COMMENTS ON GIAN NOTES ON MEETING ME
I really like this collage that Gian did before our meeting through the Icom.
I feel Gian captured the importance of my hometown (the towers in the background) and also my link with Dublin in the form of the map of the city centre. Also the paintings in the background and my new digital works make me feel appreciated in my artistic side. That is really nice as the artistic side is usually quite personal and sometime is difficult to present to other people, fearing to be misunderstood.
This second collage has more elements. Gian incorporated the cinema (which is one of my favourite things!) trinity college, where I am studying for the PhD. A map of Egypt where I spent part of my childhood while my face fades more in the background. As he said in his e-mail, there is a sense of realizing how complex a person and how long does it actually take to know someone even just a little bit.
From the notes Gian sent me about myself Iíd say just one thing I donít completely recognize and is walking around outside in the nature. It funny because I am not a mad fans of outdoors , but I do like walking a lot, but rather in the city!
I found Matt impressions on myself very interesting. I didnít realize I was laughing so much for example! I felt we had a much better chance of really starting to know each other because we were in the same space at the same time, so we had more time for real interaction. Matt has a very calm way of interacting, not too many questions, which is great and just being together. I realized how much we actually communicate with little gestures or expressions like glancing and lifting eyebrows etc., or just habits in doing things in a certain way.
I havenít experience any interface so far that can actually work as efficiently as real time real life encounters in communicating the richness of the exchange between living creatures!
With Gian (the distant friend), as he noticed as well, I think we had an easier start with the email, because not knowing each other very well I felt it was less intrusive and felt more at ease. WE also sent each other photographís that we used to do a visual portrait of each other. That was the best way for me top express myself due to my background.
When we met through the iCom I didnít feel too comfortable and that had nothing to do with the person I was meeting, as we got along very well, but the interface was very unnatural to me. Having my image projected right in front of me made me quite self aware and the delay between the other person was saying and its actual image distracted me.
With Matt on the other hand the interaction has been much more natural. We met every day as we work in the same place. We didnít even had to go on a date (or interview as Matt called it!) but I still enjoyed talking a few pictures of him and do a visual portrait of him. I felt we enjoyed talking and finding out about each other in the most natural possible way and that was a great advantage, even if we still used email sometime..
The general experience is that I enjoyed meeting two very nice persons and that there are technologies that suite different purposes.
Getting to know a person though is a long and slow process that canít be shortcut by any technology, while meeting someone for very precise purpose then is different. It can be done with the most suited technology and the goal is to do what need to be done in the most efficient way.
For me It has been an engaging assignment though, more on the social skills side that on the technology. I couldnít concentrate too much on the technology because I felt that getting to know the people first was more important, with the risk of going a bit out of track, but trying to avoid the feeling of just having to fulfil the assignment and nothing more.