The Chris Yates Tracking System is The Best Thing That's Ever Happened To Me and I Bet It'll Be The Best Thing That's Ever To Happened To You

My work has always been about discovery, exploration, and communication. In the last 9 years, I have tried different outlets of creativity and found that I enjoyed mixing media, simply learning different techniques and adding versatility to my arsenal. The products of my explorations may not be as significant to me as the processes of their creation, but their contemplation leads me to the next step. I started acting at the age of 10, then picked up the saxophone, learned darkroom photography, ran my high school radio station, started and edited a humor magazine, learned how to weld, picked up the bass, directed and wrote plays and movies, and then I came to RISD. Choosing sculpture as a major allowed me the freedom to learn not only wood, metal,

and casting techniques, but also the time to learn other skills, by taking classes in other departments, and also some self-taught.

I began the Chris Yates Tracking System as a whim in the winter of 1999. I was frustrated with the problem of what to do with my student work after critiques. I would be very engaged with my work during the process of making, but then felt like the work lost it's life once in was gathering dust in the basement, or in the dumpster. Why spend months of passionate obsession on a project only to have it destroyed or hidden in a box or portfolio. Either my work was too big or an installation, and was impossible to preserve in it's intended state. Photos and paintings were shown in a critique, and then hidden away in boxes to be seen by only me. I asked myself how I could affect people with my ideas, while still in school. How could I make work at the scale I wanted to, and in an environment that was appropriate and complementary? So I decided to expand the size of my ongoing making and littering, of Chris-made objects, to the world. Having the modern luxury of an geographical understanding of the world informed by maps, interstates, easy air travel, Risk games; I had an adventurous and imperialistic notion of combining the Great American Roadtrip and a good reason to stick pins in a map. So when the electricity went out that Providence winter for a week, my 3 roommates and I had a lot more time to just sit and talk and make art in candlelight in the main room. We tossed around different things we could do to make a roadtrip to Canada interesting and worthwhile even in February. Out of the brainstorm came the idea of a Chris Yates Tracking Device, which simply would be a numbered marker with contact information, that denoted nothing else but that I had visited that location. I could even keep a log book and write instructions, and take photos of each Device and it surrounding environs. I made 12 crude wooden markers with my email address painted on, and scattered them in scenic spots during a 4-day road trip to northern Ontario, specifically Manitoulin Island. I kept the log book in which I kept instructions, photographs, collages, and other information. I took detailed sets of photos of the Tracking Device in its new home, and recorded the time and date.

Once I returned to Providence, I found that two people had actually responded to my Devices, #11 on Manitoulin Island in Ontario, and #1 in New Hampshire. I realized that that this Tracking System could facilitate communication between myself and any person who might stumble on these Devices and have a curious mind. I became more excited in creating interesting forms to attract potential respondents. Just the idea that someone might find one of these devices made the project more worthwhile. I felt as if I could make the world into a treasure hunt, the treasure being places of interest or beauty, the Device simply a marker. So the Devices themselves became less important than the system as a whole.

As I was (usually) the only one present at the Device's deployment, documentation was as important as the installation, and became more important as I developed different ways to convey this information. Graphically, I got to take lots of pictures, organize and edit maps to convey travel data, and eventually, develop an entire web site directory of the images and information. As the complexity of the Devices and the breadth of the Missions became larger in scope, I acquired a global positioning system device, as well as a digital video camera to document the journey as much (and sometimes more) as the destinations. I have kept the information in 3 log books, an information video, a kiosk consisting of: 3-d relief maps with photographic "pins" marking the 100 Device's positions throughout North America, Australia, and New Zealand; 3 looping videos; the log books; and 35 signs with quotes and pictures from the Tracking Team and the Respondents; as well as a web site. So working in this way allowed me to switch between different "phases" of work: developing and constructing a series of Devices, planning a trip, travelling and deployment, photographing and notation, compiling data, recieving response, constructing presentations, and of course explaining the whole thing quite a bit. As I never been one to sit still for too long, this challenge has kept my attention more so than any I have devised in the past.

