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Themesicon: navigation pathGenerative Toolsicon: navigation pathSoftware Art
walser.php (

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experiment, practically no-one was interested. Although the artists published an easy-to-follow guide to disabling the filters, only a very small percentage of those affected took the time to make a simple adjustment in order to regain access to unfiltered information. [8]

My second example, «walser.php»,, and «makewalser.php» by Gnutenberg, is a form of political literary [9] software, or more specifically anti-copyright activist software and was developed as a reaction to one of the largest literature scandals in Germany since 1945. The file name walser.php is not only an ironic reference to walser.pdf, an electronic version of Martin Walser’s controversial novel sent by the Suhrkamp publishing house via e-mail and later recalled; it is a php-script that takes 10,000 lines of source code and uses the php-interpreter to generate an ACSII text version of Walser’s Tod eines Kritikers (death of a critic). While the php source code does not contain the novel in visible or readable form and can thus be freely


distributed and modified under the GNU General Public License, it may only be executed with the written permission of Suhrkamp. [10] While Espenschied and Freude's experiment on filtering and censorship of Internet content points out software’s practically infinite potential to control (and be controlled), walser.php offers a practicable solution with which to handle the commercial restrictions, in particular, that seek to hinder freedom of information through digital rights management systems (DRM). Whereas insert_coin temporarily makes a dystopic scenario reality by manipulating software, with walser.php develops genuinely utopian "countermeasures in the form of software." [11] These projects are generative in the best sense of the word. And yet neither insert_coin nor walser.php perfectly fits the definitions of generative art as they are currently used in the design field. Philip Galanter, who I have already quoted and is surely among the most prolific generative art theorists at present, defines generative art as a process that contributes to the creation of a completed work of art. Celestino Soddu, Director of the Generative Design Lab at the Politecnico di Milano

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