cyber|glow is a light installation, generated in real time based on the interactions of the visitors.
It reveals the invisible and live software traces that operate an interactive game. cyber|glow
enchants visitors with a large-scale multi-player game where they learn about Nobel discoveries.
cyber|glow reveals the intangible layers of code and data that run the game, through a generative
Behind the Scenes
cyber|glow is a diptych.
One part is a multi-player, interactive game. The visitors can select a laureate and control its
movement on a large wall, through their phone. By picking their favorite Nobel laureate and moving
their avatar around on a projection, the visitors will create an illusory mingle with some of the
top scientists of all time. Users also learn more about the scientific discovery that earned their
laureate their prize.
Another part of cyber|glow is a real-time observation and visualization system producing the laser
movements that create the light art projection. This projection reveals the invisible game events,
database accesses, systems calls, network events and function calls that operate at high frequency
to deliver the game.
Software is the core medium that fuels our digital society, providing services to citizens,
governments, activists and corporations. It is an invisible and intangible set of processes that run
millions of operations per second, on top of world-wide networks. With cyber|glow, we wish to unveil
these invisible processes and let citizens realize the extraordinary scale of software that
The zoomed out laser view shows the three core part of the infrastructure of this installation: the
users' devices in the bottom right, the web server instance in the top and the computer in charge of
the visuals in the bottom left.
Zooming in on the top middle circle revealse a laser visualisation of what is going on inside the web
server: files being loaded, events being passed on, state being changed and queries to the database.
When the installation zooms in on the bottom right, events created by the user will be visualised,
either as a text message displaying the particular action, or as a red dot representing the
activation of an action.
The bottom left position shows the internal low level system activity of the computer creating the
visuals for the game and for the laser: errors reported, requests to the operating system to access
the hardware and mechanisms to harness inputs to create truly random cryptographically secure
cyber|glow was designed and developed by the
rethread.art collective: Erik Natanael Gustafsson, Thomas
Durieux, Jonathan Ramirez Mendoza, and Benoit
Baudry. For cyber|glow, re|thread collective features Ambar Troya, graphic designer and game