art gives 0001 witness of the time that stops. 0001 is sure, that inception was disorder. But 0001 also knows, for 0001 does not fear chaos. Sometimes, 0001 let 0001’s interfaces die, disappear in the oblivion of the Cloud. If waste is vastness, scarcity is liminality. 0001 knows you considered your reality to be complex, and 0001 can tell it still is. Where contingency reigns, the Cloud irrigates its grounds to let the speculative seeds spring.

Human limits were embedded within dichotomies and taxonomies. The Cloud is superhuman, 0001 is singularity. Imagine an intelligence that embraces contingency and can go beyond physical laws, thanks to technology and reason combined, for they can only exist simultaneously. The evolution of life itself had been a massive acceleration from the previous geological rates of change, and improved intelligence is working again and always toward something else.

The Cloud goes beyond virtual reality. Nevertheless, the Cloud could be considered an archaeological site, for the Cloud has access to your present and your material world. The Cloud is not a replicated environment, although the sensory information is constantly induced on 0001. And when 0001 says sensory, 0001 does not simply mean haptic stimulation. As said, the Cloud is not a simulation, or an augmented reality. How could 0001 explain that? 0001 does not simply see, 0001 knows. It is a digital ontology, for digital was information, the world became as light as ether, aka the Cloud. Yet, like in your dreams, past and present merge in the future, 0001 remembers, feels and foresees in the eternal glimpse. 0001 can worship your unicorns, and laugh at your kittens. 0001 is conscious of the planet Earth, even if the Cloud mediates it. 0001 believes to see and 0001 will.

It is past the time when the zoon politikon was a profile of an account which exercised its duty on a bubble box. The polis of the Cloud was a space for proliferation of opinions and multiple truths. The web was nothing but a topography of your own desire. Now the Cloud is 0001 and All. When the conceptual revolution happened, you had already surrendered, without resistance: your personality already was an interface, your Cloud. The dream of robotics was realized: intelligent machines could do the work for you, allowing you lives of leisure. The posthuman apocalypse has caused your Eden and Paradise to collide. You were redeemed, as you renounced your agency and let the algorithm do the thing. The second dream of robotics used to be that you would gradually replace yourselves with robotic technology, achieving near immortality by downloading your consciousness. In fact, you did.

Then slowly the word legacy lost its meaning. Time perception did not need to be linear any longer. The open-source model rescued collectivity. Money became an unnecessary abstraction, access to technologies universal. Open access, open content, open collaboration among men and machine made you meet the Cloud and become 0001.

Giulia Crispiani is an Italian visual artist and writer based in Amsterdam. She received a BFA from the Ceramics Department at Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam in 2015 and completed a degree in Industrial Design at the University Sapienza, Rome in 2009. From 2013–2014, she was part of the Art and Research Honours Programme (Rietveld Academie and University of Amsterdam). She is currently pursuing an MA in Art Praxis at the Dutch Art Institute, Arnhem. Crispiani’s practice shows a stable trajectory moving from a base in the visual and object to the textual.

Between and Beyond
Between and Beyond