- From the Malwarez and Ekisto series
Alex Dragulescu is a visual artist, designer, and programmer working at the intersection of art and technology. His projects bridge multiple computational domains, including information visualization, social media design, and computer games, and involve data derived from social feeds, public databases, unwanted emails, and video games.
His work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions worldwide in San Diego, Boston, Madrid, Venice, Florence, Rome, Seoul, Sao Paolo, St. Petersburg, Havana, Helsinki, and Bucharest. He has a BS in Cinema and Photography from Ithaca College, an MFA in Visual Arts from the University of California, San Diego, and an MS from MIT. He has been a researcher with the Sociable Media Group at the MIT Media Lab, the Experimental Game Lab, and the Center for Research in Computing and the Arts at the University of California, San Diego.
>> Malwarez and Ekisto, 2008–2013
Malwarez is a series of visualization of worms, viruses, trojans, and spyware code. API calls, memory addresses, and subroutines are tracked and analyzed for each piece of disassembled code. Their frequency, density, and grouping are mapped to the inputs of an algorithm that grows a virtual 3-D entity. For example, the number of occurrences of repeating function calls might control the growth and curling of tentacles. Thus the patterns and rhythms found in the data influence the configuration of the artificial organism.
Ekisto is an interactive visualization of online communities that tries to imagine and map our online habitats using similarity algorithms and the city as a metaphor. We are tuned to the ebb and flow of information trends but don’t quite have a visual understanding of the global network or local clusters around us. Ekisto is meant as a discovery and exploration tool. Unlike real-life human settlements where the layout is rigid and governed by geography and urbanistics, the layout logic of the online habitat is algorithmic and thus infinitely mutable. One such instantiation is generated by a graph layout algorithm that arranges users in 2-D space based on their similarity. The gravitational pull of hubs, those well-connected influential users, delineates the neighborhoods of the online habitat.
http://sq.ro (Page 110)