TITLE: iTunesLib vr. Highly d/Effective
DIMENSIONS: variable
MATERIALS: iTunes 9.2 (61), corrupt music library, raw data, snippets of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Dr. Stephen R. Covey
YEAR: 2011
PRICE: FREE; Instructions, TXT, & download available (here)

I love systems. While working on a project (for example; this one) I often catch myself becoming distracted by productivity porn. If I could augment my own systems-If I could only be more efficient, more organized, more effective-then I could really Get Things Done. The ideas would flow...Work would be a breeze... This tendency has lead to an extensive collection of self-help and motivational materials over the years. I enjoy exploring others' recommendations and rubrics for boosting success, though I can never seem to fully implement them. I think this is due to two things. First, there is an implicit guarantee of peace and logic. Second, there is the reality that my organization is messy, my methods are deconstructive, and my process is antithetical to the promise of perfection.

iTunesLib is a continuation/component of what's been called "Prepared Desktop" explorations. By fiddling with popular software and common operating system components, Prepared Desktop works playfully engage software as material. iTunes introduced a feature in 2007 called "Cover Flow", where album art would slide in 3D space across the screen. Later Apple announced that this feature would be added to the Leopard Operating System. I found the transference of this novel interaction style interesting and began using it in performances to confuse visual layers between applications and OS.

This version Highly d/Effective was created for the Hang In There show, a group show curated by Jason Lazarus, June 17 - July 02, 2011 at the Co-Prosperity Sphere, Chicago, IL. In iTunesLib vr. Highly d/Effective I'm attempting to dance with the grey line that exists betwixt my investigations and investments in motivational systems, organizational systems, and disordered nature of the systems I create and engage with.

iTunesLib is a realtime database installation consisting of a computer running Mac OS X, iTunes (7-11), a Library of ~1 second MP3s (the smallest lenth allowed) with unique metadata for the Name, Artist, Album, and Album Art. The unique metadata on each file (a series of random letters from a password generator) results in iTunes treating every file as it's own entity, or in this case, a unique musical unit. When played back, these units create a composition. This renders the modified/prepared instance of iTunes as an instrument/system. If the Library contains the range of the instrument/system, the playback of that range is the composition. Shuffling the playback of the database creates a constantly evolving, never ending, aleatoric composition.

The data in the Highly d/Effective version of iTunesLib is sourced and processed from the book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Dr. Stephen R. Covey. First published in 1989, the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People is self-help book organized around approaches to being effective in attaining one's goals. iTunesLib vr. Highly d/Effective is a playful Cover-Flow-Zoetrope remix/meditation of my relationship to that material.

DOWNLOAD THE LIB here (173.4MB ZIP) and replace your iTunes Library in ~/Music/iTunes/ (backup your old one if you want to keep your tunes...)

Play the Lib in shuffle mode. I like to turn on the iTunes announce option so there's another audio layer :)