like to watch / CopVision is a program that watches television.
Specifically, it watches COPS on Fox. It is not a video, it is a
software process that tries to make sense of a live video feed.
COPS is all it has ever known, and it probably thinks it is COPS.
It has started to watch television as the show.
CopVision learns its language from closed captioning subtitles
transmitted in the television signal. Everything that is said on
COPS is tucked away in its memory to help it understand what it's
seeing. It analyzes every frame, searching the field for outlines
that remind it of something it has seen before. When it recognizes
a contour it tags it with a guess as to what might be going on,
gathered from its experience of words and pictures that go together.
It sometimes tries to put words in the mouths of the characters.
CopVision is funny when commercials come on because it
doesn't know that it isn't COPS, and it keeps watching the same
like COPS, has no irony. It does its level best in every circumstance
to do its duty. That its understanding of the world of COPS falls
short can be taken as a comment either on what is missing from the
show or what is lost in the process of extraction of meaning. It's
both of course, but they compound in unpredictable ways.
projects like I Like to Watch / CopVision, it has become
possible to imagine a day when automated of media consumption can
finally keep pace with digital production. Our machines may spare
us the work of watching.