Adrian Cheng

Internet Versus Us strives to give users a literal feel into how much control they really have of their browser in their day to day surfing of the internet. Every day we visit websites and the internet behaves in ways unknown to us beneath the hood that are typically against our will. For example, it could be that when you log in to a particular site that your password is stored insecurely in the server, waiting for it to be grabbed by hackers who have knowledge to sieve that information, or a link that is disguised to take you somewhere you want to go, but redirects you to an advertisement. You install a trojan virus for visiting a site that plants it against your will, and your private information is being sapped by the vicious Internet. Internet Versus Us emulates this by giving your browsing webpage a "life" of its own, rejecting your every move and feel the loss of power and control over your web browsing experience. It tries to surface the unknown loss, fears, and irritation that you get from the internet going against you, which is realistic of how the technology of the web is in reality. You just do not realise it beneath the surface of the browser interface. Be afraid. Be annoyed. Struggle to tame the internet, or it shall tame you. http://internetvs.us

Natasha CirsianoNatasha Cirisano

The online world is strange yet familiar, scaring us as much as it entices us. Like Thomas Pynchon's atomic age novel, The Crying of Lot 49, we have entered a new era of technology that may seem hyper-efficient and reasonable, but has an undertone of paranoia and irrationality. The digital age carries with it similar fears to Pynchon's work: stalking, surveillance, secret societies, loss of identity, addiction, temptation, purposelessness, and dysfunction.  With these ideas in mind, I have created a story meant to symbolize the paranoias of the online experience. The elements and functions of the browser window are associated with their narrative counterparts. For example, chat room dialogues represent conversations, scrolling becomes synonymous with the passage of time, and usernames are as important as the names on birth certificates, or more. Though it is constructed of logical codes and interfaces, the world of my characters is far from organized, linear or even meaningful. I aim to break down the traditional rules of design and structure in the website to create a world that is both frustrating and tempting, comparing the online experience to that of my characters and of reading The Crying of Lot 49. When you arrive, open a page, make a choice. Travel through the web of links, pages, and entropy. Get lost. Go on. http://momentamidblasts.com

