I want to draw a perfect circle, too.

Alexander Gross
wood, string, custom electronics, code
September, 2010

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I want to draw a perfect circle, too.

The continuing advent of new technologies perpetually renews our shared hope that in some way perfection is possible. As a society we direct our technologies towards endeavors which humanity has long since abandoned as impractical pursuits.

The techonlogically enhanced marionette uses computer vision, precision electronic devices, and genetic programming techniques together, to attempt to draw a perfect circle. With each iteration the system attempts to both judge and improve itself. As with life, for each algorithm, physical law, or supposed truth, there are matching forces of uncertainty, logical error, and imprecision. In practice it is this dialectic which prevents perfection from ever arising, even when the logic of a set of rules seems to suggest that this outcome would be the inevitable conclusion of some sequence of events.

The goal of the puppet's performance is not to hammer home the futility of human endeavor, but to remind us that the forces of technology, logic, and positivism are limited in their ability to structure and control the creation of new types of knowledge. When nothing can be proven, there is no absolute truth to be had. This does not mean that all pursuit of knowledge is pointless. These "perfect circles" and all the resultant outcomes of our reality's imperfect systems become standard meters for the true measurement and reflection of our place and existence in the world.