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cyber/fiber (2021-) is an ongoing project exploring the links between computation and knitting. The work involves a modded KH-930e knitting machine connected to a computer running open source software from All Yarns Are Beautiful (AYAB). I use both design software and code to create the designs.

For my first experiment, I translated words into binary code that was punched manually into a punch card and then printed on a knitting machine. In another experiment, I knitted artifacts/images from 1970s computing history.

I treat knitting as a slower form of computation. Both knitting and coding are fundamentally procedural: The process of generating a knitting pattern from a swatch has resonances with writing lines of code. Picking up a dropped stitch on the machine reminds me of debugging code. Writing a for loop that cycles through an array of elements is like repeatedly running the knitting carriage over a bed of needles.

Illustration published in Donna Haraway’s 1985 “A Cyborg Manifesto”
Typography from the 1984 film It’s a Miracle

Excerpt from Donna Haraway’s “A Cyborg Manifesto” translated into binary code.

A swatch knit with the binary code.

A page from the newsletter published by Computer People for Peace, an activist group of technologists in the 1970s.

A ferromagnetic core memory plate bought off the internet. Hand woven in 1970s USSR, it functioned as computer memory in the Saratov-2.

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