Speaking about the Tracking Devices formally, they reflect a development of formal ideas in different materials over the last two years. Even though I hope at some point to begin creating the actual Devices on site (in their intended location) but in the Deployments so far I created all the Devices in a studio facility. The first three missions (Devices 1-35, Feb-Aug 1999) featured three wooden posts screwed together perpendicularly, creating a 3d "X" shape. In the second and third missions, the posts were sharpened; and the second series also was unpainted and had twine connecting the tips. They were pretty basic, really, but the photographed well, with a nice, colorful "X" literally marking the spot. 6 out of 35 of the "X" type have been responded to.

For the fourth mission (Devices 36-40, Dec 1999), I was inspired by a picture I saw of a bronze gripping hand around a mature tree, it was squeezing the tree to 3 inches, looking like an hourglass. It had been inserted when the tree was a sapling 40-odd years ago, and the idea struck me to use trees as a way to "activate" a Device. The hand referenced man's impact on nature, and was constantly interacting with the tree, marking time. If I wanted to make Devices that I knew would be there for 40 years, this would be a way. My reaction to this idea was more abstract, to reflect the style of the Devices thus far. I made 5 8-inch rings out of rebar, and added 2 radial spokes with an orange tennis ball at the end, and painted the metal purple. I computer-printed the legend, and epoxied it between a layer of metal and plexiglass. Only two of them actually made their way onto live trees, but they were a change of thinking about placement in their locations. They were placed "around" a tree, a post, a fence, and that element then became part of the Device. Zero out of 5 of the "Ring" type have been responded to.

Four months later, for the fifth mission (Devices 41-45, April 2000), I made welded assemblages of steel bits from scrap barrels, presumably left over from blacksmithing demos. It made sense to recycle this waste of perfectly interesting set of curvy and hammered out lines. I found more rebar to use as posts for these larger assemblages. I positioned the plaque on top, on a angled square of metal, with a hot-folded piece of plexiglass enclosing the computer-printed legend. This made the metal "post" speak more as a trail marker or sign than the previous series, where the contact information was not a prominent. I regarded these five as a sort of "breakout" in my work, where I could set up basic rules for the series, but still have each individual device quite different, adding more variety and work in the particulars of one at a time. Up until this point there was more of an assembly line technique. Zero out of 5 of the "Linear Post" type have been responded to.

Returning to the idea of grasping Nature, mission six (Devices 46-53, June 2000) featured clear polyester resin hands, four cast in the shape of my hand, and four cast in rubber gloves. I stamped my email address into metal plaques and embedded them into the base of the hand during the casting. To make each hand unique, I also embedded a small plastic animal into each hand. This process allowed me to experiment with a new material, as well as see the advantages of casting when working in multiple. As tempting as it would be to cast identical Devices for each mission, I think the challenge of the process would be lost. Consistency is perhaps trumped for invention. I also enjoyed placing these hands quite a bit, positioning them on an exposed root, an elm branch, or a rocky outcropping. These Devices referenced my body and were a "ghost" of my corpereal hand touching that very spot. Also their transparency was a new aspect that was quite attractive when photographed. This was to lead directly to the next development. 1 out of 8 of the "Hand" type have been responded to.

