Mirko Tobias Schäfer / Assistant Professor
University of Utrecht Department for Media and Culture Studies

realtime generation

The demoscene grows out of the computer game culture of the 1980s. When cracking the copy protection of generally overpriced computer games, the gained storage space on the floppy disk was used to save an animated file displaying names of the crackers, shout-outs to the scene and greetings to friends. Over time the animated files became more and more sophisticated and demonstrating coding skills became the main purpose. The emerging demoscene constituted its own media, so called diskmags, its own conventions, the demo parties, and developed genuine aesthetic and social codes.

As early as in 2001 [d]vision featured the demoscene and hosted demo scene screenings. The festival electronic kindergarten, dedicated to computer game culture of the 1980s perceived the demoscene as continuous framing of an emerging media practice. What started out as a subculture related to cracking and warez developed into an acknowledged cultural practice with their own ways of representation and social organization. Many cultural values developed within the computer subcultures are affecting the way we perceive technology, use digital media, and organize collaborative labour. With this year's festival, [d]vision has created a platform where the realtime generation and a broad audience will meet. The craft and art of coding demos erupts and demands representation right in the middle of Vienna's most posh cultural venue. The Museumsquartier will serve as projection space for a daily screening of realtime animated visuals. Surprisingly, the demoscene has not received much of attention yet. Let's hope that realtime generation sheds more light on an amazing, dynamic and incredibly productive scene and their work.

Date July 2008 Category News

[d]vision, the Vienna International Festival for Digital Culture is back with a new festival. Realtime generation is entirely dedicated to the demoscene and realtime animated visuals. Since last year the dvisionaries and their new director Regina Webhofer have been preparing this year's festival with a series of smaller events to present demos and outstanding coders to a broader audience outside the dynamic demo scene sphere. In close collaboration with the scene, [d]vision has set up a full scale festival with an exhibition, demo screenings, lectures, and panel discussions. And the popular nerd venue Werkzeug H hosts a daily demo lounge. After this packed program the festival features a demo party on which scene members from all over Europe compete for coding the best demo.

The festival takes place from July 4 to July 20 at Museumsquartier Vienna, Werkzeug H,and  Metalab.
Program and information at [d]vision.

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