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Sarah Friend
Artist

Toronto
July 11, 2018

Sarah Friend is an artist and software engineer who works at a large blockchain development studio. When not doing that, she creates games and other interactive experiences. Her practice investigates murky dichotomies – like those between privacy and transparency, centralization and decentralization, and the environment and technology – with playfulness and absurdist humour. She is a proud Recurse Center alum, and has recently presented at Transmediale in Berlin, Ethereal Summit in NYC, and NorthSec in Montreal. This weekend she is thrilled to be part of the 2018 Vector Festival – opening on Thursday July 12th at InterAccess – and Our Networks, a conference about all aspects of the peer-to-peer web.

1. Frog Fractions



"Revolutionary! The absolute best way to teach your child about fractions!”
Frog Fractions is an educational game about fractions that requires enabling Flash and could not possibly be more worth it. Play it and consider that maybe everything you thought you knew about game design is wrong.

2. Universal Basic Income



Universal Basic Income is the idea – popular in many forms and surprisingly bi-partisan – that everyone should be provided with enough money to live, universally, regardless of any qualification or clause. There are many different ideas for the “how” of it, but the “what” is surprisingly similar. In a for-profit world, everything either becomes a for-profit activity or exists in a state of constant refusal. It's not only exhausting; it unnecessarily constrains the set of ideas and activities most people will ever get to explore. I am excited and curious about the ways we can re-imagine our monetary system to not only be more equitable, but perhaps more simply and profoundly to allow our frameworks for what is "valuable" to become more flexible – and really ours.

3. Blue Screen of Death



I collect pictures of it. Punctures in the seamlessness, small moments where the digital underbelly bubbles up through the spectacle and mewls for attention. As an engineer, I promise you, nothing ever “just works.”

4. Solarpunk


Vincent Callebaut, Asian Cairns, Sustainable Megaliths for Rural Urbanities, Shenzhen China

Solarpunk is a science fiction genre and lifestyle engaged in imagining a post-fossil fuel utopic future. We're confronted constantly with bleak versions of degrowth and get stuck endlessly parroting Fredric Jameson: "it has become easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism." But we seldom think our way out of the box. There's a good case to be made that in order to move forward, we need not just compelling, but also optimistic visions of the future. If this civilization hopes to move past the fossil fuel era, and more so, to muster widespread support for making the change, we need to be able to imagine a world without fossil fuels that people would actually want to live in.

5. Memes


Sarah Friend

The perennial obsession, both escapist and tactical. A shared symbolic language that arose on the internet and has become complex enough to discuss itself. What more do you want?

 

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