Surrounded by Immersion – Means of Post-Democratic Warfare

Geriet Sharma

taken from the book Ultrablack of Music

»Here, perhaps the frightful expression “consumption of music” really does apply after all.

For perhaps this continuous tinkle, regardless of whether anyone wants to hear it or not, whether anyone can take it in, whether anyone can use it, will lead to a state where

all music has been consumed, …«

(Arnold Schoenberg, Style and Idea)

»It is not a case of worrying or hoping for the best, but finding new weapons.«

(Gille Deleuze, The Societies of Control)

»[…] immersion is not achieved through assault; it’s achieved by inducing surrender.«

(Frank Rose, strategy + business magazine)

// —

Within the past 10 years, immersion has become a frequently used term in concert venues and studios with multichannel-loudspeaker arrays, in the context of audio-visual caves, VR, AR and fine arts. Manufacturers of loudspeaker systems as well as the gaming industry are using the term as a feature that heralds a new step in ‘multi-media’ experiences, and academia is claiming a kind of expertise in this field based on years of scientific experimentation and avant-garde practice.1 At the same time, exhibition halls thematise immersion in VR as a socio-political issue of the present2 and contemporary club culture is making a shift towards immersive, »new worlds of experiences ranging from the most subtle and nuanced to the most intensely visceral, from healing and meditative to thought provoking and radical.«3 These days, protagonists of Pop music, Ambient and experimental forms of Club and Rock music are idolised by loudspeaker companies and produce, within very short rehearsal times, “immersive experiences” for festivals and museums. However, also global marketing for all kinds of consumer products has understood the modes of action and thoroughly researched the intrinsic qualities of the field to create a cohesive and all-encompassing experience through Immersion Branding. Even data analysis recently entered Immersion Analytics4 with the help of VR. Immersion is without doubt a subject of debate and current relevance. But what can we expect from this terminology and its applications when it comes to an extended artistic articulation as well as advanced production, and what are its implications for the shared perceptive situation of artists, engineers and audiences in the Now? Within recent years, the use of spatial audio (e.g. Ambisonics) has come into the focus of game design, online platforms such as YouTube, and companies like Google and Facebook, as well as consumer electronics, event locations, and architecture. Quite likely in the near future artificial auditory environments will be part of everyday life, and for a great number of people, a part of their reality. The emerging question is, who creates these environments and with which intentions, and how can music, sound art, and design contribute with their own strategies, to such a reality?

// The Contemporary – Production of Space

Today, we are witnessing an unprecedented awareness of space, be it in philosophy, art, geography, and other such as academic discourses. However, after ages of discussion about time and its descriptions, what is behind all this? Why space, and why today? Since organising, redistributing, promoting, annexing, and defending territories are basic exercises of political as well as of economical and military decisions, to enthrone space as the new all-round theory means no less than to refer to the most traditional power dynamics we can imagine. This may be no surprise in view of strong effects of de-territorialisation as one main feature of the world’s status quo. Now, the awareness of space seems to have affected all kinds of systems, including academic discourses and art, to subordinate their targets under a new paradigm within a wide range of empirical, deductive, discursive, historical, scientific and intuitive methods. Spatialisation, the synthesis of spaces and spatial properties of sounds for a listener, is a growing field of interest for researchers, sound engineers, composers, and audiophiles. Due to broad and diverse viewpoints and requirements, the understanding and application of spatial sound is developing in various ways. How do we think spatialized art positions itself in terms of power dynamics? It is still unclear what this initial and explicit way of spatialized music means in terms of perception, composition, aesthetics, engineering and culture. And how its existence affects the history of ideas around technology.

