Inclusive Digital Laboratory for Experimental Art (IDLE) is an inventive and participatory project based on the physical venue Studio 207 in Bergen, digitally enhanced as a virtual venue. Through the Virtual Gallery, audiences and artists can interact and remotely control the venue’s audiovisual devices via the Internet, thereby impacting the physical space without being physically present. In this way IDLE merges the virtual and physical space, creating a uniquely digitally enhanced art experience.

IDLE consists of an IDLE virtual gallery, mimicking the physical Piksel Studio 207 and the IDLE IoT system, lights, screen and sound system controlled by internet (Internet of Things system)

The IDLE initiative aims to enable interaction and the creation of fresh artistic experiences for everyone, eliminating the necessity of being physically present. As an Inclusive Digital Platform, IDLE serves as a playground where art enthusiasts can engage with exhibited artworks and live performances, interact with friends and other visitors, tap into their own creativity, and explore innovative gadgets.

In the cyber salon, visitors can interact with each other using various methods. In the central and right lateral areas, visual “actuators” trigger visuals on different screens, allowing users to blend their favorite sketches and move around the room to enjoy live visual performances. In the “street” and the left room, users can interact with elements to create music, collaboratively playing a sound performance. By moving their avatars close to the virtual elements, users can tune sound effects, mimicking the dynamics of a physical room or real-world environment.

Virtual Instruments are abstract instruments in the virtual space that can be musical or visual. The Virtual Instruments operate by cleverly considering the positions of avatars in the space and/or their interactions with one another. Inside IDLE Virtual Gallery Flor de Fuego and Blaz Pavlica have created a virtual instrument in the form of “electronic elements, resistances and capacitors” triggering hydra instances/sketches (visual instruments). These avatars interact with the projections in the physical space. Visitors can manipulate these “elements” in the virtual gallery, changing both visual aesthetics and lighting in both virtual and physical realms. Sound instruments are designed according to the Strudel principles, enabling visitors to play together. Each cylinder focuses on specific types of sounds, and filters are applied to each “torus.” The avatars’ positions modify the application of these filters. Sound instruments have been created by Malitzin Cortés and Iván Abreu.

IoT, short for Internet of Things, refers to the interconnected network of devices and the technology enabling communication between devices and the cloud, as well as among the devices themselves.

Within the context of IDLE, the IoT system has been incorporated into the physical studio through features such as lights and a sound system that can be controlled via the virtual gallery known as Piksel Cyber Salon. This integration allows visitors in the virtual gallery to exert a tangible influence on the physical venue, creating a seamless blend between the virtual and the real world.

Moreover, the IoT systems empower artists located elsewhere to engage with the venue more actively, for instance during virtual performances from a remote location.

The IoT system has been programmed using only free and open-source technologies and every developing step is published in a local wiki. This open documentation can be used to facilitate other venues to integrate IoT technologies in their spaces.

Respectful Communication: Treat all participants with kindness, courtesy, and respect. Avoid offensive language, discrimination, or harassment based on race, gender, age, sexual orientation, religion, or any other characteristic.

Appropriate Content: Share only content that is appropriate for all audiences. Refrain from posting offensive, explicit, or inappropriate material, including hate speech or any form of violence.

Privacy and Consent: Respect the privacy of others. Do not share personal information without explicit consent. Obtain consent before recording or taking screenshots during video interactions.

Mindful use of sound/volume In our cyber salon, we encourage thoughtful consideration of sound and volume levels, especially when using microphones. Remember that the sound carries within the digital space, impacting the experience of other avatars based on their proximity. Please use headphones and adjust your microphone settings to an appropriate volume to avoid unnecessary disruption to the cyber salon’s atmosphere. Being mindful of how your audio may affect others enhances the overall experience for everyone in the virtual space.

Compliance with Laws: Abide by all relevant laws and regulations while interacting in the cyber salon.

Initiated by Piksel in 2022, the IDLE project involves international partners and experts in artistic and technological practices. IDLE development team is integrated by CNDSD, Malitzin Cortés and Iván Abreu, APO33, Jenny Pickett, Julien Ottavi, Romain Papion, Alexander Crawford, Flor de Fuego and Blaz Pavlica, and Martin E. Koch. Piksel team: Gisle Frøysland, Maite Cajaraville and Ina Glosli.

IDLE, operating as a free-to-use platform, places the responsibility on users to adhere to the code of conduct (found here) and promptly report any instances of inappropriate behavior. It is important to note that Piksel assumes no responsibility for actions taken by other visitors within the IDLE digital gallery: Piksel Salon. Users are encouraged to engage responsibly and contribute to a positive virtual environment.

Last Status Report
IDLE at ISEA 23 / Toolkit of Care
IDLE at Spanish National TV “Metrópolis”
IDLE at International Conference of Live Coding 2024