Crank the Web is a browser that allows people to physically crank
their bandwidth in order to see a website. Simply enter a URL, start cranking, and text and images appear in the browser window.
The idea behind Crank the Web is to combine ancient forms of automation with today’s digital telecommunications technology. All bandwidth should be free and everyone should have access to the fastest speed connection. It is up to you to physically crank your bandwidth so that your internet connnection will rely on your personal strength, not personal wealth.
Users type in a URL on the screen and hit “ENTER” and a blank browser page appears. The page they entered is read into a buffer and using the crank, they send a bit of data at a time to the computer which then unloads the buffer (containing text, images, animation, sound, etc..) into the open window. The page loads according to how fast they turn the crank. There is an indication on screen of the approximate bandwidth speed they are cranking.
Video of Crank The Web at International Browserday, Cooper Hewitt, NYC.
Crank The Web installed at ITP/NYU (2001):
Crank The Web installed at the Interface Explorer conference (Vienna, Austria 10/18/2001):
Crank The Web installed at the ArtLabs: Connectivity Show, October 20 – November 3, 2007, Sibiu, Romania:
Crank The Web installed at the IKM installation in Geneva, June 24-27, 2008
Crank The Web installed at the Make:Craft Show at Otis College of Art and Design, Los Angeles, CA,Â October 2, 2010 â€“ December 4, 2010