“Bergen Leser” is an interactive installation that enables collaborative public reading of books. It is installed at the Bergen Public Library, and as recordings accumulate, they become available online as video books. “Bergen Leser” is an adaptation of Read Aloud, an installation by Ross Phillips, commissioned for the National Media Museums in Bradford, UK, 2012-13.
At the Bergen Public Library a simple video recording studio has been set up. The audience can sit down and press a button, in order to read and record a sequence of a book. The text to be read is displayed at a teleprompter in front of them, and when done, they press the button again. The resulting video is instantly uploaded to a web site where the recordings accumulate to become a video book.
Technical development has been done at BEK by Trond Lossius and Stian Remvik, and integrates video processing in Cycling ’74 Max with a dynamic web application developed in Hobo and RubyOnRails. As recordings finish successfully, the video file is compressed for web presentation, and Max writes information on the recording to a sqlite3 database. The database and resulting videos are then uploaded to a web server, and the database serves as the backbone for the web application. At http://bergenleser.bergenbibliotek.no you can follow the progress, and hear and see the books being read from start to end.
The installation opened October 18 2013 and will run through 2014. Supported by Arts Council Norway and National Library of Norway.