Wi-Fi Colour in Real World and Cyberspace: Cyborg Identity in Urban Wi-Fi Networks

By Jung-Hua Liu.

Published by The Arts Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Wi-Fi Technology is popular in big cities around the world, such as London, Taipei, Hong Kong, Chicago and New York. The technology shapes different urban landscape from our daily street view. The wireless connection method also brings human body beyond the skin into cyberspace to become a cyborg body. This project adopts anthropology’s “house society” study for kinship to analyze and represent the new urban landscape and cyborg identity, because Wi-Fi access point is a metaphor of house from the view of residency and sharing resource. The final representations are three types of colourful web page which translate Wi-Fi access point information into colours: urban Wi-Fi landscape, single Wi-Fi access point and personal Wi-Fi routes. The artworks aim to rethink cyborg concept in daily and pervasive Wi-Fi technology and the relation between human social-cultural background and technology.

Keywords: Wi-Fi, Wireless, Cyborg, Anthropology, Metaphor, House Society

International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 4, Issue 1, pp.273-290. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 3.399MB).

Jung-Hua Liu

Practice-Led Doctoral Candidate, School of Fine Art, History of Art & Cultural Studies, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK

I majored in anthropology and archaeology in B.A. and M.A. in Taiwan. The interest in kinship and identity begins from my cultural anthropology fieldwork in a rural village where there are many international marriage in southern Taiwan. The immigrants bring their native kinship concept into Taiwan family and the house is often referred to the explanation of kinship. In my M.A. archaeological fieldwork in an abandoned aboriginal village and the interview with the descendants of the village, the house is also the main idea of identity in the physical remains and the living villagers. With the rapid development of Wi-Fi in Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, I am interested in how new material culture and technology interact with our life and identity, so I hope to apply anthropology and archaeology to analyze and represent the observation.

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