this is ronline?  
by Rupert Jaeger, 26th July 2004  
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In November, it will be two years that has been online. To present online ‘something’ that isn’t sure itself what it is and every time it thinks it is, keeps changing, is not easy as such. To keep some sort of consistency in that enterprise is even more difficult.

As the designer and architect of I have approached the site and its upkeep based on two principle understandings:
Firstly, all along I have seen the site not just as a means to an end. In other words, to me it is not simply an online presentation of what rentner (collective) does in the ‘real’ world. I approach it also as an artwork, which to some extent frees me from the task of presenting what exactly rentner collective is. Instead it is one of its many possible interpretations.
However, secondly, the site as an artwork had to be limited to the appropriate aspects of the site, so that it can also operate as a real, practical and useful tool for anyone linked to rentner collective. The aspect that seems most adequate for that purpose is the site’s structure. Keeping my artistic influence on the site limited to its structure, allows for the content to be of any possible nature, and therefore the structure provides the skeleton, around which the ever changing ideas, concepts, artwork etc that constitute rentner collective can be mold.
At this stage, the structure might be the most dominant aspect of the site, yet with the growth of content, it will take on its real purpose: to act as a navigation tool through the site for any end user.

I am aware that there would be simpler ways of presenting online some of the things we have done (like our exhibitions), yet I think the site could and should be much more than a simple online representation of our activities. It should in itself entail an activity. As an interactive medium, this activity should obviously be of an ‘interactive’ nature. As a communication tool for people within and with the collective, it could help the artistic (and other) progression of rentner collective as a whole as well as any individual working within that context. I believe that up till now, the site has not even touched on its real potential in this respect.

We are currently (once again) in a crucial stage for rentner collective and thus for Through some of the projects undertaken within the last year, we could clarify many questions, but as always posed as many. For the site the main question remains: what is its role and purpose within rentner collective and how can it fulfill it. The answer to this question has to grow from a discourse between the people who use the site, by posing more questions, by challenging what the site currently is (or wants to be), by proposing ideas, etc. etc. And this discourse has to take place within the context of the site and that is exactly what ronline is intended to be for.

Therefore, if you have any comments, suggestions, ideas, or indeed anything that might seem relevant to the above, share it. Ideally this should be in a form that can be published in the context of ronline, but any response is helpful.
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