Although the initial debut of SL at Subtle Technologies was rather disappointing, a few evening performances and some personal conversations with the artists involved revealed some interesting and interpretations of SL and the whole uncritical hype around it.
Quite interesting (and silly, but for good reasons) was Jeremy Baily’s “War Mail”. his attempt to force the rather reluctant audience to send an email “collaboratively” using a totally ridiculous futuristic interface was far from successful. later on, he explained that his was a comment on useless and too elaborate interfaces. thus, his apparent lack of success really demonstrated his point.
one of the problems emerging from network technologies is the failure to accept and to exploit their fallibility. if War Mail is a failing technology becasue it is too complicated and too futuristic,Chris Chafe’s network performances are a success becasue they exploit the noises, the delay and the little glitches of the physical infrastructure of the network. the piece performed with his trio (He in Toronto, and Pauline Oliveros and Ione in Banff) enetertained the audience with a spoken word with accordeon performance.