I went to Australia for an exchange semester at Sydney College of the Arts to study glass for five months. Here, I developed the most successful series yet, missions seven and eight (Devices 54-69, Sept-Nov 2000). Once I could actually blow rudimentary glass and not flub up too much, my studio partner Holly Williams, a New Zealander, and I blew 16 thick glass "bulbs" of various sizes and shapes, with a hole on it's top and bottom. I then made rubber decals for each number, and sandblasted the number into each bulb. Some were round, some pear-shaped, some more like mason jars. I then fabricated 13 steel "skeletons" which were made from scraps again, but were made to mimic the human body in a very abstract sense, and were made to pierce the bulb, and entrap it at the top, like a head. I spray-painted them vibrantly, and added color computer-printed plaques, laminated, and zip-tied to the steel posts. These skeletons also had stable "tripod"-like legs. In planning this first trip half-way around Australia, I had to first convince three of my roommates to come with me during the Olympics Break. (We were in Sydney, and they chose our trip over the big Games) Then we had to buy a van, get it registered, I built a platform in the back to sleep on, and to store the fragile and unwieldly Devices underneath. (And luggage too) I even designed a carport for the van in our empty backyard. Once we embarked on the mission, it was a pure joy to find locations, and I had more people come with me on the trip off and on than ever (17). The main reason the mission was successful was that 6 people responded to the "Bulb/Skeleton" type out of 13 Devices! I'm not sure if it was the seductive quality of glass, or the friendly, adventure-ready bush-walkers of Australia. Also important was that I, in contrast with the dense NorthEast US, had no problem finding suitable "middle-of-nowhere" spots in the outback of Australia. The abrupt changes in landscape were seen through the distortion of their image in glass, and recorded on videotape, and signaled the beginning of real success with this project.

The three remaining glass globes had to wait until November to be deployed, and were hung from trees. I used synthetic fiber rope with various wooden "stoppers" and a unique-shape plaque strung on it. I filled one with marbles, one with feathers, and one with water. These "stuffings" were a reaction to what can be done with a glass vessel to make it more seductive, attractive as an object. The most important part of these three isolated installations was that I had a member of the Tracking Team film me as I deployed each Device. I enjoyed the dramatic aspect of executing the deployment as a performance, showing a little more of the Chris Yates in the Tracking System. Until then I wasn't sure if I wanted to be totally anonymous, my name as a tag, or a brand; but filming the deployment, and collaborating on the trips more adds more dimensions of story and narrative to the project. Of course the documentation of the System, no matter how objective and fact-filled, is auto-biographical, and tells the story of where I've been, what I've learned, and who I've met that's made a difference. It has also kept me in better contact with the people who have come with me on these missions, and the ones I've met while on them. 1 out of the 3 "Hanging Bulb" Devices have been responded to.

I met up with my father in New Zealand for mission nine (Devices 71-85, December 2000), and I was in a pickle. We were just road-tripping for 3 weeks, and I had no studio in which to manufacture Devices. After thinking it over for a few days, I bought a box of pool balls, a bag of colored golf tees, some epoxy and paint. I painted out the numbers on the balls and numbered them 71-85, and epoxied 4 tees on each, in a sort of "land mine"/"virus" style. The idea of using objects that already were numbered sets interested me, I also looked at lottery drawing balls, mileage signs, and sports jerseys. Using a sphere shape echoed the bulbs, and the use of sport equipment seemed to acknowledge that I was allocating their use into my own game. Aestheticly, they worked fine, and I would love to make giant versions of them, although their small size allowed me to transport them much easier. I've recieved 2 responses to the 15 "Pool Mine" Devices.