// Virtual Reality = Total Control

»The expression ‘‘virtual reality’’ is a paradox, a contradiction in terms, and it describes a space of possibility or impossibility formed by illusionary addresses to the senses.«5

Since virtual acoustics, as one of the technological conditions for current and future spatialisations, is part of a huge, utopian vision, a reproduction of what some might call “reality” we have to re-consider: What is it about the project of virtual reality that exists much longer than the period we name digitization? The long list of end users and/or operators of immersive virtual reality products presents military equipment, modelling in all kind of engineering procedures, medical technology, educational technology, technology of rehabilitation and assistance, cybersex and, of course, consumer electronics. After having left its mark for centuries, the idea of simulating natural processes artificially was named ‘virtual reality’ by Damien Broderick in The Judas Mandala in the year 1982. It seems that the four features Broderick listed, have covered all epochs: immersion, plausibility, interactivity, high fidelity. However, “virtual reality” never meant “the other world“, or “the new world“, but the perfectly controllable reality. Consequently, as artist we have to ask: What is the final use of perfect simulations? What is really its important and lasting contribution, and to whom or to what?

// Absorption – Being there – Being Surrounded – Being a Campaign

Although the term immersion is used widely within music journals and game studies literature, there seems to be little consensus on what the term precisely means. It is often used in its non-media specific context of “deep absorption”, but that ignores how the particular characteristics of the medium in question influence audience’s engagements with it. This equating of immersion with general absorption overlooks the important fact that the term was applied to digital games and virtual environments to identify a specific type of experiential phenomenon. However, experiencing immersion as a form of deep involvement fails to differentiate the experience of being absorbed in solving a crossword puzzle from the sense of inhabiting a compelling virtual environment. Virtual reality technology carries with it the promise of making similar experiences an accessible part of everyday life, the culmination of a long history in the creation of representational spaces that attempted to give viewers and listeners the sensation that they were actually ‘inside’ them. According to Grau6 this tendency to create hermetically closed-off image spaces of illusion has a rich history that can be traced back to Roman villa images in 60 B.C. This notion of creating an all encompassing media experience was also a concern of Bazin, whose 1946 influential essay, The Myth of Total Cinema, argues that the ultimate goal for cinema and all techniques of mechanical reproduction was the creation of »[…] a total and complete representation of reality… a perfect illusion of the outside world in sound, colour and relief.«7

But as the representational power of graphics and sound technically expanded, game and 3D audio companies adopted “immersive” as a promotional adjective to market their games and multichannel sound systems. This strategy was initially employed almost exclusively to promote (photo-)realistic graphics or sound re-production, and although this is still often the case, it is nowadays also used to market the more prominent or innovative features of the relevant software, like size and scope of the game world, computer controlled characters’ artificial intelligence, engaging storyline, weather effects, dramatic sound effects, open-endedness, or the realism of its physics engine as well as the fact that loudspeaker arrays are physically surrounding the listener. »The common thread running through these conceptions of immersion is their ability to generate captivating experiences often with a close relation to the mimetic qualities they share with the chosen genre.«8

The development of advanced loudspeaker environments is most frequently directed by technological concerns, a focus upon reproduction of the physical signal, and less often towards the aesthetic or perceptual characteristics and the creative potentials that are inherent to these systems. This points to a conception of media technologies that ignores not only the key role that agency plays in creating presence, but also the interpretative role of the participant. So called high fidelity systems are an important part of enhancing the intensity of the experience but in themselves cannot create a sense of immersion!

One has to point out that even though immersion is enabled by technology, it is ultimately a personal experience of the user/listener and cannot be reduced to the characteristics of the technology that enable it and the expensive venues that are part of a so called creative industry, which is first of all a marketing machine’s environment.

// State of the Art or State of Mind?

»[…] computer-managed signal processing offers unprecedented possibilities in the control of sound fields, and the promise of three-dimensional music is on the horizon.«9

The technical evolvement has been enormous over the past 30 years when it comes to sound field reproduction and also the creation of fictive spatial constellations. For example, how different reverb-qualities within one and the same pop song or ambient track became a part of the artistic sonic vocabulary. But the basic idea is not only to take a common piece of music and arrange it – spatially, with the listener surrounded by the musical elements (flying snares, circling sirens?) and many loudspeakers. By the use of loudspeaker arrays artists can produce spaces and sculpture-like spatial phenomena never-before perceived outside the technical setup, as such. We can determine that with today’s technologies, engineers’ and artists’ shared utopias from the past came close, and we are only now experiencing the beginning of possibilities.

