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Sunday, January 16, 2005
AlgoYatra
A Yatra literally means a walk, a pilgrimage, a journey into faith.

When Gandhi took on the colonial power he chose to walk it. The Salt March, his 23-day yatra to the sea to produce salt, became a direct statement against the imperatives of colonial capitalism. Walking was not only a means of getting from point A to point B. It was directly political.

While the aims of AlgoYatra are somewhat more modest, the same spirit lives on.

You walk a city. Your destination is preplanned by the imperatives of your daily life. Your routes routine, rushed, constrained. Home to work, work to home, home to work ... a short detour on the way to where you consume. Cities and its spaces have become grid-like maps, of dead movement without exitement and adventure. But the spaces we live in are also much more. Every neighborhood breathes with the foul sweet smells of history; its narrow byways evoke different feelings and moods for the vagabond that drifts in and out of them.

Now take a map of London, walk around with it in Paris. A map of Calcutta and drift through the crowded strees of Bombay and get lost in unimagined ways. Destroy the old map you carry in your head like a carcass of how a city is supposed to look and feel. Experience space as you have not been experienced it before. Follow your smell for direction for a change. Ask the stray dog sleeping on the pavement what the philosophy of that particular space is. Experiment. Create your own psychogeography of the spaces you live in.

With this in mind, we introduce AlgoYatra.

The idea is simple: we provide the Algo; you provide the Yatra.

We provide the algorhythm, a set of simple directions that allow you to break away from the repetions you carry in your head. You then become a machine that follows this rhythm and provide the yatra, your walk, in the neighbourhoods you live in, in the area you last felt an incomprehensible dread or joy. What matters is not place or space. What matters is intensity of experience. Find you own pilgrimage. Take the journey into faith that alwas lurks behind the second turn to the right after left.

All we ask for is you to have fun and record your feeling in a form that will be provided. The data from this experiment will then be gathered into a central database from which new knowledges, new maps and new politics can be created according to principles of generative psychogeography.

Documentary about the specific of the game will be provided soon. Meanwhile see:
4 Comments: Post a Comment
Anonymous swarn shoor said ..

who wrote this ? are you in Mumbai ? please drop me a line if you have a moment. "swarnshoor@btinternet.com" Many thanks.

6:07 AM 
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