The most recent series, deployment ten (Devices 86-100, Feb 2001) was conducted over a week in the US, after six weeks of fabrication in my Wintersession blacksmithing class. These devices were steel signs with lettering that spelled out "Chris Yates Tracking Device #x", inserted into a rounded wooden base. These signs took longer to make than any previous Devices, and were more varied as well. In researching the use of steel as sculptural type, I looked at numerous traditional blacksmithing design stylebooks, art deco posters, and a lot of David Smith. I think Smith's hard-nosed, hard-working mentality contrasted with the lyricism and delicate beauty he creates out of metal inspired me the most, but there was a specific sculpture called "The Letter Y" which seemed to spark this series. Smith's way of fusing welding, grinding, and forging into intricately modulated lines in space. His sculptures, when placed outside, create a system of modern totems that frame the sky and create thousands of different "drawings". I thought quite a bit about his way of communicating to/for/with nature with metal as I worked on designs for this series. I made different sign motifs, from the flowery, to punch-cut lettering, torch-cut letters, traditional spirals, interstate signs, cartoon, one-way sign, and even self-portrait. Working with metal in a linear, flat sense was interesting, for it combined the blacksmithing process with graphic design. The resulting photos and video were also exciting for the self-referential Devices superimposed their designation over the sea, sky, or snow. I was very satisfied with this execution of this series. An important aspect of this journey was my Tracking Team colleague for this adventure, Roddy Richards. We drove his Jeep Cherokee, which we had equipped with a laptop computer connected to a GPS locator, as well as a cell phone, and a CD cd player, and 4-wheel drive; ammenities I haven not had in my beat-up Toyota Camry. By having the entire road atlas of the US at our fingertips, and our actual location on the map updated every 3 seconds, it added a whole new dimension to finding deployment locations. Between the car, and our cameras and phones, it was the most high-tech mission yet. 3 out of 15 Devices were responded to of the "Lettered Sign" type.

By the end of this trip I had 53 Chris Yates Tracking Devices in the USA, covering 40 states; 15 in Canada, covering 7 provinces; 17 in Australia, covering 5 territories; and 15 in New Zealand, on both islands. I figured 100 was a good stopping point for now. So it was here the construction of the Kiosk began. But first, I'd just like to point out that even though the Devices themselves are important, the distance between them is incredible, and often the things I'll see on the way to find a location are much more interesting than my work. I put these Devices out as humble markers, to tempt someone to go find a wonderful out-of-the way place, or to reward those who have, and to allow them to access information about other such pockets of beauty. They also serves as points of reference in time and space for my autobiography, or the mapping of my actions. The trail I've left behind becomes a wake, that can be rippled and stirred up again to create larger waves. One hundred chances to play the game...the game which attempts to rekindle a sense of wonder about the world around us. There is no end result, only a process. You can push it as far or little as you wish, and in my role, I can accurately say the System is an efficent machine: the more I invest myself in the System, the more happiness, discoveries, growth, and response I recieve. I can say two clichéd things about this: The journey is indeed my destination, and the devices, well, pawns in a bigger game.

So what happens when someone contacts the Chris Yates Tracking Team? First of all, all of the 21 responses I've recieve have been via email, although my land address was on all but three series (6,8,9). An interesting fact that all the people who are interested enough in the thing to respond make their way to a computer, but fairly indicitive of the status of correspondence culture. The System makes a stance of embracing the exploration of our physical earth, and using technology of material fabrication, digital communication, and transportation to facilitate a networking of access points to a "floating" System. By "floating" I mean that there are such varied aspects in this process that any documentation of it stands as an entity of conveyance, but that book, paper, kiosk, or site is NOT the System itself. The floating identity of this process could be more accurately described as my "lifestyle" than any specific action or object.

So what do I say to a person who has found a Device? I reply promptly and formally, requesting the details of their engagement with the Device, and asking if they would like an text file of the current instructions for all of the Devices (now the website), and always using the formal "we" of the Chris Yates Tracking Team. Some are baffled, some are confused, some are eager. Michelle Cecala of Alexandria, VA, who discovered Tracking Device #16 on the Potomac River, went to the same middle school as me, 4 years later. We sent messages back and forth several times, talking about the area. Jon Robinson, of Dillsburg, PA, discovered #17 with his Boy Scout Troop (196) in a wintery valley. A park ranger at the Hopewell Rocks, NB (Canada), Denise Roy found #49 during a beach sweep at low tide and hasn't replied since. Gerard Glez, of Lissieu, France, found #60 in the Devils Marbles, Australia on vacation, and brought it back with him and put it in his garden in France. He has been very cooperative and enthusiastic, and even though my French is atrocious, and his English isn't much better, he mailed me four photos of himself with Device #60 in both locations. John Lumley of Forster, NSW (Australia), also reported the movement of #59 from Camooweal Caves to his girlfriend's backyard. A week ago I recieved word it got washed away in flood season. My cousin, Richard Yates, found #88 in Minnesota after I sent him instructions.

