Dan Paluska

guggenheim fellowship application, tv2.0, twvee, public history file for physical space

tv 2.0, twvee, 2 way television doodle

i’m applying for the guggenheim fellowship. it’s due very soon and i’m way behind but the application will be focused around some implementation of the system shown in the tv2.0 doodle above. the doodle currently tells the story in a nicer way than my application but it should change a lot over the next couple days.

about the fellowship:

The Foundation receives between 3,500 and 4,000 applications each year. Although no one who applies is guaranteed success in the competition, there is no prescreening: all applications are reviewed. Approximately 220 Fellowships are awarded each year.

and from the frequently asked questions:

The average amount of Fellowship grants in the 2008 United States and Canada competition was approximately $43,200. Since the purpose of the Guggenheim Fellowship program is to help provide Fellows with blocks of time in which they can work with as much creative freedom as possible, grants are made freely. No special conditions attach to them…

the application resources:

So, on to my application.
There are 3 main documents I am working on as google docs.

1. A brief narrative account of your career, describing your previous accomplishments. This account should include mention prizes, honors, and significant grants or fellowships that you have held or now hold, showing the grantor and the inclusive dates of each award.

http://docs.google.com/View?id=dcpfp46j_145cvg9tcfm I am focusing on my history and accomplishments through 3 directions: artist(music, sculpture, doodles, timelapse), systems engineer(mech eng, robotics, wikipedia/linux analysis), and community organizer(collision collective, radio show, etc). this is something i have thought about a decent amount but never tried to actually write down so it’s slow and needs some work.

2. A list of work:
Publications, if you are a scholar, scientist, or writer.
Give exact titles, names of publishers, and dates and places of publication.
Playwrights should also include a list of productions.
Exhibitions, if you are an artist.
Include a chronological list of shows, citing dates and places, and a list of collections in which your work is represented. Forthcoming shows should also be mentioned.


3. A statement of plans for the period for which the Fellowship is requested. Applicants in science or scholarship should provide a detailed, but concise, plan of research, not exceeding three pages in length. Applicants in the arts should submit a brief statement of plans in general terms, not exceeding three pages in length.

http://docs.google.com/View?id=dcpfp46j_147d62kv727 [UPDATE- i actually just turned in 3 doodles, this is actual pdf submission, http://www.scribd.com/doc/26286341/Paluska-Plans-for-guggenheim-fellowship ] My proposal for the project is focused on the ideas of the broadcaster project, twvee, tv 2.0, 2 way television, open systems engineering, open information channels, public history files through video, and distributed systems. Specifically, the proposal is to openly develop and implement an easily accessible public video booth for the Gowanus Public Housing project in Brooklyn, across the street from where I just moved, my local environment. Possibly this would be a short video version and a timelapse installation? The exact details should not be solidified, only the process, goals, and small steps. The exact form of the installation will be determined by working for a couple months with the local community.

see also the broadcaster project proposal to the banff/01sj/sundance locative cinema call. that is viewable here.

various doodles on the general idea of tv2.0, broadcaster project, local news 2.0, etc in this flickr set.

and notes on the broadcaster project.

television 2.o

Eyebeam artist residency application
May 12, 2009, 3:29 pm
Filed under: art, information, opensource, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , ,

It is that time of year again. I am applying for the artist residency program at Eyebeam atelier in New York City (this will be my third try, persistence is important!). It’s a great program so if you’re an artist in the NYC area, I recommend checking it out and applying for it if you are into open source and the like. Here is the info about the residency->


Currently I am focusing on the idea of freeing up private corporate information streams. I’m expanding on and trying to formalize some of the ideas discussed in this post->


My application in process is a google doc. Of course, in the spirit of openness, here it is. Suggestions welcome! It is due this Friday the 15th.


Questions I am trying to keep in mind while writing:

Are the ideas good? Are the ideas well presented? Am I selling myself appropriately? The character count limits are quite short so keep that in mind when giving comments.  Thanks!

Intellectual property and evolution

we believe in evolution. evolution is survival. there is no “good”, “bad”, “true” or “false” only replication and mutation. success is simply a matter of what replicates and for one reason or another, mutations happen along the way. some mutations are beneficial, some not. in changing environments, mutations are essential to survival. Although some things can make it a really long time… (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coelacanth, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYOf2wIoxgo)

So what does this mean to us, living now, trying to figure it out?
No more smart/stupid value judgments. No more judging of pop culture, the american dream, gm, big banks, neocons, religious leaders or anything else? We are here to observe the replicators. We are here to work on mutations that might displace the current crop at the top. There is no good or bad. There is no ownership of ideas to impede either replication or mutation. We don’t know the answers. We are experimenting. We are mutating. We must work to reward the systems with the proper incentives. We just need to keep repeating ourselves in the business of making repeaters. We need to keep repeating each other.*

No limits on either replication or mutation? No intellectual property? No haggling over information of any sort? No scalable rewards? Everyone is a service employee?

is this our generation’s religion? the religion of letting go? the zen of informational openness? the power of true unconstrained parallel processing? worship of the process and the cloud of culture and information that hangs above and all around us? the democratization of publishing so individuals can broadcast as loud as corporations? easy, fast, and massive collaboration? loose networks of local and small? the disappearance of the term “theft” in regards to information? no more making money off of copies of things that are copied for free? informational commons? everything seen by many eyes and viewpoints to keep ourselves in check? all of us as teachers. all of us as students. learning models replace knowing models. sustainable business. true value added services. less debt. less leverage. less dependance on jackpots and lottery winnings. acceptance of randomness.
this is a kool-aid(tm) that we are drinking. are we fools?

information, formation, fabrications, for vacations, evacuation, e-vocation, evolution

(*) with slight modification of course.

