_Cybernetic Orchestra

The Cybernetic Orchestra is McMaster’s live coding laptop orchestra, founded in early 2010, is open to all members of the McMaster community. The orchestra meets weekly and produces performances on campus, off campus, streamed to the Internet, and at international peer-reviewed artistic conferences and festivals (often serving as a vector introducing undergraduate and graduate students to the various international milieus of artistic research). The Orchestra has released four albums: esp.beat (2012), Shift (2013), bilingual (2015), and Chiptunes (2018), with the fifth album slated for release in 2020.

_macGRID Simulation Research Network

macGRID is an international multidisciplinary simulation research and creation network of academic and artist members working in an Open Simulator grid of virtual environments, hosted on Canada Computes SHARCNET high performance computing infrastructure of 250 linux servers. macGRID research and creation activities include the development of virtual city environments that leverage high performance networked computing, machine learning and big data to design and test virtual world and simulation use cases for education, urban planning, civic engagement, storytelling, film, games, and emerging new media art forms.

_Imaginary Landscapes

Imaginary Landscapes is a twice-yearly festival of media art and performance, produced by CNMAP in close collaboration with various teaching departments at McMaster. The festival is a flexible, highly visible site for the on-campus mobilization of arts-based research, and features work by undergraduate and graduate students alongside work by community members, guest artists, and faculty researchers.

_Communications Governance Observatory

The Communications Governance Observatory, led by Dr. Sara Bannerman, Canada Research Chair in Communication Policy and Governance, seeks to deepen our understanding of the global networked governance of communication and creativity. Communication is increasingly regulated by technologies and private organizations, as well as by governments. Governance by a plurality of actors is known as ‘networked governance’. Networked governance raises important questions about who governs, and how regulators are kept accountable. The Communications Governance Observatory works to describe and critically assess the networked governance of communication and creativity.


This lab, directed by Dr. Paula Gardner, is funded by the Asper Foundation. The team collaborates to adapt technologies for socially responsible innovation and to foster social change. Driven by feminist, intersectional, anti-oppression, and participatory action approaches, Pulse Lab aims to foster digital literacy and digital inclusion, in a practice that is technologically agnostic and values art and design methods. We seek to network our diverse research partners (that include community, non-profit, health and creative industries) in projects that adapt digital and emerging technologies to address pressing social, cultural and material needs in Canada. These projects currently address gender based violence, digital exclusion of marginalized youth, newcomer integration, and the rehabilitative and affect needs of growing senior populations.

_Networked Imagination Laboratory (NIL)

This laboratory, created and led by Dr. David Ogborn with support from the Canada Foundation for Innovation and Ontario’s Ministry of Research and Innovation, is focused on the development of software interfaces and practices in which the collaborative potentials of networking are unfolded into new models. The NIL is particularly oriented towards arts-based research in live coding (programming as an act of performance), network music (collaborative music making over the Internet), and provides an immersive and adaptable environment replete with spatially-distributed loudspeakers, visual displays, virtual reality equipment, and high performance computing resources.

_Software Studies Reading Group

This reading group, a collaboration with the Sherman Centre for Digital Scholarhip, is focused on the field of software studies, which interprets software (and more generally, computational culture, computers, networking, etc) as historical and cultural artifacts. Members have included faculty and graduate students from diverse fields, including Anthropology, Philosophy, Political Science, and Communication, New Media and Cultural Studies, and others.

_Sound Studies Reading Group

This reading group focuses upon the highly interdisciplinary field of sound studies, which brings together scholars interested in epistemologies, histories, ecologies, and politics of sound as they intersect with media, music, technology, and other cultural formations.

_Summer Workshops

The Node 9 Summer Workshops are a unique opportunity for growth and knowledge exchange in new media and performance. The workshops are open to adult participants of all levels of experience and background, and are provided at very minimal or no cost. The workshops are divided into parallel streams (for example: audio programming, multimedia storytelling) with featured presentations and a culminating event that brings together participants from diverse forms of new media and performance practice.

_Agile Film Making