Many respondents describe the Device's location in detail, even though it has been found exactly where I left it in all the documented cases so far. When I start recieving more information on Devices that have migrated, then a new aspect of "tracking" is activated. What first marks places I have been physically, then marks the places the people who have been to the same place as I have been, and so on. The potential in integrating homing devices, web-cams, and mobility features in future series must be explored to expand my senses and my identity to all of these nexus points. Just knowing that I'll mostly likely be welcome a day 20 years from now at Gerard Glez's house in Lissieu, because I gave him a unique story to tell, makes all the effort worthwhile. It's more meaningful to reach out and give like this when you know you've affected at least one person. School critiques are evaluating the System from my end, whereas the System is more effectively discovered through discovery and response. My critiques view me and expose me as the puppeteer of the System, whereas by finding a Device, you are viewing the show, entering, and coming on stage. Granted, it's important to look at the System as a whole, but I'm more interested in getting people excited about getting up and going out there to have some adventure, rather than explaining everything about it. The mystery of the Devices is a case many of the respondents want to crack. But it's up to them if they want to bother to peel back enough layers to see it in it's full scope.

As the System became larger, I found more and more parallel concepts, and many were pointed out to me. Coming from RISD, the closest similarity is Shepard Farley's Andre The Giant Has a Posse/Obey sticker campaign. Farley explains his guerrilla adhesive graffitti as an experiment in Phenomenology, to make people wonder about the meaning of the stickers, and the barrage of messages we see every day. He started out handing out 100 stickers for a dollar on Thayer Street, and before he knew it, the stickers had reached as far as the travels of everyone who he appropriated this image to. Our projects have even "intersected" in several places, in Providence (18) and in Fraser Island, Australia (56); where I discovered an "Obey" in the men's bathroom of the Central Ranger Station. His selection of Andre as his "spokesman" was arbitrary, and added to the deceased wrestler's mystique. The use of my name is also somewhat default, it is not for the purposes of self-promotion, but a signifier as to where all this stuff has come from. The age-old tradition of posting messages in bottles and tossing them into the ocean, or affixing an address to a balloon and seeing who finds it, are two of the most obvious similarities. Perhaps in the future I may use these techniques to find people, but the first 100 have been intentionally deposited at a location, so that it may be documented, and then it's path is unknown. Floating or flying devices would be not as much markers, but emissaries. Wall Drug in South Dakota used to give out signs that you could post wherever you wanted, you can then take a picture of the sign, record it's location, and Wall Drug will post it in the store. There's signs near the Eiffel Tower, The Great Wall of China, and countless ones all over North America. Of course these signs are not as useful for directing one to the actual location of the store (the signified), as creating awareness of a single physical location by appropriating many nodes (the signifiers) where one can learn of Wall Drug. Billboards are not as mobile, but serve the same function of extending awareness of a concept, store, or service. With television, magazine and web advertisements as well, a company's presence can be superimposed in the mental environment, without the recipient of these messages neccessarily close to a physical location of these goods. With the System, I have tried to circumvent the monotony of this cluttered world of signs by making my markers, my advertisements, my physical trophies unique portals to this "floating" System. If I made them all the same, they would lose the individuality and character I invest in each creation and deployment. Homogenous devices would be no more important than the thousands of Golden Arches reaching for the sky around the world, the signposts of globalization. With the System, I seek out and celebrate the diversity of the physical world. My ideals and message are realized only though the use of hybrid mediums, echoing Marshall McLuhan's sentiments on the effect of new media on their content.

