A Game of Cloak and Data
deadSwap 2.0 is an android app which lets you coordinate a clandestine communications and off-line sharing network. The technique is the same as the old classic spycraft one of ‘dead drop’, Participants share a flash memory archive, e.g. a USB stick, hiding it in public space. Participants are informed about the current location of the archive through SMS on their cell phones. The deadSwap 2.0 system allows anyone to initiate a distributed sharing session which continues until all members of the network have found the memory device.
Most participants remain ‘sleepers’ who become activated by SMS to go look for a hidden memory device. When they are activated, they become ‘rabbits’. Once they successfully find the hidden device they become ‘agents’ and, after completing any necessary operations on the device (such as copying or adding data), they must hide the device again and inform the system of the new Swap location.
Participants in the network can contribute whatever data they like to the sharing round by simply copying it onto the deadSwap storage device. For the transmediale edition, deadSwap 2.0 comes pre-loaded with DATAFIELD3, as special selection of Henry Warwick's massive offline shared archive.