[-empyre-] Hello From Angel

Hello Everyone,
I would like to enter the discussion by first
introducing myself and writing a few words on the
LowDrone, the online project by Alex Rivera and I,
produced for INSITE2005/Tijuana Calling. 

(But first let me say that I had a hard time
processing the start of this month?s Empyre discussion
alongside Katrina and its aftermath. My deepest
respect goes out to all that have suffered.)

Being a product of the US./Mexico border, I find the
subject of this months? discussion to be stimulating
and thought provoking. To me, the border has always
represented a site of translation, one that requires
constant negotiation between multiple realities it
The border and its effects are not fixed to the
Southwestern United States region. For example, towns
in Long Island, New York, one can come across day
laborers waiting on street corners for work just as
they do in cities like San Diego, Los Angeles, and El
Paso. That border has, and is, already moving north. 

The LowDrone, is the world?s first airborne lowrider
capable of transmitting video feeds from a wireless
camera strapped to its? body. A lowrider is a car that
has had its suspension modified with hydraulics so
that it rides really low to the ground and also hops
and bounces with the flip of a switch. Its? historic
legacy is tied to the Mexican-American youth since the

For Alex and I, the LowDrone is a direct response to
the increased use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)
or drones along the U.S./Mexico border. The Predator
Drone, one of three ?cameras-with-wings? produced by
the military, is currently used by the border patrol
and the military. Radical and racist vigilante groups,
such as the Minutemen and American Border Patrol, have
their own version of the drone?the Border Hawk. The
Border Hawk along with net has allowed American Border
Patrol to ?enlist? virtual members and have them watch
the border for ?invaders.?
In terms of technology, the border, and the net, the
LowDrone functions to highlight what is already
present, that of constant surveillance. The online
interface renders the possibilities of patrolling
one?s own airspace, and at the same time, watching the

Yahoo! Mail - PC Magazine Editors' Choice 2005 

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