7:14 p.m. 3.Sep.99

Linz: Infested with Technology
Mark Tribe on openX

Greetings from Linz, Austria: birthplace of Adolph Hitler, home of Linzer Tort. Rhizome.org is here to participate in openX and produce this online journal.

What is openX? According to the Ars Electronica program, "openX treats new strategies to confront network art. As a 'walk-through network,' openX constitutes an open platform which provides a space to combine the production of and encounter with art, and encourages the process of exchange. openX should act as a prototype for dealing with the presentations of art work and activity that defies the normal presentation models of gallery, museum, or performance."

From where I sit, openX is first and foremost an open space where some 18 artists and groups, each with a table and a couple of computers, can show what they do and do what they do and generally hang out and get to know each other. To my left, Bruno Beusch and Tina Cassani from TNC Network are getting their stuff ready for the arrival of the public tomorrow. Behind me, Ars Electronica Director, Gerfried Stoker, is having a conversation with Alex Adriaansens at V2 in Rotterdam via the ENCART high-speed ATM teleconference connection . To my right, technicians wrangle with the ENCART technology, struggling to keep the audio video link alive.

openX is located in a large, curving, windowed arcade outside the main auditorium of Bruckner Haus, a 25-year-old concert hall on the edge of the Danube. It is now early evening, and the dimly lit space glows with the low-level radiance of cathode ray tubes reflecting off large glossy openX posters.

My desk faces the window, through which I can see the final preparations for a concert that will take place on a floating platform on the river. Rows of synchronized spotlights line the opposite bank, panning up and down in unison. Green laser beams shoot out from the stage-one just pointed straight at me, making the window glass turn green. Clusters of loudspeakers hang from industrial cranes.

For the next six days, David Hunt, Marisa Newman and I will be reporting on the people, projects events and ideas that will infect this quiet, conservative town on the banks of the Danube with strange technology. Let us know what you think by posting to .