Google Maps screenshot by S. Lampoudi.
Despite marine sciences’ turn towards big data over the last decades, only a very small portion of the world’s oceans today are sufficiently understood. Their modeling requires constant research and development of new ocean technologies, a highly competitive field usually conducted by corporate industries or public research institutions. In this case, an ocean robotics engineer and a media theorist met over the summer of 2019 in Santa Barbara to explore and reflect on alternative approaches in the design process of oceanographic data engineering and the role that media theory could play in it. They built and deployed a GPS trackable floating device that provided some in situ data from the Santa Barbara Channel, and posed many open questions. The field report speaks of obstacles and failures, as well as surprising results and insights in the design process.
Video available at: https://vimeo.com/527395527