The Electric Sheep and their Dreams in High Fidelity

Scott Draves

Spotworks, San Francisco CA, USA

Electric Sheep is a distributed screen-saver that harnesses idle computers into a render farm with the purpose of animating and evolving artificial life-forms known as sheep. The votes of the users form the basis for the fitness function for a genetic algorithm on a space of abstract animations. Users also may design sheep by hand for inclusion in the gene pool.

Dreams in High Fidelity is a new manifestation of the sheep. Physically it consists of a small computer driving a framed liquid crystal display. It plays sheep selected, edited, and sequenced by the artist at triple the resolution and more stately motion than the screen-saver. Sales of this fine art will support the free network, forming a symbiotic relationship.

Delivered as an invited lecture at NPAR06, The 4th International Symposium on Non-Photorealistic Animation and Rendering.

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