ACC 2014: Artist-Centred Computing Workshop

Part of VL/HCC 2014

Computers have had a long history of being used and abused by artists in their craft, and there are very few programming languages (including visual languages) which have not been used in service of this goal. However, few of these languages were designed specifically by and for artists. Ironically, the humanities are often overlooked in human-centred computing.

The Artist-Centred Computing workshop is an opportunity to explore the design objectives and constraints of building programming languages/environments for artists. Rather than considering specific artworks, it’s a chance to wrestle with the technical issues which arise when designing systems for artistic creation. It’s a chance for computer scientists—many of whom have a deep interest in the arts—can bring their ‘day job’ expertise to bear on this design challenge. ACC 2014 is a workshop at the 2014 IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human-Centric Computing.

Call for Papers

We are soliciting works with technical and artistic merit, in areas such as:

  • domain-specific languages vs general purpose languages for artistic creation: do artists need different computing environments from the rest of us?
  • in-depth technical analyses of and comparisons between artist-centred languages
  • how do we evaluate languages for artists?
  • what would a language designed by Beethoven look like? Michaelangelo? Stravinsky?
  • livecoding and live patching
  • what can artists learn from software engineers?
  • artistic vs prosaic software visualisation
  • visual languages for artists

And if you think the whole notion of “Artist-Centred Computing” is just so much rubbish, then submit a paper and argue your case!

The workshop proceedings will be published through the IEEE.


Ross Bencina is a programmer/artist and the creator of AudioMulch: software for real-time audio processing and improvised music performance.

Workshop format

15-20 minute (TBC) presentations (including questions), live performance/creation encouraged. A sweet PA and projector will be provided—use them!

Important Dates

May 11 papers due
June 6 acceptance notifications
July 29 workshop happens
July 30—Aug 1 enjoy the rest of VL/HCC

How to Submit

Contributions should be 4 pages in the VL/HCC Short Paper format, and accompanying video is encouraged. Submit your papers through the ACC EasyChair site, not through the main VL/HCC EasyChair site.

ACC ‘14 Committee

ACC ‘14 is brought to you by:

  • Ben Swift (Organiser) - (Australian National University)
  • John Hoksing (Organiser) - (Australian National University)
  • Henry Gardner (Organiser) - (Australian National University)
  • Andrew Sorensen (Organiser) - (Queensland University of Technology)
  • Ross Bencina - (Sonic Fritter Pty. Ltd.)
  • Alan Blackwell - (Cambridge University)
  • Sam Aaron - (Cambridge University)
  • Rhazes Spell - (Victoria University of Wellington)
  • Andrew Brown - (Griffith University)
  • Toby Gifford - (Griffith University)
  • Steve Tanimoto (University of Washington)

Conference Location

Come to Melbourne; hang out in hipster laneway cafes, go to an indie shoegaze side gig, sink a beer at a rooftop bar. Seriously, we can hook you up with any of those things. Melbourne is internationally recognised (by people from Melbourne) as Australia’s cultural capital.


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