Thanks to the documents leaked by Edward Snowden, it is now clear that to be online is to be monitored and observed. What’s not clear, however, is what it means to be online. The online and offline, digital and physical worlds are not as distinct as they once were. Portable connected devices such as smartphones, and the objects that make up the internet of things are blurring the boundaries.


On/Off/In[line] explores the space of the network, hunting for its inhabitants, the access points and devices that create leaks between the digital and physical worlds, bringing with them the network’s ubiquitous surveillance. The device monitors their locations, calculating their distance and providing a sense of the shape of the local network and the presence of potential surveillance. Pulling in their communications it directly sonifies the bytes, highlighting the cacophonous amount of information transmitted.


Presented as an installation the device works live, responding to the location in which it is placed, as well as the devices that accompany the visitors.

Part of ‘Possessed Objects’, December 2014.