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Will.i.am: 'Coding Is The New Rap'

Jun 8th 2012 | 12:02pm | Scott Fitzsimons
Will.i.am, global pop superstar with his band The Black Eyed Peas, Intel's Director of Creative Innovation and "technology activist", has claimed that computer coding is the way of the future. At an invite-only panel for Vivid Ideas at the Museum Of Contemporary Art last night the musician went as far as to compare the art of coding to rap, and said that the spread of recognition will spread as rap spread out of America.

Using the tagline "code is dope", he said, "Rap has spread around the planet... Code hasn't spread around the world yet, it's the new thing. But it needs discipline."

He added, "When I see a coder it's like pirates finding the Caribbean, it's like a whole new thing."

The panel, which also featured Sydney-based artist Justene Williams, will.i.am's Creative Consultant DJ Keebz and The Spinifex Group's Rene Christen, attempted to discuss the process behind the creation of the light installations for Vivid Sydney - particularly the interactive light and sound installment on the Museum.

The panel, which was dictated by will.i.am, was largely a pat-on-the-back for the creative team.

He started by saying, "Transition of yesterday and tomorrow, and I don't mean that poetically, but literally. The way a city is designed is old school. But you walk down Vivid Sydney and it's new school. But it's still old school for what it's gonna look like in the future."

With a strong focus on the importance of intellectual property - and putting names to ideas - he said that it was a shame that people responsible for developments in art history aren't remembered by name.

"Who's the harp motherfucker?" he posed to the select audience at one point. "Who's Mr flautist? Who created the fucking flute?... We haven't seen the Picasso or Mozart or Da Vinci of coding yet".

But he couldn't leave the panel - and indeed Vivid Sydney - without throwing a joke in: "What do The Jetsons and The Flinstones have in common? There's no black people... It's fucked up."

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