A+ for pretension
There is a tendency to pontificate needlessly about the social significance of “art” pieces that are unable to stand on their own. Take for example the WiFi.Bedouin which according to it’s site:
[This access point] is not the web without wires. Instead, it is its own web, an apparatus that forces one to reconsider and question notions of virtuality, materiality, displacement, proximity and community. WiFi.Bedouin is meant to suggest that what are often considered two entirely separate realms - virtual and physical worlds - are actually a much more entangled hybrid space. (emphasis mine)
Essentially the WiFi.Bedouin is a mobile wifi access point that doesn’t connect to the internet. It does have some of it’s own services, but people don’t connect to hotspots to get on the chat room in someone’s backpack, they get connect to check their email, or look something up. Give them a hotspot that doesn’t let them on the internet and you’ll simply piss them off. Which last time I checked didn’t count as reconsidering and questioning notions of virtuality, materiality, displacement, proximity and community.
Of course, those who put useless hotspots in backpacks just to piss people off probably don’t get written about in academic journals very often.
Xian 11:58 PM, 06.20.06 - p-link