Reabracadabra, Videotex animated poem shown in 1985 in the group exhibition Arte On-Line, a national videotext art gallery presented by Companhia Telefônica de São Paulo. Tesão, Recaos, and D/eu/s are all Videotext animated poems shown online in the group exhibition Brazil High-Tech (1986), a national videotext art gallery organized by Eduardo Kac and Flavio Ferraz and presented by Companhia Telefônica de São Paulo.
These works were created with the Brazilian videotext network (which was the same system as the French “Minitel”).
The videotext system allowed users to log on with a remote terminal and access sequences of pages through regular phone lines. This videotext network was a precursor to today’s Internet and functioned very much like it, with sites containing information about countless subjects. It also allowed users to send messages to one another (email). Different countries, such as UK, France, Japan, Canada, USA and Brazil, implemented different versions of the videotext concept under their own names. The UK called it Prestel. The Brazilian system was dubbed Videotexto. In Canada it was known as Telidon. In the USA the network was named Videotex.
Under the name “Minitel,” France implemented a comprehensive videotext network that was widely used throughout the 1980s. In 1984 Minitel terminals were distributed to subscribers free of charge, which helped to further popularize the network. From 1983 to 1994 (the year of the Internet boom), use of the Minitel grew continuously. In 1995 there were 7 million Minitel terminals in France. Although most countries no longer use videotext, the medium is still employed in France. It is also possible to access the Minitel through the web.