To display The Chris Yates Tracking System to RISD and my colleagues, I developed an Information Kiosk, that was installed in the Woods-Gerry Gallery in April 2001. I wanted to make an attractive installation of elements that conveyed different levels of information to the viewer. The first element created was the Overview Video, a 20-minute chronology of the 100 Devices, and explanation of their origin, mission objectives, and responses. The visual element was composed of still images and video of the devices, with superimposed text to locate each one in geography. Map animations and between-device footage were used to make transitions from one device to the next. I then added vocal dramatizations of email responses, recorded by 7 actor friends. Under all this I put together a mix of upbeat electronic music, to keep the momentum and energy throughout the journeys. Even over 20 minutes, the editing pace is fast, to show as many possible "angles" on each deployment. The video can be viewed traditionally or also on loop in a gallery installation. After standing back from the core of the System, condensed into this collage of various media, I realized I needed two more videos: One that just showed longer video clips of the process of travelling, since the main video was too packed to show anything but footage directly involved with a specific deployment; and Two, a video showing specific locations on a map for every device, as well as superimposed instructions (and Global Positioning System Co-ordinates if available). So I put those together and decided to have 3 looping video monitors in the core of the kiosk.

In contrast to the business of the monitors, The largest elements of the kiosk were topographical relief maps, cut out of fiberboard, joined, and painted. As there were many different ways I could show the documentation, I wanted to make sure there was sculptural aspects to their delivery to show the time and craft I put into my work. According to dimensions of the continent or islands, I welded grid-like stands to display the maps, reminiscent of longitude and latitude lines. These stands tilted the maps towards the viewer, making them somewhat like cartographic reliefs in a national park kiosk. I drilled holes into the maps for each device, and inserted 100 curved steel rods of various lengths and angles. On top of these rods were 3-inch wide fiberboard circles, painted, and then stickered with a circular cut-out picture of that device, with it's number and location superimposed. This method allowed people to quickly see where the devices are physically, and understand their relationships and deployment densities. Parts of Northeastern North America had so many holes in them and the picture disks were so close together that you could barely see the map. This effect was not intended, but a nice surprise, a bouquet of devices springing out in every direction, showing the country transformed by a blanketing of Chris Yates Tracking Devices. New Zealand, the smallest display, took longer than either North America or Australia, for it's mountainous spine of Southern Alps required much longer to cut out on a bandsaw than the lazy curves of flat Australia. Displaying the isthmus of Auckland, less than a kilometer wide, near the top of the North Island, on a traditional map is no problem; however, when cutting the outline of the coast out, the tiny strip connecting the Whangarei Peninsula and the mainland is so thin, it acts as a hinge and could snap very easily. It was a challenging and tedious process from the tracing, to cutting each level of each map, to painting, gluing, bending and cutting metal rod, cutting the circles, manipulating and printing each image, cutting those out, applying them to adhesive paper, cutting them into circles, applying them, welding the stands, installing, etc. But it was worth it, and with the 3 looping monitors as the nucleus, the maps moved people around the kiosk and you were rewarded with a different view or set of images at different angles.

To show how the people who've been involved with the System are as important or more than each of the Devices, I designed "highway signs" on the computer for the Tracking Team and the Respondents. More than two months before the show, I started soliciting the Respondents as a whole to email me a photo of themselves in return for a CYTS Prize Pack. If they couldn't do that, I asked them to send me their land address and then I could send them a Prize Pack with a disposable camera and return postage. I only recieved 4 pictures of Respondents of the 22 at the time. I put the text of their discovery message (and any other subsequent communication as well) on the sign, marking date, with their photo or a my photo of the device they found. With the Tracking Team (my companions on the different missions), I asked them to write a short paragraph on what they remembered from the trip, the deployment, or our time together in general. After a fair bit of electronic prodding, I recieved blurbs from all 21 Tracking Team members, and posted their text next to my photos or video stills of them, and one other relevant image. These green and white signs, printed on glossy photo paper, and then mounted on plywood panels, then screwed into two posts, divided by sign type. Some signs were also displayed on the wall for readability. It took a long time to read all the signs, and gave information a little more slowly than the video or the maps, but added more depth for those who wanted more details about how these people have been affected by the project and what they have added into the mix. The cast of characters who have/are interacting with the pieces of the set are important to understand the goals of the System. The diversity of these 43 people reflects the places I visited, and places I haven't; but travelling around Australia with a Norwegian, an Englishman, a Frenchman, and a guy from Georgia lets me learn about those places as well as add to the physical network of places I can go and find Team members. Without these people, I must stress, the System would not exist.

