We invite digital thinkers and creative coders working in any medium to join us in exploring the complex layers of going from beadwork into code. This presentation, discussion and code-tank uses Southern African beadwork as a starting point for the exploration of beadwork patterns as a reference for complex mathematics in coding. Tegan Bristow and Alex Coelho will illustrate their research on the complexities and politics of generating a ‘vocabulary of vernacular algorithms’ and a culturally specific creative coding curriculum. This session is part of a communal research project initiated and led as a collaboration between Dr. Tegan Bristow and Russel Hlongwane in South Africa and Alex Coelho and Joao Roxo in Mozambique.
The session will begin with a short presentation exploring the histories of ethno-mathematics within scholarship on African knowledge and technology; go on to unpack the complexities of a ‘vocabulary for vernacular algorithms’ and explore examples in code. Following this the session invites participants to contribute, comment and explore in code - solutions towards a vocabulary for vernacular algorithms. The entire session should run for two hours, and include time for participants to present explorations to the forum.