The Longest Circuit

The Longest Circuit questions our conception of what we expect from modern communications technology. The installation features a light switch on wall, next to which is a light bulb. When the switch is pressed, instead of going straight to the bulb, the electrical signal travels from the switch to the internet, which it uses as a conduit to travel around the world, to Perth, Australia, before returning to illuminate the light bulb. It takes 600 milliseconds for the signal to travel around world. We do this very day but don’t realise that a residual part of our action has been travelling around the world.

We take it for granted that now have a shrunken world thanks to the global communications network – people traditionally separated by vast distances can now have an impact on each other in everyday activities, yet we rarely stop to ponder the implications of this development.

Materials used: Light bulb, Electric wire, Light switch, Computer, Server, Software, Relays, Internet.