Week 12 – Aggregation

This week, each of us are required to do some research on the different types of publishing and select one as our favorite. We will then have to present it to the rest of the class as a “show and tell” in our tutorial for the week. But before i go into detail about the publishing that i chose, i would like to reflect on Week 11’s lecture on “Distribution, Aggregation and the Social”.

I really liked the examples that Andrew provided to explain the concepts of distribution and aggregation. They were useful in helping me understand how the two different terms fit into publics and publishing. Andrew used the concept of breathing to explain them in the lecture. Breathing out and in is comparable to distribution and aggregation respectively. This concept was so simple that it enabled me to understand the terms almost immediately.

The publishing that i chose to present in class this week will most certainly include the concepts of distribution and aggregation as well. I selected a project done by Kelli Anderson, an artist and designer from the United States. This project is called the “Paper Record Player”, a “booklet-style” wedding invitation that also allows recipients to play a tune based on a flexidisc record just by following a few simple steps. Here is a video demonstration of her project:

An extract from Kelli’s blog on how the “Paper Record Player” works:

“In the booklet-style invitation, a bit of paper-folding amplifies the sound of a sewing needle moving along the grooves of a flexidisc record. The hand-spun record yields a garbled, but scrutable listening of an original song by the couple. It requires a bit of tinkering and folding —effectively championing the inner science-nerd kid in the recipient. The whole thing serves as an interactive packaging for the song—which can be experienced on the paper record player, unscrewed + set on a regular turntable, or enjoyed online (for the non-nerds and/or audiophiles out there.)…The resulting booklet is comprised of a cover, two inner pages, a letterpressed band (with instructions and a tear-off RSVP postcard), and a flexdisc on a screwpost. The recipient bends the second page of the booklet back to create a tented ‘arm’. With the needle placed, they then carefully spin the flexidisc at 45 RPM (ish) to hear the song. The sewing needle travels the length of the song and produces the sound. Its vibrations are amplified by the thin, snappy paper to which it is adhered.”

As mentioned by Kelli, the couple who got married had a common love for music. They have even collaborated to produce songs together. As the tune that is featured in the wedding invitation is also written by them, i guess this can be an example of “aggregating experience”. The tune that is heard from the booklet is the result of the phases and processes that the couple had to experience to produce the original song.

Once copies of these wedding invitations are made, they are distributed to everyone who are invited so as to inform them about the occasion. The information that is contained in the invitation will then be aggregated by the people who receive it. For example, some may focus more on the record player by paying attention to its rhythm and lyrics, while others may be more interested in the design and overall structure of the invitation booklets.

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