Nocturnal Web

Hence the whole semester was my decay into madness, the leading theme of the the forth week for me was insomnia. It started significantly affecting my cognitive abilities to focus and think critically. I was sleeping for 4-5 hours a day, barely feeling rested.

First, I wrote down all the things that create my friction with sleeping here.

But it wasn't it. Though existence felt like swimming through a really dense liquid, I enjoyed the quietness of the night, dim light and empty streets. I started walking outside or reading til 6am, it was better than staring at the ceiling.

That’s when the idea of this project came to my mind. I decided to create a website made only for such nocturnal creatures like me. I wrote simple code that was showcasing the content only in-between 00:00 and 05:00 based on your time-zone. And then started thinking what is that I want to show to these sleepless people? Do I want to keep them awake? Help them fall asleep? Entertain?

And then I remembered these carpets that all post-soviet children stared at. Grandmother’s home, dacha, apartment of a family friend - we all saw these things hanging on the walls. And many of us were used to looking at them, into them at night, finding action movies in these patterns, finding characters and landscapes. These carpets were all alike and never the same. And there was something endlessly entrancing in their boringness.

So I decided to create a digital carpet.

Each element is constantly slooowly moving, but the user can light it up with a mouse only inside a restricted area. So that it always seemed that something is different and is not the same as it was before.  

And you can see it only by paying the price of not getting enough sleep.  I find this project to be a very good illustration of what experience of chronic insomnia is like. This thin line between choice and inertia, curiosity and boredom.

If you are not struggling with insomnia and enter the website during the day, you will see this:

Good luck!