Thus, historically we are now inside Edgard Varèse’s Utopia from 1936 (!), when he wrote:

»When new instruments will allow me to write music as I conceive it, the movement of sound-masses, of shining planes, will be clearly perceived in my work, […]. Certain transmutations taking place on certain planes will seem to be projected onto other planes, […] We have actually three dimensions in music: horizontal, vertical, and dynamic swelling or decreasing. I shall add a fourth, sound projection … [the sense] of a journey into space. […] Today, with the technical means that exist and are easily adaptable, the differentiation of the various masses and different planes as well as these beams of sound could be made discernible to the listener by means of certain acoustical arrangements … [permitting] the delimitation of what I call ‘zones of intensities’.«10

With so called “immersive sound systems” we now can enter these zones of intensities. We can experience three-dimensional sound planes and masses. The materiality and the spatiality of sound have been changed dramatically. And instead of the convention of the listener sitting passively facing a sound stage, we are conceiving music that a listener can get inside, even explore, being an active participant rather than recipient. However, in addition to physical constraints, there are the conceptual ones, inherited from previous situations.

»A paradigm shift is under way; as technological constraints are rolled back, so must conceptual constraints be re-evaluated. Some of these are concerned with what spatiality actually is. Although we think of three-dimensional Euclidean space, it is by no means clear that this is anything other than a conceptual latecomer (however useful).«11

These new possibilities opened pathways to a terra incognita in a time when every voxel of the world seemed to be charted, scanned and categorised. However, the substances of these spaces are multi-layered and need different knowledge compared to former ideas of navigation, composition and research.

As Kendall and Ardila implied in 2008, »[…] we do not want to simply copy the real world; we want to build on it. But, we do want to use everything we can of what we know about human spatial perception, how it works in different contexts, why it works, and so on.«12

// No Sky – No Land – Doors of Perception?

But how do we critically engage with artificial environments that are made as products of mass consumption and as means of control, conceived with the ideology of isolating individuals physically and mentally to become highly efficient consumers, instead of being citizens of a society that fosters and benefits from the arts for centuries?

After all, »[…] artist’s work is originally engaged in the question of the sensibility of the other.«13

The early pioneers of electro-acoustic music pushed the frontiers of spatial audio and achieved remarkable successes in the artistic use of space. Varèse, Stockhausen, Schaeffer and Poullin, Bayle with the Acousmonium, Chowning (Turenas!) and onwards – spatial audio has been an expanding area of artistic expression. On the other hand, the great advantages in computer and audio technology that we enjoy today have not necessarily led to greater advances in spatial audio. What is a spatio-sonic utopia of 2019? Quite possibly, pushing back the frontiers of spatial audio today depends more on understanding spatial perception and cognition than on raw computing power and tools available. In everyday life, every person is able to navigate around in a spatial world, to talk about space and even to imagine unknown spaces. We can say that spatial thinking is one of our most deeply embedded cognitive capacities. But the ease with which we think about space is possibly a miscue as to how easily spatial ideas can be translated into spatial audio, which has its own unique capacities, intrinsic nature, and inherent limitations. The instrumentality of the tools, if not used for reproductive purposes, stays unclear and the artistic knowledge base is very thin. Not every spatial idea can be reverse engineered into sound. Clearly, our expectations about spatial audio should be in alignment with the fundamental capacities of spatial hearing. Traditionally, and through the centuries, artists performed experiments on perception and perceptual abilities, turning common tools into their instruments within this research process. At present, it seems that we entered a phase of vast, loud, colourful and impressive tableaus of clichés, overwhelming and highly sensational but less sensorially rich and diverse, with a focus on a software-hardware-in-use-debate, instead of critical strategies of (mis-)using tools, experimenting with subtle spatial formations, or claiming alternative (listener) positions. Therefore, we would need artistic research environments that enable us to understand the perceptibility of different listener backgrounds in very different and varying environmental designs. These research environments exist partly in some media art and music universities around the globe, but there they are bound to strict and limited rehearsal times and facility management, funding constraints, and quite often they stay hidden or closed for most artists in the ivory towers of academia.

