OS/error: Operating system for the human, the computer and the environment

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
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Master’s Programme in Visual Communication Design
This practice-based master’s thesis contains a written text and design outcome and uses applied visual communication design research with a feminist methodology and theoretical framework. I ask: “How can I communicate the softening boundaries of and between the human, the computer, and the environment, by way of technofeminism and visual communication design?” The work unfolds from my situated history and embodied knowledge and is an effort to draw attention to the socio-political power that operates through technology. In the written text, I assemble a chronicle of historical and contemporary works of art and visual communication design to present a technofeminist communication of softening boundaries. Furthermore, I think with various writers and articulate technofeminism as a significant discourse today. Finally, I frame both autotheory and mixing as methods rooted in feminist theory and science and describe their creative application to the video, poetry, and sound of OS/error. The practical outcome OS/error is a six-mode conceptual operating system that poetically performs: Searching, Functioning, Building, Aligning, Scripting and Scrolling. These processes mediate interconnectedness through supporting the perception of humans and technological inventions as different compositions of nature and therefore indivisible from the environment. OS/error functions to rupture norms and dismantle oppressive fixities. It is an intentional and critical mode of operating, resisting a culture of binary code, measurement and calculation and maintaining the functions of indeterminacy, inefficiency and delay. OS/error is a means to reflect on what is unknown and feared, and ultimately advance queerness as a shared phenomena within the human, the computer, and the environment. Link to project: www.oserror.run
Valojärvi, Laura
Thesis advisor
Tervo, Juuso
Smith, Tim
technofeminism, critical posthumanism, boundaries, queer abstraction, glitch, failure, speculative design, video