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Wi: Journal of Mobile Media » Blog Archive » Letter from the Editors
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» Mapping the Mobile Digital Commons Network
« Editor’s Choice: Winter/Spring 2007

Fall 2006

Letter from the Editors

Comment?

Welcome to the first issue of Wi, a publication initiative of the Mobile Digital Commons Network. The purpose of this online journal is to highlight and disseminate the on-going research results of two years of collaboration amongst designers, theorists, artists, engineers, software developers as a research network in mobile, wireless and gaming technologies. The title for our journal, a homonym for “why,” reflects the spirit of critical and creative self-reflection on the process of inter-disciplinary digital media production.

The content of Wi has been shaped by the members of MDCN. This first issue reflects some of the pressing questions that we have engaged with as a network researching and developing creative non-commercial applications for mobile digital technologies such as the cellular telephone and the personal digital assistant (PDA).

Wi opens with a brief mapping of the MDCN by Michael Longford, who, along with Sara Diamond, is the principal investigator (or PI) of this network. Following this, you will read a piece by Maroussia Lévesque, Lucie Bélanger and Jason Lewis from Cityspeak who describe how the concept of p2P (private to public) informs their project, which brings private short messaging systems (SMS) from the small screen into public space. This is followed by submissions from members of the EMU team, whose task it is to “evaluate mobile users” within the context of the MDCN.

Alison Harvey’s paper discusses the liminal magic circle as a motif in the production of digital games. Andrea Zeffiro defines and interrogates the new media art practice of ‘locative media,’ a body of ideas, research and artistic practices where many of the MDCN situate their mobile interventions. Janice Leung focuses on a specific mobile device, the cell phone, and attends to the tensions produced in its uptake by artists working within the larger context of the telecommunications market. Neil Barratt questions our use of a collaborative and open-source software, tikiwiki, as a communications strategy for interdisciplinary research.

Given our intent to make Wi act as a collaborative resource for researchers working in these areas, Janice Leung has selected a number of mobility related websites for readers to peruse.

Currently, Wi springs directly from the research now occurring in the MDCN, and will be published 3 times until the end of the project in March 2007. However, we hope that these initial issues act as a template for an online journal open to all researchers working in these inter-related areas of communications, new media, art, design, and engineering. If you have ideas for submissions, suggestions or any other comments, please contact the editors Barbara Crow and Kim Sawchuk at editors@wi-not.ca

Finally, special thanks to Janice Leung, Neil Barratt and Andrea Zeffiro for their intellectual input and technical contribution. Without their energy and collective enthusiasm, we would still be asking “why not?”

Barbara Crow and Kim Sawchuk

Editors
Toronto, Ontario; Montréal, Québec

Biography

Barbara Crow is the incoming director of the graduate program in Communication and Culture at York University. Current research projects include: Digital Cities, focusing on the relationship between digital technology and multimedia cities; Canadian Sexual Assault Law and Contested Boundaries of Consent: Legal and Extra-Legal Dimensions (with Lise Gotell), investigating women’s organizations and legal discourses; the Mobile Digital Commons Network, exploring relations of mobile technologies and cultural production; and most recently, CWIRP exploring wifi as public infrastructure. She was president of the Canadian Women’s Studies Association, 2002-2004.

Kim Sawchuk is the current editor of the Canadian Journal of Communications. Her research involves the close study of the relationship between embodiment, social practice and discourses on technology. Kim has an unusual passion for methodology, particularly qualitative methods. She has been experimenting with the potential of open source software and multimedia tools for collaborative research and developing research protocols and processes for better understanding how to enhance user participation with locative media projects. When Pain Strikes (1999), with co-editors Cathy Busby and Bill Burns) and Wild Science: Reading Feminism, Medicine, and the Media (2000), co-edited with Janine Marchessault are but two of Kim’s many publications. In addition to her academic interests, Kim has been a new media activist. In 1996 she co-founded StudioXX, a feminist research and media arts centre in Montréal.

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» Mapping the Mobile Digital Commons Network
« Editor’s Choice: Winter/Spring 2007

Strict Standards: call_user_func_array() expects parameter 1 to be a valid callback, non-static method collapscat::get_foot() should not be called statically in D:\Groups\HEX-GRP-wi\HEX-PRJ-wi\public_html\journal\wp-includes\plugin.php on line 311