// Art – Immersion – In – Compatibility

The successful involvement in an art experience is based on trust in the framework of art and its protective boundaries. Art may seriously provoke, but not seriously injure. Conventionally, art remains committed to the “as if” mode: the worlds it creates are real – but not real. At the same time, art renews itself and thrives on the border of violation and the frame break. With concept art, the idea replaces artful execution; with pop art, the difference between art and non-art falls; performance art grasps the border between life and art; Science competes with self-confident practices such as Lecture Performance or Artistic Research. Thus, we come to the question whether and, if so, how, these framework breaks are compatible with the laws of immersion itself. We should be particularly interested in the potential of intrinsic strategies, which point in and with the enjoyment of immersion on the questionableness of the same.

// Presence with Absence of Failure and Friction?

We can find and describe this questionableness present in most audio-visual media compositions from the pastcentury. The common relations between image and sound (film music/video clip/VJing & DJing, audio-visual installation, and VR) routinely comprise little more than functionality and illustration. The field of possibilities of “imaginable” relations mostly stays un-approached. A mutual dramaturgy existing outside of the omnipresent and frequently established synchronicity e.g. of cut, morph and musical meter, is hardly to be found. Within the past 15 years, audio-analysis (e.g. volume, frequency, beat detection) plug-ins produced an additional “re-active” strategy of making something happen. The claim of an audio-visual language hovers over almost every work relating an audio track to a picture, or vice versa. But is this promise ever going to be acquitted? The arising anxiety in the moment of failure or sudden absence of synchronicity, or sound, or picture, leads very soon to judgments of defectiveness, instability, a “non-composition”. However, at the same time, a short moment of increased attention, a fissure, a disturbance in the field of the mass media shaped to-be-expected is emerging. The attention in the moment of friction, the latency between audio and video, is a gate for the searching of artistically utilizable narrative styles. To consider the specific characteristics of function and perception, is to introduce a (new) terrain. Therefore, how much detachment between sound and image can be produced, or is “allowed”, and what is happening with, and in, this gap? In other words: Can VR and AR with its basic technical immersion requirements make this happen? A terrain of defectiveness, failure and instability?

// Marketing’s Avant-garde – Dissolving Subcultures – Imperceptible Warfare?

»[…] aesthetic ambition in this sense has largely collapsed. And this is because a huge portion of the population is totally subjected to the aesthetic conditioning of marketing, now hegemonic for the vast majority of the world, and is, therefore, estranged from any experience of aesthetic investigation.«14

Immersion is by far not the exclusive domain of engineering, sciences, arts, music or media theory. The avant-garde of immersion can be observed somewhere else, insofar as immersion became one of the most important models for economy and its marketing strategies. Therefore, the term cannot be marginalized as a feature of state of the art media technologies, or the successful absorption into an artwork. The implications are deeper and more serious. Marketing refers to the process through which businesses and organizations promote themselves and their products by communication with potential customers. Global marketing has understood immersion as an unprecedented field of influence that changes the paradigm of traditional customer relation and market building. In From The Power of Immersive Media 15Frank Rose states:»The most successful advertising today convincingly takes on the qualities of real experience.«These experiences may be concerts, multi-media events, games and VR-applications. Rose asks:»From 3D to VR, the goal is to eliminate any barrier between person and experience. What if we could have an unmediated experience?«16This unmediated experience can be translated as the substitute that Bernard Stiegler coins as conditioning. »Aesthetics has become both theatre and weapon in economic war. This has resulted in a misery where conditioning substitutes for experience«.17

For Rose, immersion takes place when the audience forgets that it’s an audience at all. With the advent of social media, the hard sell and even the soft sell are giving way to what he calls the conspirational whisper18. Through immersion, marketing takes its chance at becoming invisible by omitting the medium that used to transmit the message. We could say that immersive technologies are producing the “stealth mode” of contemporary marketing strategies. Artists’ experiences in utilizing media technologies aesthetically – by researching and developing effects and affects to create artefacts, became the knowledge base for companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon striving to understand the fundamental rules of conditioning, to predict and control consumer behaviour 24/7 using the drift of technology toward the imperceptible.

