Friday, September 18, 2009

EyeWriter is why P2P works

The power of community blows my mind.

I attended the evening portion of CaseCamp in Toronto last night. Kudos to the folks who run it. The principles by which they drew a crowd together were bang on! They crossed hierarchies, industries and levels of expertise. Artists, IT, business came together in an ‘unconference’ to talk about social media as peers in the exploration. Peer-to-peer mentoring and networking at its finest.

And then came the icing on the cake.

I went to hear presentations on social media – I saw a combination of a big companies talking about how they’re using it to make money; small companies talking about the ‘democracy’ of the web; and then one artist stood up and showed us this…

Zach Lieberman – artist, programmer and self-proclaimed preacher of the power of art to change the world – gave a demo of Eye Writer last night. A community of folks from the Graffiti Research Lab, openFrameworks and The Ebeling Group have made a low-cost drawing device that tracks the eye movements of ALS patients, freeing them to express themselves in ways that can change both our physical landscape and influence what it means to support and share in a democratic community.

Affordable to all. Developed by a diverse peer community. Shared openly. Explored creatively and without traditional boundaries. Art, science, computers and some very cool people coming together to change the world.

PS. Check out Zach’s and his communities and their other projects - the iQ font and upcoming work with Sick Kids Hospital and a renovation http://

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