Kaley Farr

We are crazy about our cars—and always have been. We typically personify our automobiles while placing the woman (on display) as the thing to be objectified. In other words, while the automobile is often gendered (treating the vehicle as some special woman by referring to “it” as a “her”), we position the woman as an actual thing to be observed. Women in particular have taken up the role of phallic girl in order to capture the male gaze and feel empowered. Contrastingly, this functions as an illusion of power since the role is performed due to social pressure that fulfills the forms of a seemingly hegemonic , ideological governing force (a force that is permeated and amplified via the internet). These frames of acceptance have cultivated a hierarchy—one that bases an individual’s worth upon the number of “likes,” followers, friends, and even views one has. More particularly, women in the import scene (a car subculture) take part in this narcissistic act of overly indulging in the self by physically altering or distorting their bodies in order to be accepted by tuners (car enthusiasts) both off and online. It’s ironic yet important to recognize how the import scene has become increasingly centered on the physically altered female form rather than actual cars—transforming and transitioning cultural values and the falsehoods of beauty as the new norm. Thus, it’s difficult to believe in the integrity of the import scene and talk about responsibility when it’s heavily surrounded by desires which are focused on superficiality (power, greed, and image). Similarly, our intense love affair with social media has culminated a new and heightened level of self-love—shaping us just as much as we shape it—thereby complicating how we create, project, and perceive persona and our own human psyche. The connection between the import scene and social media has ultimately intensified the role of the male gaze in relation to the performance of the naked, altered female body. Almost formulaic in nature, the import scene and the net both create an overbearing pressure that corners one into conforming to act and participate in various activities for reasons that are outside oneself (transfiguring our bodies into ones that are docile). This sense of powerlessness channels us into socially constructed, ideological reservoirs of acceptance known as social media platforms (influencing us to have an increased, up-to-date presence on various sites). As women buy into the mythology that is the import scene, they are treated not as unique individuals, but as tools to be used. Overall, the role of phallic girl embodies our deep-seated cultural and emotional values which have become an integral part of the net experience. All of our romantic mythology associated with car culture has been mirrored and strengthened online. Serving as a change-agent to re-awaken and reconstruct the order of this subculture, Transfiguration of the Self seeks to recognize this puzzling spectacle, and capture the physical condition and obsession with the internet- import subculture relationship. http://www.transfigurationoftheself.com
Danielle Hruska
Supplied with technologies of the modern world, the possibilities of art-making have become endless. What was once restricted to pencil and paper is now a practice which involves video, music, and sharing through the internet. With my Internet Studio project I wanted to explore the possibilities of the internet as a medium and how I could relate it to my art. I found the internet to be useful in not only sharing, but in the manipulation of my drawings so that they may come to life using animated GIFs. The current popular function of animated GIFs on the web is humor. People create frames using photos and add captions in order to create an entertaining joke which the viewer can relate to. Since the increased popularity of the GIF, many tumblr sites have been created solely for the purpose of displaying these humorous GIFs. I wanted to explore the possibilities of GIFS for more artistic intentions besides humor.  I have created a series of animated GIFS which display my sketches in a more exciting and intriguing level; with movement. My project reveals the capabilities of the GIF to not only be a source of humor and entertainment but as a source of art in a way similar to stop-motion art which tediously forms itself frame by frame.  http://www-scf.usc.edu/~dhruska
Danièle Morkel
This website presents you (the viewer) with an Internet experience in a very direct and personal way. It draws from the Twitter activity of being able to “follow” someone, but puts this into a more literal scenario where the viewer is following a beautiful girl who is calling you to follow. The site jumps right into the video, almost giving you no choice but to follow. While viewers might want to follow someone on the Internet, this offers a more intriguing sense of actually doing so on the screen. Would you literally follow someone who’s going about their day and comment on their every move? This website puts you in the role of follower but also addresses the idea of aimlessly following someone where there is no apparent purpose, just the compelling urge to follow with an unspecified sense of urgency. These social networking bloggers don’t always have one direction in which they are taking their viewers and often do not give their followers an outcome or resolution. The woman in the video doesn’t seem to know exactly where she is going but she has the ability to keep your attention. She has a mysterious allure, she does not reveal where she is taking you, but she keeps you hooked with the promise of something to show you. Many people using a social networking site have a desire to have followers. These people wanting an online audience may also actively follow others on the web. We have created a phenomenon of projections following projections. http://www.followmefollowme.com

Sara Papirmeister

Scrollfacebook... is a Facebook page designed to create a unique experience while you are scrolling. Scrolling is a learned motion that all Internet users use and abuse. This site is supposed to take you out of the normal "Facebook" page experience and create an entirely different online ambiance. By scrolling downward (like we are conditioned to do on Facebook), a strobe-effect occurs. Music videos are placed throughout the site. Scroll and enjoy! To experience Scrollfacebook follow these four steps.