Stiegler continues: »In today’s control societies aesthetic weapons play an essential role: it has become a matter of controlling the technologies of aísthēsis and, in this way, controlling the conscious and unconscious rhythms of bodies and souls; modulating through the control of flows these rhythms of consciousness and life.«19

As a matter of fact, in this economy of attention the reality of many has become tuneable by a few companies.

»[…] this economy is an alienation of desire and of affects, where the weaponry is organized by marketing: Marketing is now the instrument of social control20.

Accordingly Goodman states: The micropolitics of frequency points toward the waves and particles that abduct consumers immersed in both the transensory and nonsensory soup of vibro-capitalism.«21

All this is concealed by the effects of the imperceptible medium itself, and hidden behind the language of PR.

As this is what Rose might call an immersive, technology-driven brand experience.

By living with and from YouTube as a multipurpose, every day tool of information, and by subscribing to Facebook and Google, we have started to work and live in post-democratic environments – voluntarily. Facebook has become the closest thing many countries have to a public square. It is the largest, and one of the most important, places where citizens exchange views. And every interaction is governed by the terms of service of a hierarchically organized private corporation whose priority has to be profits. The eagerness with which these private corporations work22 on the immersiveness of their products (“Enabling true social presence in VR”, “Introducing full-body Codec Avatars”, “Shared spaces in VR”) is unprecedented and measured by their economical power to overlap research, design practice, and human resources, they will be setting the predominant features and expectations in this field. And Rose concludes: »[…] Immersion is not achieved through assault; it’s achieved by inducing surrender. […] When the spell is broken, the audience snaps back to reality. The job of the 21st-century marketer is to make sure that does not happen.«23

// An Art of Immersion – Circumscribing – Borderline

»There is great difficulty in separating out musical ideas, technological opportunities, and socio-political

and aesthetic nuances, but this also beckons great adventure.«24

Art is free, shall not be part of any political campaign, nor shall it need to express a contemporary ideology, but we cannot close our eyes and ears in the current situation: sound and music are immersive parameters of reality – this is for real. The reason why I am deeply interested in technology is because it has the potentiality to let us learn more about our perceptive capabilities as human beings. I see technologies as training tools for aesthetic research for artists and scientists, and most ideally for artistic researchers. And in the process of research we turn tools into instruments, and with these instruments we are perceiving music out of something that some might call „The Contemporary“. These instruments can work like antennas, receivers.

Therefore, I do not subscribe to the common sense that technology is neither good nor bad. It is a question of their potentialities and who is going to explore and use them, with which motivation. So, in what sense do artists contribute to alternative world perceptions today, or are we just trying to be a part of “it”? Being sponsored by energy drink companies, lifestyle magazines and car companies means nothing more than being a part of their immersive strategies and campaigns. As composers, musicians, and sound artists we have to focus the paradox of immersion itself, which defines a core parameter for the understanding of today’s media development, but only occurs when the medium becomes imperceptible and disappears. Obviously, there is not a simple relationship of ‘‘either – or’’ between critical distance and immersion. But thematising exactly this paradox and the thin line between two worlds can be a contemporary artistic strategy for the utilisation of immersive technology.

An art of immersion should describe and stage the moment of transition from one world description into the other. The object of investigation is the brink, the borderline between “in” and “out”.

