Spaxels Research Initiative

SPAXELS (space elements)[1]


The name “Spaxels” evokes its origins—its derivation from the term “pixels”—but, above all, it brings out a fundamental difference from them. Each medium manifests itself in terms of a “language,” a special form of expression unique to that medium.

“The media is the message” is thus both the Spaxels Research Initiative’s programmatic agenda and a challenge that it is facing in diverse ways. For one thing, the task at hand is to discover the Spaxels’ “language” and to expand that vocabulary; for another, we aim to advance the swarm medium’s infrastructure. Seeing the swarm as a conceptual and behavioral pattern that will soon pervade society as a whole opens up new potential on which the Spaxels Research Initiative will intensively focus.

The Spaxels Research Initiative’s members are industrial enterprises, innovation labs and start-ups that collaborate—each on issues specific to its respective pursuits—with the Ars Electronica Futurelab and the Ars Electronica Spaxels GmbH.

The field of spatio-temporal visual design under strong logistical constraints – an area in which the Futurelab, with its successful Spaxels project, can draw on ample experience.


[1] The name Spaxels is derived from the term PIXELS (picture elements), and describes the spatially constitutive function of these airborne space elements.


Partners of the Spaxels Research Initiative