To experience Scrollfacebook follow these four steps.
1. Open Chrome
2. Go to https://www.facebook.com/mollyfain315 and log in to Facebook.
3. Copy:
(function () { var head = document.getElementsByTagName('head')[0];head.innerHTML+="<style> body { background:red; animation:myfirst 0.5s; -moz-animation:myfirst 0.5s; -webkit-animation:myfirst 0.5s; -o-animation:myfirst 0.5s; animation-iteration-count : infinite; -moz-animation-iteration-count : infinite; -webkit-animation-iteration-count : infinite; -o-animation-iteration-count : infinite; } @keyframes myfirst { 0% {background:red;} 25% {background:yellow;} 50% {background:blue;} 100% {background:green;} } @-moz-keyframes myfirst /* Firefox */ { 0% {background:red;} 25% {background:yellow;} 50% {background:blue;} 100% {background:green;} } @-webkit-keyframes myfirst /* Safari and Chrome */ { 0% {background:red;} 25% {background:yellow;} 50% {background:blue;} 100% {background:green;} } @-o-keyframes myfirst /* Opera */ { 0% {background:red;} 25% {background:yellow;} 50% {background:blue;} 100% {background:green;} } </style>"; }());
4. Type "javascript:" into the URL, followed by pasting the copied text above.
(You can activate this effect on any Facebook profile page).
Brandon Patrick
It's all about me! BDYSCN.com is an exploration of the self through transformation and observation both IRL and on the world wide web. LOOK AT YOU LOOKING AT ME LOOKING AT ME ! This project attempts to breakdown the perception that content outside of social media remains connected to the user producing content, determine the self, and blur the boundaries between the watcher and producer through the varying functions and platforms available on the internet. See more! Feel more! Be a transparent fantasy. Recognize yourself. Was it as good for me as it was for you? Can you see yourself in your making? Was your sublime realization satisfactory? I BET IT WAS! http://bdyscn.com/

Amber Pietrsyk
The Contemporary Jpeg
The Jpeg image is becoming more and more of a plastic object with an indeterminate ending and undefined beginning. As our online and offline realities become intertwined the Jpeg image is constantly being downloaded, appropriated, and uploaded to blogs, image banks, and social networking sites. I wanted to meditate on the plasticity of the Jpeg image by adding layers of tone and brightness adjustments, downloaded space desktop backgrounds, and previously photographed images to it. Throughout the project, the Jpeg image evolves to the point where it is no longer a representation of its original self but its own seperate image. No longer a simulation of its original self, the new Jpeg image is able to stand independently from its original self with its own reality and message. http://www-scf.usc.edu/~pietrzyk/


Kyle Tabuena-Frolli

The Visual Steinbeck reframes John Steinbeck’s brilliant literature for a web audience. It’s a collection of infographics—data-rich graphs, charts and illustrations—sometimes focusing on one work, other times spanning his entire career meant to set his work in history, writing locations, and writing pattern. It is meant to draw a reader into his style. He was rough-cut, honest, spare. This site hopes to reflect that. http://thevisualsteinbeck.com/


Saya Taniguchi

The Profile Picture Project explores how people choose to visually express themselves online by examining profile pictures used on social media sites. Profile pictures range from candid shots at home or at parties to professionally posed portraits. Through this project, I will be offering photo shoots catered to create an ideal online self by finding out how each person wants to portray themselves, in what setting, and on what internet platform? The concept of portraiture has changed with the widespread use of the Internet and social media. A portrait (form paintings to early photography) used to a means of leaving a legacy of sorts but now portraits are impulsive and uninhibited. This project explores the conscious decisions made to portray the ideal online self and examines vanity and voyeurism which are so closely tied to profile pictures and social media sites. http://profilepictureproject.com/


Miguel Tavarez

DNA or Terms of Service? The impact of the Internet on our sense of identity is a fact that can hardly be denied and one that arouses much discussion. Some wonder about the effects that networked culture will have on human evolution, going so far as to argue that the web has created us. The web introduces the possibility of our mutation and rebirth on its own terms in the form of various agreements about privacy and usage into which we enter at the very moment of our access. But this evolution of the self is advanced not only by the "Terms of Service" put forth by new media, but as we ignore most, focus on some, and actively challenge others we rearrange the limits of what is possible online (and for ourselves). In adapting these ideas to a literary form and publishing them on the web, the project addresses new conceptions of selfhoodas much as it explores how these changes affect our relationship to literature. Ours is a fluid, hyper-expressive self, for whom a medium of expression and its promise of a potential audience is always at hand. Longer literary forms interrupt the flow of pleasure derived from its immediate self-apprehension and from the sense of autonomy it has gained. Each form, literature and the Internet, has its power structure. By bringing them together one can't rid either of its power structure. http://www-scf.usc.edu/~tavarez/