Monday, 7 January 2008
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A demonstration of the language barrier
by Harry ,Billy ,Robert ,Margarita ,Mark
“Around - the - world” team
In this context a Telematic Performance could be defined as the process of transmitting an image from one place to another. The transportation of the image will not use any modern day technology. However some technology will be used to illustrate the process to the audience.
The process was conceived by the exploration of a everyday problem for some of the international students in our team. The language barrier between ourselves and others is something that is a common problem in life.
We decided to investigate the effect of the language barrier on communication. We decided to try a process of Chinese whispers in different languages. We found that between the languages there were large similarities in the way words sounded. This meant that as
the words got passed along the chain they were being substituted for words that sounded similar in each person’s native tongue, although the words sounded similar they all had completely different meanings.
We think that this is a very strong demonstration of the possible effect that translating from different technological, geographical, etc. protocols and languages
Therefore we decided to demonstrate this process too you. During the demonstration we will pass the names of objects within the original image along the line of different languages. At each stage they will “encoded” and “decoded” at each stage. They will be decoded into English so the audience can see how the image is distorting threw the process, as a graphical reference they will also be drawn on the over head projectors. The encode will then be into the transmitters native language and sent to a receiver via voice.
During the process everyone who is not currently transmitting or receiving will be seated on the stage listing to mp3 players to insure that they have no idea what has been said before their stage.
The team for this demonstration, and the language in which they will transmit in brackets, are listed bellow:
· Harry (English)
· Billy (Greek)
· Robert (Irish)
· Margarita (German)
· Mark (English)
Methods of communication
During the demonstration a number of different methods of communication will be used. A list of the these methods is shown bellow:
· Digital Image
· Over head Projection
Appendix 1 - Brief
Telematic Performance] (15% Group Work)Working in groups select an image (A4). Devise a system for transferring the image from one location to another. Each person will mark a stage in the transfer which will require the image to be coded and decoded. Each stage will be different from any other stage in the process. The process should last approximately 5 minutes.
Look at: FAX machines/Modems/T.V./Film & slide projectors. You can’t use any of these. (A slide projector may be used as a light source but not for projecting slides). Semaphore/Morse code/shadows/grids. You might want to use some of these.
Think about: Your audience, presentation, genre, style, timing.....
Requirements: A: It should last 5 minutes, B: be performed live with audience interaction.C: You should also provide a ‘script/score’.
Deadline: Week beginning 29 October Location TBA.
Appendix 2 - Introductory Script
Language Barrier protocol demonstration
Good evening the five of us (Margarita, Billy, Mark, Harry and Myself) would like to welcome you all to our language barrier demonstration.
The aim of this experimental demonstration is to investigate the effect of the language barrier on communication.
To do this we are going to try and pass an image from one person to another via a number of different languages, and interpretations’. Harry will start with an image that the rest of us have seen before. You the audience will be able to see the image at all times, as you can see it will be projected up behind me. However non of us on the stage can see it other than harry. Harry will describe the prominent images in the original picture to the second person in the chain. This done in English. Then the second person will translate the description into their language, this will be done by choosing words that sound similar in the receivers’ language. The receiver will then announce what the word they have chosen means in English this is to give you the audience an indication as to how the original image description is becoming distorted. This process will then be repeated until it has reached the designated final receiver.
To insure that all participants do not hear any of the descriptions before the one they are supposed to they will all be listening to mp3 players when not actually sending or receiving a description.
The languages’ that this demonstration will use are English, German, Irish and Greek.
Ok well before this lot start signing out loud let’s get on with it.
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