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Themesicon: navigation pathMapping and Texticon: navigation pathBeyond the Archive

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did not originally mean an empire, a territory, but rather the extension, the reach of commanding powers, depending technically on the ways and channels of communication, streets, postal systems). Thus the «mapping gaze» neglects time-based media, that is the von Neumann computer architecture of sequential data processing, dissimulating its operative, temporal character in favor of spatial images, maps. Furthermore, the cartographic paradigm neglects acoustic options of navigating data (a plea for sonification, with sound itself a time-based aesthetic). The question remains: Are there objects which are not mappable at all? What about «mapping time»? What about the option of genuinely «mapping sound» by means of acoustic signals; this is symptomatic for the supremacy of the optical over the sonic. Acoustic mapping would relate to «mapping time.» Sound is already used to create an acoustic shape of the Internet, an alternative to icons. Since the Net is dynamic, processual, it can more readily be mapped acoustically than visually. Heinz von Foerster once named «the enormous task of mapping an almost indefinite variety of signals into a few modes of behavior.» [17]



In his essay on «other spaces» (heterotopics), Michel Foucault declared that the nineteenth century had been dominated by its concern with time, whereas the twentieth century was concerned with space. The twenty-first century, though, will be concerned with topologies: mathematics, vectorization of space, coupled with the materiality of cables, circuits, processors. Foucault finally acknowledged these implications of computing. [18] Thus we arrive at n-dimensional data clouds: a complete geometrization and mathematization of all previous metaphorical «archaeologies of knowledge.»

It was Immanuel Kant who once identified the «mathematical sublime»; nowadays data visualization corresponds to the sublime, making visible the invisible of digital data processing (Lev Manovich). Art works like «Polar» by Carsten Nicolai and Marko Peljhan (1991) refer to the changing process of invisible information with an idea stemming from the novel «Solaris» by Stanislav Lem (1972) and the film adaptation by Andrej

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