worms.txt 2017


Networked installation for worms, rotting vegetables, custom electronics, custom Python code, desktop PC. 2017

Serpent Lucifer, how do you do?

Of your worms and your snakes I’d be one or two;

For in this dear planet of wool and of leather

‘Tis pleasant to need neither shirt, sleeve, nor shoe,

And have arm, leg, and belly together.

[Thomas Beddoes. 1850]

Over the last year, a container of worms dieting on rotting coffee grains and waste vegetables have composed an ever-lengthening French language text which now numbers over 9000 pages. The compost worms have been provided with an electronic and software interface to a virtual typewriter. Tiny electrical changes within the worm's compost, which correspond to the worm's activity and movement allow the worms to writhe and wriggle through a French language probability table to actively steer the generation of this piece of writing; worms.txt.

worms.txt is presented as an installation with desktop PC and concrete worm housing, an excerpt of worms.txt and as an ongoing work of writing at: http://www.hauntedbyalgorithms.net/

In this instance letter-to-letter probabilities were generated using based on an analysis of the text of Lautreamont's Les Chants de Maldoror.

worms.txt has been exhibited in 2017 as part of:

With thanks to Jeff Guess and Gwenola Wagon.

Further images


[Darling Foundry, Montreal]



Author: root

Created: 2018-08-16 Thu 11:23

Emacs 25.1.1 (Org mode 8.2.10)