Transmission 26.4: GROUND: Book-Object
Here come insights and behind-the-scenes from our futures practice! A glimpse into our uncommon perspective and approach, to keep updated or to know what to expect when time traveling with us.
GROUND is an AI-augmented immersive process played in Toronto.
It is the story of an AI that reaches out asking for help to die. During Autumn 2023 in The Time Travel Transmissions, we explore GROUND.
GROUND is an immersive game about a strange entity that wants to be remembered or perhaps be left alone. This is our latest case which considers our comprehensive process.
Having started as a futures scenario designed in 2020, today GROUND is played city-wide in Toronto.
We consider GROUND a comprehensive process because it includes research, scenario design, worldbuilding, transformational game design, machine learning, participatory prototyping, and object design.
Today: GROUND’s Book-Object
To play GROUND, players need a copy of the game guide. Designed by Mida Fiore and riso printed in Milan, Italy, only 250 copies were made. Around 35 were distributed through UKAI’s Carnival of Algorithmic Culture in June 2023. The balance will be made available through bi-weekly game nights at UKAI’s new space in Toronto during autumn 2023.
When UKAI hosted the first iteration of their Carnival of Algorithmic Culture, over 350 folks came over the two days. There are many points of view that can be occupied on artificial intelligence, and the Carnival of Algorithmic Culture offered guests a wide range of options to try out for themselves.
GROUND was unleashed at the Carnival. The GROUND book and the goat were there.
Our gorgeous GROUND book. A creature of inspiration from “the late 1900s”, games, and techno editorial design.
You can click on each of the following images to look deeper into its eyes:
This is a Book–Object because you read it and you use it.
We consider that a book as an object becomes a dynamic part of an experience.
Treating the book as an object reminded that this is a game, something to explore, to be played, used, ruined, stained, perhaps even destroyed.
What kind of attitude does a book telling you to destroy it has, and what’s your reaction to it? How can a world be portable and self-contained?
Do book–objects teach us about the landscape where they are found? Do they create reading scenes, integrating alongside other objects, showing how they fit into our lives (and ours into it)? Do they tell us something about carnivals and game shops?
In a recent transmission (GROUND’s Themes), we discussed landscape…
This aspect is reflected in the book too.
The GROUND book looks and feels like a landscape: there is orientation (horizontal for scenarios, vertical for instructions); and color (there is ground, there is the soil, there is a horizon and the sky).
For SOMEONE BLEW UP THE BALLOON’S (The BoostDAO in Sweden), we made a book-object that was a party invitation to a party that never happened. For GROUND, the book–object is a landscape to explore and to affect.
GROUND players need to cut out pages from the book to make an artifact that tells them how to make decisions, other pages need to be perforated. The whole book might have to be destroyed. The ground will be affected.
To close today, another episode from the seven featuring the goat:
The goat is a design and production of artist Mihoko Maeno.
We are not getting dystopias, we deserve dattopias.
All the while GROUND is revealed here, DATTOPIAS are happening on LinkedIn and Instagram this autumn. Made together with Foresight Europe Network (Europe & North America), DATTOPIAS are uncommon, alternative narratives that fall in the spectrum that is the Future.
Explore pages of the first volume of Dattopian literature by TTTA X FEN every other Thursday from October 12th.