Text negotiating with the computer medium leads to a different point of view on language, thus seen under another light, on top of the codes allowing it to exist, letter after letter, word after word. Somes works are atomizing language in order to account for such a context, one that brings attention to language and transforms our relationship to writing. The means offered by computers and Internet are allowing for such a reconsideration and such a reconquest of language.

Indeed, language transposition onto the computer medium requires the sharing of space with other programming languages, implying an effort, a translation. Similar to the learning of a new language, such an experience demands that an unusual attention be given to signs, to their aural and visual values, to their organization resulting in the production of a meaning. Words being HTML encoded, for example, and ending up to be read on the resulting page, imply a work, sometimes even a fight, and from such an adventure springs a certain fascination in front of what ends up appearing.

For example, Tim McLaughlin's site includes many visual poems where letters, words, and statements become themselves objects in a dialogue with their own meaning. Richard Barbeau also created an important body of works paying special attention to language and its visual and aural caracteristics in projects like Avatar, Pangrammes, Perec and Miroir. Here letters, words, short sentences are once again being used as visual objects, as departing points, for an exploration of language in the context of this new medium.

Works discussed more at length in the Magazine:

Tim McLaughlin, Threw the Read Window
Richard Barbeau, Perec



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