Form

the Week of February 3, 2014
Photo of An Arduino

Welcome to our second issue, Form. In this issue, we interview the Level Playing Field Institute, look at the world of zine-making, explore online gentrification, discuss the politics of digitization and examine interactive art as a methodology of challenging cultural beliefs. We cover hardware hacking and the rise of feminist hackerspaces, Google Glass, hackathons for social change and several works at the intersection of tech and art.

A photo of the Double Union workspace. The floors are shiny, cement and a large square white table with a few chairs is in the center of the shot. On white shelves on the walls are plants, sewing equipment, and various supplies. A red workbench and plastic tubs full of tools are lined up near the walls.

The Rise of Feminist Hackerspaces and How to Make Your Own

Building community spaces, a brief history of feminist organization in tech, and what comes next.

This sketchnote is shown within an open notebook. It is black and white, and titled: Jen Myers, Developers Can't Design. It has a sketch of the speaker saying: I am a designer - One who thinks about the making of things. It has a progressive flow of how design works, with small sketches of users along the way, and questions that illustrate how to think about the design process: What emotion or personality are you communicating? Ask why. Do you do wireframes? On the opposite page, the sketchnote lays out: The Basic Tenants of Design. This includes repetition, which shows a number of small flowers lined up; balance, which shows two small dinosaurs next to each other; emphasis, which shows a dinosaur roaring; contrast, which shows a progression of increasingly dark tiles; and negative space, which shows stars in the sky and an arrow pointing to the space between them. Then there is an image of a person in a computer screen, reaching outside of the monitor with the title: The digital native designer. The sketchnote concludes with a sketch of a wireframe and the text: If you consider these the whole time… You can't just refactor design. In the very bottom there are a few people gathered around a box with a question mark, but what they are saying can't be made out.

Amplifying Voices

When every speaker on stage is a white guy, doing sketchnotes of what they're saying looks like betrayal.

A profile picture of the artist, turned to face an easel and canvas which she is finger-painting with her left hand. The canvas is heavily textured with what looks like small blocks in addition to lots of paint. In her right hand, she holds a palette covered with multi-colored blobs of paint, mainly blues and yellows. Her fingers and wrists are covered with paint. She is concentrating intensely on the painting.

My Tech Journey: From Art to Engineering and Getting Started in Silicon Valley

Not all paths to the tech industry are the same. One woman's story of the heartbreaks and break-throughs along the way.

Five Indigenous women standing next to each other smiling. They are from tribes across Montana and wearing powwow regalia called jingle dresses. All have two braids, and beadwork in the form of hair ties, leggings, moccasins, neckties, belts, and earrings.

There is No “We”: V-Day, Indigenous Women and the Myth of Shared Gender Oppression

The problem with the framing of sexualized violence as an issue that hurts all women equally is that it erases the experiences of Indigenous women.

Richards, the author, is taking a self portrait wearing Glass, with the backdrop of a conference. She is grinning.

Google Glass: Flipping the Script on Small Talk

How introverts can enjoy being social with technology. (Hint: It doesn’t involve looking down at your phone)

Picture of a small robot with rubber tank tread wheels and a circuit board on top.

Three Questions on the Hardware Revolution

Julia Grace on How to Hack Your World

A screenshot of The Nation's article on Toxic Twitter Feminism as it appears on their website. A tiny magazine in the top corner shows that this article was on the front page of the print subscription.

In Defense of Twitter Feminism

Call-out culture, gentrification on social media and the politics of feminist discourse online.

Elly Blue, the author of this piece, posing with a handful of issues of Taking the Lane, her zine about bicycling and feminism. Blue is grinning. In the background a sign for her publishing company is taped to a cinderblock wall.

What The Hell is Feminist Publishing?

Writing, Organizing and Distributing Community Zines

A large statue of Sir Arthur Doughty, taken to show the statue's full profile. Doughty sits on a chair, wearing a long flowing robe and dress shoes. The chair is on top of a large, decorative square cement pedestal, with this quote inscribed on the side: Of all national assets, archives are the most precious: they are the gift of one generation to another and the extent of our care of them marks the extent of our civilization. The Canadian Archives and Its Activities, Arthur G. Doughty. A paper sign is curled around his feet, placed by archivists and supporters, that reads: Save the National Archival Development Program.

The Politics of Digitization

History, archives and the problem with treating every problem as a tech problem.

Four LPFI students sit around a square black table covered with science equipment, including a holder for vials and a glass of water. The students are all wearing white lab coats and white gloves, and looking intently at the materials.

Interview with the Level Playing Field Institute

Model View Culture talks to Dr. Jarvis Sulcer, Executive Director of the LPFI.

Detail view of Rowe's 'Learning Feminine: sister' piece, showing a white art gallery wall, with three pink picture frames. The frames are filled with pink silicon, and a variety of ponytails and hair are hanging down from the frames to be styled by the visitor to the gallery.

Pink: Libby Rowe on Interactive Art

Botticelli, 26 pairs of panties, hundreds of broken tea cups and challenging what it means to be feminine.