26 November 2010

Web Feelings and Illusions

Have you ever wondered how the World Wide Web feels?

Jonathan Harris has asked himself that exact question and has designed tools  which search and analyse how people around the world feel at the moment they contribute data to the WWW.  Harris is also interested in stories, especially modern mythology and has developed a site called Universe  where you may explore a wide range of contemporary modern myths. 

According to Harris, " Universe is a system that supports the exploration of personal mythology, allowing each of us to find out own constellations, based on our own interests and curiosities.  Everyone's path through Universe is different, just as everyone's path through life is different." Universe allow you to explore connections, patterns and themes which make up our daily lives.

I include one of Jonathan Harris's talks (from
 Ted Talks) where he makes a presentation on the Web's Secret Stories:

Story telling takes on many forms and formats. From oral story telling to digital stories, today we have the widest range of tools to express our personal and cultural stories. For some people, however, story telling remains in the field of illusions and fiction.

Illusions may be expressed with stories but also visually. And that is what Akiyoshi Kitoaka has collected in his page of Illusions. One of his most talked about illusions is Rotating Snakes.  (If you tend to feel dizzy or sick, please note that there is a warning of "anomalous motion illusion" which is included on Akiyoshi Kitoaka's Illusion Pages. )

I made this short video with Jing, which is a great tool to download for taking screenshots and videos. 

Trend Hunter is another interesting site which collects optical illusions from the world of interior design to street art, displaying how creative optical illusions are applied from furniture items to architecture. And,  if you are interested in how to use  colours and the history of colours, why not have a look at The Colour Experience, which is a virtual colour museum?

If optical illusions do not appeal to you, why not look closely around your world and discover inspiration in your surroundings? The National Geographic offers a wealth of treasures for you to explore. Can you spot the natural illusion in this image below?

Feelings, myths, illusions. All are part of our daily lives. 

What web tools can you use to express stories which surround you? Will you choose a digital story or a visual image? 

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