Experts and the role of randomness in our lives…
March 27, 2009, 5:54 pm
Filed under: information, randomness | Tags: , , , ,

But do experts actually get it right themselves?

The expert on experts is Philip Tetlock, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley. His 2005 book, “Expert Political Judgment,” is based on two decades of tracking some 82,000 predictions by 284 experts. The experts’ forecasts were tracked both on the subjects of their specialties and on subjects that they knew little about.

The result? The predictions of experts were, on average, only a tiny bit better than random guesses — the equivalent of a chimpanzee throwing darts at a board.

“It made virtually no difference whether participants had doctorates, whether they were economists, political scientists, journalists or historians, whether they had policy experience or access to classified information, or whether they had logged many or few years of experience,” Mr. Tetlock wrote.

Indeed, the only consistent predictor was fame — and it was an inverse relationship. The more famous experts did worse than unknown ones. That had to do with a fault in the media. Talent bookers for television shows and reporters tended to call up experts who provided strong, coherent points of view, who saw things in blacks and whites. People who shouted — like, yes, Jim Cramer!

via Op-Ed Columnist – Learning How to Think – NYTimes.com.

More here.

and here.

And a great quote from Samuel Goldwyn (MGM). “If I had said ‘yes’ to all the projects I said ‘no’ to, and ‘No’ to all the projects I said ‘yes’ to, it would have probably come out the same.” via The Drunkard’s Walk.

Give Life. Work in the Public Domain.

Emancipate yourself from mental slavery.

We have copyright. We have patents. We have trademarks.

We have GPL, Creative Commons, and many others that keep lawyers in business.

We have Public Domain.

Why not choose Public Domain?

We believe in evolution. Evolution is replication and mutation. Public Domain maximizes potential for replication and mutation. Is this the best way for us to move forward? If you love something can you set it free?

More concrete measures from me on this within the next couple months. Make fun of me if I don’t.

Free Information. Is this where the right meets the left?
March 19, 2009, 12:08 am
Filed under: information, opensource | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

People often react to the story of “free information” or “no intellectual property” as something akin to communism or socialism. It’s true that with no intellectual property we would have a common resource of information. This common resource would benefit society as a whole. It could not be owned by any one person. No intellectual property would most definitely create a wonderful public resource.
But this is not just a plan for the left political wing. This is also what the right wing should want as well. The true conservative philosophy of “free markets” is free information. Currently our intellectual property laws are enforced by the government. No intellectual property means smaller government and a better reflection of the true costs of information holding and dispersal. With the internet, publishing is no longer an issue of note. It’s free and easy.

So can we rally both the right and the left to get rid of patents and copyrights? That is the goal.

No intellectual property. Build a public resource and a better free market.

Animal training and the design of self rewarding systems

sean says “unless you’re the boss, you’re playing by somebody else’s rules.” but we and many people we know have no interest in being the boss ourselves. so how do you, me, him, her, we, them, etc, change the rules?

How do we design flat and self-rewarding ecosystems?

Wikipedia is a self rewarding system. If you come to a page and the page has been vandalized, you can help the system and activate the revert function on the post. When you do this, you are rewarded with the information you came for. Clay Shirky, HCE book has a nice section on wikipedia.

So where to now?

Let’s go back to nytimes article on animal training and husbands. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=husband+animal+training

A great article. A snippet that summarizes pretty well.

I listened, rapt, as professional trainers explained how they taught dolphins to flip and elephants to paint. Eventually it hit me that the same techniques might work on that stubborn but lovable species, the American husband.

The central lesson I learned from exotic animal trainers is that I should reward behavior I like and ignore behavior I don’t. After all, you don’t get a sea lion to balance a ball on the end of its nose by nagging. The same goes for the American husband.

I was using what trainers call “approximations,” rewarding the small steps toward learning a whole new behavior. You can’t expect a baboon to learn to flip on command in one session, just as you can’t expect an American husband to begin regularly picking up his dirty socks by praising him once for picking up a single sock. With the baboon you first reward a hop, then a bigger hop, then an even bigger hop. With Scott the husband, I began to praise every small act every time: if he drove just a mile an hour slower, tossed one pair of shorts into the hamper, or was on time for anything.

Give it a read and try to convince yourself we are above animals. We like to give our civilization a little more credit than it may deserve. How do you give yourself a treat for riding the bicycle?