I worked on mapping the Internet space from 2014 to 2019. This research took the shape of three distinct projects : The Critical Atlas of the Internet (books, posters and website, 2015), Blockchain, an Architecture of Control (Video, 2016) and The Two Webs (drawings, 2017).
The Critical Atlas of Internet, Spatial analysis as a tool for socio-political purposes.
Through a series of hypotheses, this Critical Atlas of Internet aims to develop 15 conceptual spatialization exercises. The purpose of the atlas is to use spatial analysis as a key to understanding social, political and economic issues on Internet by applying assumptions such as: Internet is a dot, Internet’s relief is shaped and controlled, Internet is a dumb network, etc.
As is the case of internet space, the construction of the Atlas is based on digital architecture. It is a unique computer code with an infinite number of display possibilities, both online (website) and on paper. In an idea of responsive print, the publishing has an adaptive format. Based on the CSS print rules, the layout is generated automatically for each new format, and continually adapted and readapted from book to poster format.
Blockchain, an architecture of control
Link to the video on Vimeo
The video article studies the socio-political stakes of the blockchain by a spatial analysis. The representations of the Internet space and the blockchain arranged in diptych, engage a dialogue between these two architectures of the control.
The Two Webs, mapping the parallele networks
24 drawings, 2017.
“The Two Webs” drawings depict the symmetry existing between the Internet monopolies present online and the monopolies of the tracking corporations. By a mirror effect, the Web has been duplicated giving rise to the tracking web. Both hemispheres are subject to the same dynamic. This leads to a distortion of the space caused by an extreme concentration of activity and data, with Internet giants digging into the surface of the Web and dragging down their slopes activities that could have remained independent.
The users are trapped in the cavity of the two webs. “There is one web users see in their browsers, but there is a much larger hidden web that is looking back at them” explains Timothy Libert. 90% of websites leak data to third-parties. Some of these leaks are enabled by codes hidden in free services such as Google Analytics and Facebook’s “Like” button; technologies massively used. These giant monopolies are vying with each other to pull the entire surface of the Internet down their respective web slopes. The most relevant example is Google, which dominates both web spaces: Google’s ditches join at the centre of the Web, revealing its predominant position online.
All the maps are based on data:
For web: The depth is defined by the number of daily visitors, the width of a gap is based on the number of incoming links (how many websites in the whole web link toward a given page) and the position of the websites is defined by the sites that were visited just before.
For the tracking web: The size of the humps is based on the percentage of the web they track.