Robert A. Fischer
Ich / Buchstabendrescher
Robert A. Fischer, also known as Bob, Bobby “What Next,” Robert Baru Fischer, Roberto HaHa! and Robert O’Fisher. The desktop rock star, art critic, author, media artist, and anthropologist left behind approximately 20,000 digital text files about music, new technologies and Zeitgeist. This book presents a modest selection of 239 texts.
Typing on average between 3,000 and 4,000 characters a day, Bob Fischer pounded his thoughts directly into his machine (Archiv der Gegenwart) in the tradition of the écriture automatique—leaving them unrevised. He used various pseudonyms for various formats, wrote both sober and drunk, rarely or almost never using a spelling or grammar check, on many different kinds of computers. Only his published texts were edited, but Fischer did not always save that version; he preferred the original versions that reflected his stream of consciousness.
To Fischer the computer was a neurological prosthesis that relieved him of part of the “complicated mechanism of writing (speed, employing memory, legibility ... ).” Over the years the pounding at his desk became a form of littérature brute, replete with typos and crude spelling errors. He characterized his work as speculative research literature. His native tongue was French, but he mostly wrote in German, and sometimes English and French. It is true that he had difficulty writing, he commented in retrospect, “but I always did manage to write!” (Gina Bucher)