non-LOSS'y Translator

a language based webwork by

Simon Biggs

A Little Pig Production

If you do not have Shockwave you might like to download it.

copyright 2004

Exhibited at

Festival International de Language Electronic, Sao Paulo, 2006
Page Space, Machine Gallery, Los Angeles, 2004

This piece was produced at the request of Braxton Soderman and Jason Brown of the writing program at Cal Arts, Los Angeles. They invited a number of artists and writers to collaborate in pairs on creating what they called "writing spaces". I took this to mean literally a place where somebody might want to write something. I had the good fortune to work on this with Loss Pequeño Glazier of the Digital Poetics program at the State University of New York, Buffalo.

In this piece the user can type whatever they wish into the application. The application takes this information and displays it in a more or less conventional manner. However, it does this in a number of different languages, including English, Greek symbols, the decimal ASCII codes that map keyboard keys to typography, the binary codes that equate to these, Morse Code and Braille. In all cases, except that of the Braille, the material is all remembered and displayed back to the user. All material written is also saved to the user's hard-drive, as it is typed in, so that they may keep a permanent record of that which has been written. The saved file is called "LossText" and you should be able to find it in the prefs or plug-ins folder of the browser you are using to run the application. You could find it using the FIND command of your computer.

As in other pieces, such as 'This is not a Hypertext' and 'Book of Books', this work also auto-resizes the text as required. If you choose to keep writing for long enough the text you are writing will eventually become reduced to 1 point fontsize, rendering all the different codes visually equivalent and equally unreadable (except for the Braille). Nobody has yet developed a Braille computer display so for those who would prefer to read their Braille with their sense of touch I regret I am unable to facilitate this option currently.