The Kinematic Subject

The Vehicular Experience of Speed and Automobility in Virtuality/Reality

sense of dissociation from the environment, a lesser sense of speed, and thus an arguably increased perceived distance between places.

Buffers impede the rate of stimuli travelling in the loop between kinematic subject and environment. In a mechanical vehicle, the dashboard dials, gauges etc mediate the raw data regarding the current state of the vehicle. When combined with the context of the external environment, this data becomes meaningful to the driver. Interestingly, the driving experience differs when this information is not present in the interface. The peripheral interface in metabolic vehicles is typically determined by the ‘overhang’ of the eye sockets. Likewise, the edges of car windscreens indicate the driver's visual zone of attention (Dant, 2004: 76). This can be also be compared with the experience inside a theatre, where the area surrounding the stage is often decorated with a proscenium, which is darkened once the show starts. A proscenium, like any interface, indicates a boundary between reality and fiction. Similarly, the outer casing of televisions and computer monitors has the same affect. The car frame also defines the edges of the windscreen, defining the boundary between interior and exterior. As is argued later in the project, buffers alter the perception of a dynamic between safety and danger, produced by the kinematic subject’s automobility potential.