Columbus 2.0 (Sevilla, 2008)

Columbus 2.0 is an online, real time news visualization in a form of an interactive public space installation consisting of a projection on the historical walls of Alcazar in Sevilla and a navigational device (ships steering wheel) used as an interface.

Today we face the exponential growth of information. By 2011, the digital universe will be 10 times the size it was in 2006. We all experience the uncertainty when we try to navigate through the information sea as Columbus must have experienced once he embarked the unknown waters of the endless ocean.

It was the year 1492, which marks the beginning of two diametrically different events. Christopher Columbus‘ departure from Spanish mainland is the starting point of the modern age and in the same time it is the ending point of the two cultures that had shaped the Spanish and European evolvement for centuries. Jews were forced to leave Spain and Moslems lost their last caliphate on the Iberian Peninsula. It was the unique mix of Islamic, Christian and Jewish impact that enriched and catalyzed the development of science, technology and culture of that time.
Columbus 2.0 is an interactive navigational system that transforms the Google news into information waves forming an illusion of dynamic wavy 3D text space reminding us of an ocean. The user have the opportunity to steer the ships steering wheel and so navigate through the information sea and experience the limitless information tsunamis and imaginative borders between different languages of the world. The appearance and disappearance of those languages in the information sea remind us also of our own history in which the presence or absence of a language always indicates the rise, fall or even extermination of a culture in different times and places.

Columbus 2.0 is an uncertain journey of a human kind through the past, presence and the future.
The project was developed together with Andrej Jungnickel, Dirk Reinbold and Andreas Siefert.