»Immersion can be an intellectually stimulating process; however, in the present as in the past, in most cases immersion is mentally absorbing and a process, a change, a passage from one mental state to another. It is characterized by diminishing critical distance to what is shown and increasing emotional involvement in what is happening.«25Similar to how film has made time manipulable, virtual acoustics as part of virtual reality makes this possible for space. Creating n-dimensional spaces – in the future, more than ever, we will decide what we surround ourselves with, and conceptualise the qualities of experiences possible. But by that we will not alter a virtual reality, we will change the everyday and how we perceive and understand it. We will have to overcome the current situation in which we are using the same tools like every marketing specialist with a team of very well paid and fully equipped engineers and designers, to instantly fulfil every strategic wish to manipulate bodies and minds, constantly and with entrance to the private everyday life of so many. We have to find a way of sharing experiences in immersive environments. What do we know about perception and perceptibility of spatial phenomena in n-D environments? Surely there is more than basic directional descriptions indexed to outdated reminiscences like “Kick” or “Snare” or “Voice”. So how can we communicate spatial qualities intrinsic to these systems? To benefit from varying technical and artistic viewpoints, individuals involved in artistic practice and those involved in theoretical or applied research, would need to engage in regular dialogue. This would have to happen on a level from which we could derive an “original” use of the immersive tools of our time, producing fundamentally different and challenging artefacts than marketing and PR are now offering – large scale and ubiquitous in public places, at fairs, in shops, smart homes or in the www. What else can we produce than overwhelming tableaus, overpowering multi-media products for piles of n-speakers, arranged as neat weapon-like arrays that we are not supposed to see and hear/feel/know about? In other words, we have to become more than, and very different from, advanced users. To answer this question, we practically need 24/7 access to tools and production environments. With the recent development in free downloadable software tools26 for any kind of loudspeaker arrays and the upcoming wave of binaural software environments for head-tracked headphones, we can at least establish a continuous artistic practice. Actually, there are no excuses left. To produce and refine qualitative aesthetic differences in immersive environments, let us not decline and demonise the mainstream. Rather, let us embrace clichés to become experts on non-clichés. For example, by establishing and re-inventing surreal spatiality in VR – as normal. Maybe some will find a way to professionalise strategies of amateurism in VR and higher order loudspeaker environments, to contrast the spotless appearances of common media products and foster a fundamental aesthetic debate on immersive effects and phenomena. We could start by re-labelling our own “products”: Musical work is not necessarily engaged anymore with the traditional composition of songs, pieces or tracks, but with the conception of sonic spatial models (ssm?). Whether we are writing music, composing, hacking sound, programming, creating tracks, most likely one would find a spatial strategy involved in the creative process (e.g. background-foreground shifts, left-right morphologies, spectromorphologies as vertical descriptions, sculptural qualities of sound, use of environmental sounds, use of convolution reverb).

// firniss_redux

We can describe the thin layer27 between the one and the other world that preserves and finalises, but forms the completion and remains invisible. The border that no one perceives is the interface between two places that merge at it and thus become real. This layer can be circumscribed, tested, vaulted in multiple directions in order to hear what can be dilated, for how long and where, until the membrane becomes porous, cracked, permeable and clearly perceptible, thus thematising spatial acoustic perception itself: Making it vulnerable exposes it as defenceless and thus emancipates it at the same time. The original is created outside the common product. It remains unrealistic to the last and has the impertinence to be.

// —

Deleuze writes: »It is not a case of worrying or hoping for the best, but finding new weapons.«

Perhaps in the future, however, the artist will be concerned with something else. Identifying the weapon as such and confronting it with its greatest nightmare: The unmasking of its involvement and entanglement in everyday life, its exposure in the unconscious, by forcing it into consciousness through artistic actions.

Cited Works

Bazin, André (1967): What Is Cinema? Essays. Berkeley.

Calleja, Gordon (2007): Digital Games as Designed Experience. Reframing the Concept of Immersion. Wellington.

Collins, Nick (2009): Electronica, in: Oxford Handbook of Computer Music. Oxford.

Goodman, Steve (2010): Sonic Warfare, Sound, Affect, and the Ecology of Fear. Cambridge/London.

Grau, Oliver (2003): Virtual Art: From Illusion to Immersion. London.

Kendall, Gary S./ Ardila, Mauricio (2008): The artistic play of spatial organization: Spatial attributes, scene analysis and auditory spatial schemata, in: CMMR 2007, Lecture Notes in Computer Science 4969, Berlin.

