Looking Outwards #6: Final Project

by areuter @ 10:10 am 24 March 2010

In preparation for my final project, a continuation on Minute, I wanted to research what other people have done with time perception in art. It was actually very difficult to find any works directly related to how people experience time internally, as most time-related art works are focused on altering external environments to convince viewers that their perception has changed (for example, time-lapse).

While researching I found an interesting segment from Hugh Foley and Margaret Matlin’s book, Perception and Sensation:

Time perception might well be influenced by physiological state, knowledge, personality, and other factors. For instance, there is some evidence that a person with a high fever shortened her estimates of a 1-sec interval and that a person who lived in a cold cave lengthened his time estimates. The evidence for the contribution of metabolic rate to time perception is weak, but would be consistent with a biological clock. The fact that knowledge and experience also play a role (Theme 4), however, argues that there is a cognitive component in time perception. Alberto Montare (1985; 1988) has found that providing feedback to people about the accuracy of their time estimations increases the accuracy of subsequent judgments. Montare did not find gender differences, suggesting that time perception might be equivalent among men and women.

So it does appear that a person’s background affects their perception of time, although the most important factor may be his or her physiological state–perhaps other factors such as location effect time because they effect the body through stress and other lifestyle habits that vary by region.

Jeremy LAKHLEF – La perception du temps
Uploaded by bofman. – Watch original web videos.

Here’s one slightly related video I found, which simultaneously displays several videos which all span the same about of time, but the content of each panel affects he viewer’s time perception in a different way. It’s successful in communicating it’s point, although some of the videos are more interesting than others (the top left and bottom right) and I don’t feel that this is anything that I’ll really remember a few months from now. However, it does help me understand things I can do better in my own project: higher video quality, stronger consideration of aesthetic during filming. On the other hand, here’s a video I found which has nothing to do with time, but does really interesting spatial arrangements with video clips, which might be interesting to keep in mind while establishing the arrangements in my own project:


  1. Great post. Thanks.

    Comment by golan — 30 March 2010 @ 6:23 am
  2. Comments from 2010/04/07 crit

    Typography: less bold text; left justified; eliminate the orphan word “minute”. Great that you got video recording working!
    Perhaps the playback machine and the capture machine can be the same? (For the purposes of saving resources, for the final exhibition). Then the grid of minutes can be a DVD…

    Please don’t use videos (or sound, really) of people speaking. It’s extremely distracting from the real content of your piece. It might be a good thing that the code I gave you doesn’t record audio 🙂 — GL

    The image quality is so good.
    Is there any memory issue if you have recorded so many video?
    I kind of like the dynamic video display.

    once you get more videos, how many do you want to display on screen? all and make the video size smaller, or just a few and keep size bigger?
    I guess keep, say, 12 of videos updated, and the rest blank. So that when an old one fade out , a new one appears in the blank area, and catches attention.

    Another thing you could do would be to have a counter along the bottom and randomly select a set of 12-ish videos to show. Once all the videos are done playing, restart the timer and post a new set of randomly chosen videos. The talking girl was distracting after a while…although I didn’t think so the first time I saw the video…but I think part of the reason it was annoying is because she was on a loop. I’m not sure how much you can “filter” out unwanted videos if you intend to collect more data in realtime. 🙂

    A countdown to the minute might be nice so people can be prepared. Think Photobooth on the Mac.
    >>oh no…
    >>Oh no?
    >>thought it’s about one’s own perception?
    >>No, I mean a five second countdown to the beginning of recording so that people can prepare themselves
    >> :]
    >>>oh no…
    >>>>In that case they will synchronise themselvs with time or start counting unconsciously

    Comment by golan — 7 April 2010 @ 1:20 pm

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