The last major element of this Kiosk was the 3 Log Books I've kept, spiral-bound sketchbooks carried on every mission, containing original documentation of each mission and device. These books are the most personal part of the documentation, for they have more character and randomness than the more organized, streamlined display modes of the signs, the maps, and the videos. If you wanted to see more images of any one device, or find it's instructions without waiting for the video, the books served as catalogs for the Kiosk, but also as artifacts from the Deployment Missions. The final element that completed the CYTS Information Kiosk was a 7-foot wide forged sign that used metal lettering in a similar way as Deployment Ten, and had the Chris Yates Symbol above the type.

All in all, it was a colorful, funky, yet organized display of four different media that channelled the floating information of the System, some empasizing some aspects over others. One could have a god-like view over the world, or experience it through a respondent's story, watch a video reveal the progression linearly, or jump from one point to another and simply feel the aura of the System. A major issue I was interested in was accessability. As the project is fueled by my need to use the outside world as an alternative to the traditional exhibition within a gallery, how I presented this documentation of this activity to any person was very important. I wanted to make the System transparent, so that it was not required to possess any "art vocabulary" to understand or draw conclusions about the Kiosk. I wanted to relate the System to my peers and the faculty as much as I wanted to draw in anybody with a curious inclination. I, however, borrowed instutional ways to display this information, unified type, simple, functional stands and poles for the maps, monitors, and signs. I eliminated personal aesthetics in creating the skeleton of the kiosk, to focus attention on the highly individual nature of the communicative elements. I didn't directly explain the project on a central sign, and that is not because I wish to make the System mysterious, but to show the viewer that there are many sides to the story, and that is up to them how many layers of information they penetrate in order to understand what I've done. But even to attract the casual observer, I needed to make the Kiosk substantial and well-crafted to indicate the importance of the content.

I found the Kiosk highly effective, but different, of course, than the actual process of making Devices or Deployment, or my verbal explanation, or any one medium explaining the System. I have found that some mediums are more effective in disseminating the information in some situations more than others, and it is important to the System that these modes of documentation are flexible and liquid, ready to change when the System does. That is why my current task at hand is the creation of the website, that will house a catalog of the major and minor System information, automate response, enhance interactivity with involved parties, as well as contain original video, music, sculpture, and set design work. The website can exist as a flexible portfolio, accessible to all, as well as the quickest and most immediate way to share information and effect change. The future is open wide, with a thousand possibilities waiting to be explored in the development of another 100 Devices. It would be futile to list the brainstorms I've had on future innovation, but streamlining the process of contact and location tracking through the website is a priority. The beauty of the System is in it's unlimited potential, and that's why the last two years, as amazing and rewarding as they have been, is only the Beginning of the Beginning. I will keep on pushing it farther until I just can no longer push.

No project has fully engaged my mind, spirit and body like the Chris Yates Tracking System. If I haven't been made sick of it after this much intense work and constant speculation, I know that it truly is a worthwhile vehicle in which to show the world what I can do and what I can give back. I feel lucky to have been made with enough tenacity to stick to it and share my love. My love of the outside world, of communication, of technology, of discovery, and of the feeling of magic. I hope Dan Harrington felt a little magic when he discovered #1 on a snowy baseball field in New Hampshire, because I did when he responded. The reason these good people respond is because the intrinsic generosity of leaving my work behind me is embodied in the physical marker, the Device, for others to enjoy if they happen to cross my wake. Buddhism has a concept called "dana", which is the good karma of giving back to the community, of feeding the monks, and the virtue of genorsity. I ask no reward for what I do, and so every response is a gift and I'm just glad to shared my experience with others.