Lennox, Peter (2009): The Oxford Handbook of Computer Music. New York.

Roginska, Agnieszka/ Geluso, Paul (2018): Immersive Sound: The Art and Science of Binaural and Multi-Channel Audio, Abingdon.; also Keislar, Douglas (2017), in: Computer Music Journal (Vol. 41, No.1). High-Density Loudspeaker Arrays, Part 2: Spatial Perception and Creative Practice, https://www.mitpressjournals.org/toc/comj/41/1.

Rose, F. (2015): The Power of Immersive Media, in: strategy + business magazine (Issue 78). New York.

Stiegler, Bernard (2014): Symbolic Misery (Vol. 1). The Hyper-Industrial Epoch. Cambridge.

Varèse, Edgard (1998): The Liberation of Sound, in: Contemporary Composers on Contemporary Music. New York.

1 E.g. Roginska, Agnieszka/ Geluso, Paul (2018): Immersive Sound: The Art and Science of Binaural and Multi-Channel Audio, Abingdon.; also Keislar, Douglas (2017): Computer Music Journal (Vol. 41, No.1). High-Density Loudspeaker Arrays, Part 2: Spatial Perception and Creative Practice, https://www.mitpressjournals.org/toc/comj/41/1.

2 E.g. the exhibitions 2018: 1) at Kuenstlerhaus Graz: Immersion in space and time, 2) Berliner Festspiele: Immersion.

3 https://www.monomsound.com/about/.

4 https://www.magicleap.com/news/partner-stories/bring-data-to-four-dimensions-with-immersion-analytics-visualizer-software, (all links accessed Nov. 2019).

5 Grau, Oliver (2003): Virtual Art: From Illusion to Immersion. London, p. 49.

6 ibid.: p. 54.

7 Bazin, André (1967): What Is Cinema? Essays. Berkeley, pp. 20-21.

8Calleja, Gordon (2007): Digital Games as Designed Experience. Reframing the Concept of Immersion. Wellington, p. 89.

9Lennox, Peter (2009): Spatialisation of Computer Music, in: Oxford Handbook of Computer Music. Oxford, p. 259.

10Varèse, Edgard (1998): The Liberation of Sound, in: Contemporary Composers on Contemporary Music. New York, pp. 197.

11Lennox (2009), p. 259.

12Kendall, Gary S./ Ardila, Mauricio (2008): The artistic play of spatial organization: Spatial attributes, scene analysis and auditory spatial schemata, in: CMMR 2007, Lecture Notes in Computer Science 4969, Berlin, pp. 125–138.

13 Stiegler, Bernard (2014): Symbolic Misery (Vol. 1). The Hyper-Industrial Epoch. Cambridge, p.1.

14 Ibid.: p. 3.

15 Rose, F. (2015): The Power of Immersive Media, in: strategy + business magazine (Issue 78). New York.

16 Ibid.: p. 5.

17 Stiegler (2014), p. vii.

18 Rose (2015), p. 8.

19 Stiegler (2014), p. 2.

20 Stiegler (2014), p. 13.

21 Goodman, Steve (2010): Sonic Warfare, Sound, Affect, and the Ecology of Fear. Cambridge/London, p. 188.

22 facebook engineering, realistic sound: https://engineering.fb.com/virtual-reality/spatial-audio-bringing-realistic-sound-to-360-video/, facebook reality labs: https://tech.fb.com/inside-facebook-reality-labs-research-updates-and-the-future-of-social-connection/, Google AR/VR: https://arvr.google.com/, (all links accessed Nov. 2019).

23 Rose (2015), p. 10.

24 Collins, Nick (2009): Electronica, in: Oxford Handbook of Computer Music. Oxford, p. 350.

25 Grau (2003), p. 13.

26 E.g. https://plugins.iem.at/, (link accessed Nov. 2019).

27 The following lines are also the liner notes for the sonic spatial model firniss_redux (binaural) published on the accompanying Mille Plateaux Compilation ‘Ultrablackness of Music’.

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