Thinking the Unthinkable House

In 1997, during the early public era of web design, Thinking the Unthinkable House was created in lieu of a printed book for an exhibition at the Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago. At 640 Megabites, the website was too big to exist on the web at the data speeds then available, so the project was distributed as a CD-ROM.

The project’s main work was The Loaf House, an operable digital space populated by embedded sounds, videos, websites and hyperlinks. Most of the embedded websites have atrophied, foreseen at the time, and it was reckoned that the last one standing would be the IRS tax site, which is pretty much the case. Care was taken to add scores of hyperlinks to commingle The Loaf House, B52 Bombers, Michelangelo’s Laurentian Library and the Appliance House, along with a raft of sketchbooks and publications.

Thinking the Unthinkable House is presented here as an archival document. Its 800 x 600 size remains unaltered and all the audio, video and links operate as designed. After 18 years there will be stuff that doesn't work, or looks weird, but that is the nature of digital technology. Ww do not recommend viewing this on a phone. This will open in a pop-up 800 x 600 window. For the best viewing experience disable pop-up blocker (there are pop-ups within the pop-up). The video and audio files have been updated. The original opening screen and instructions are preserved here.

Ben Nicholson - Thinking The Unthinkable House