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John Maeda, associate professor of design and computation at MIT’s Media Lab, leads a new generation of techno-artists who are pushing the boundaries between computer programming and design. For his 2003 New York exhibit “F00D” (F-zero-zero-D), Maeda produced digital images of everyday edibles – condiments, snacks, canned goods. He then wrote image-processing software that broke the images into discrete pieces – say, the individual crystals in a sugar packet – which he could then rearrange at will. While computer science enables his art, the reverse is also true, as Maeda develops programming tools to fulfill his artistic ambitions.

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