Documentaries

Demoscene – The Art of the Algorithms

Posted April 10th, 2012

Computer Art, Digital Art, Documentaries


In the 1980′s, something changed the world forever. Computer technology, mostly due to the appearance of affordable Commodore 64′s, entered households worldwide, providing the opportunity for everyone to create digital art. But existing art forms weren’t the only ones to be re-implemented on these computers; brand new forms of art also appeared, ones thought to be impossible up to that point. Computers provided an opportunity for the creator to produce visuals and sound effects and combine them to create the ultimate audiovisual experience, by using only the language of mathematics and writing program code, without physical interaction. As a result of such techniques, demos were born, and with them, the demoscene subculture. A demo can best be understood as a spectacular animated music video which is usually a few minutes long. And yet it’s something entirely different from a traditional video. Computer technics is the fastest developing part of our world, which produces more and more new opportunities for art. Moleman shows you now a digital subculture, where artists don’t use always the latest technology, but their aim is also to bring out the best from 30 year-old computer technics.

Moleman 2 – Demoscene – The Art of the Algorithms (2012)

Watch the film here or download it at molemanfilm.com. And don’t forget there is Moleman 1 as well.

Rhizome: “As an impact of the spreading of computer technology, some new art sections have been born. Some of them just digitized the analogue forms, but some produced whole new artistic forms. In former times, image-, and sound-based arts required not only intellectual but physical skills as well. Nowadays, computer programming allows us to create new-styled artworks using only our intellectual skills. We don’t need our physical skills for that anymore. Computer technics is the fastest developing part of our world, which produces more and more new opportunities for art. Moleman shows you now a digital subculture, where artists don’t use always the latest technology, but their aim is also to bring out the best from 30 year-old computer technics.

The demoscene is a computer art subculture that specializes in producing demos, which are non-interactive audio-visual presentations that run in real-time on a computer. The main goal of a demo is to show off programming, artistic, and musical skills.

The demoscene first appeared during the 8-bit era on computers such as the Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum and Amstrad CPC, and came to prominence during the rise of the 16/32-bit home computers (the Amiga and the Atari ST). In the early years, demos had a strong connection with software cracking. When a cracked program was started, the cracker or his team would take credit with a graphical introduction called a “crack intro” (shortenedcracktro). Later, the making of intros and standalone demos evolved into a new subculture independent of the software (piracy) scene.”

Image from Demoscene Alpha: A Look At The World’s Earliest Computer Graphics