|t.m.: i get what you mean in that mediation is ultimately inescapable, but it feels like that you should at least always be pushing it. hacking cartridges, programming in assembly - we escaped the mediation of consumer software and those pieces served as a critique at/of the time just because they existed alongside all the other macromedia whitewash. but the Nintendo NES imposed it's own structure, and at the first BEIGE show in 2001 cory and i gave a talk at the opening and someone (i think it was joe beuckman, actually) asked us why dont we build our own hardware? our answer was that we weren't smart enough.
why bother to specifically hack a Nintendo if not to comment on some specific aspect of the culture that the Nintendo helped to foster? for me the interest is in the little turing-complete nugget thats sitting inside it, supposedly rendered inaccessable by the proprietary NES hardware, which is then opened up and laid out as a medium. the problem is when it feels as if it's then rendered inaccessible again, to most viewers, by the pop culture references that surround it.