I was over in Sweden last month attending 7workshops7 organised by 1scale1, a research lab based in Malmö city. The workshops were all about interaction design and prototyping with open source hardware and software tools, mainly arduino, processing , reacTIVision, PD and some PCB design in Eagle as well. We also built a ‘Smapler‘. A lot of ground was covered in the two weeks and I headed back home with a new bag of tricks and fresh inspiration.
Below is a work in progress shot from my ‘Alternative Displays’ project, it’s a 4 x 4 grid of square electromagnets. These are controlled by an Arduino and a Djuicer (a custom circuit designed especially for the workshop by 1scale1). A framed sheet of perspex goes on top of these and it contains a layer of industrial printer toner. When the magnets are switched on the the metal fibres stand up and you see a ‘pixel’ in the dust. Thanks to Mattias, Tony and David at 1scale1 for all their help making this. Next step is to have custom animations appear in the dust and have it respond to some external inputs.
Reverse Graffiti is something totally original and organic, Paul “Moose” Curtis uses a powerwasher and stencils to create his art, cleaning the grime off polluted city walls to create murals of scenic forest vistas. This video clip is from an upcoming documentary by Doug Pray (who directed the turntablism documentary Scratch). I’m looking forward to watching this… more information at reversegraffitiproject.com.
So the annual Darklight festival happened again in Dublin, one of the events I attended there was a video circuit bending workshop by Karl Klomp organised by DATA. Over two days participants found out about uncovering visual glitches in video effects hardware and then hardwiring and controlling these. Apart from distorting the inputted video we were also shown methods of hacking these machines text / graphics chip (the part that generates teletext text or channel information) and how to sync this up to an external audio source, making an audio visualiser.
It was a lot of use for my work, I found out a bit more about how all the components work and how to read the circuit board, also picked up some handy soldering tips. The piece of video hardware I had to play with was a Vanguard VA-445 A/V Edit System, now with 4 externally housed switches added to trigger off video glitches. Here’s a good interview about Mr Klomps work from makezine and some youtube footage of another video bending workshop.
Here are some recent projects from my Multimedia Group Project module for year 2 of the Creative Multimedia degree at DKIT. The student groups were each given a toy and assigned the task of hacking it together with a keyboard to create a controller for an original interactive experience made in flash and/or director. Continue Reading →
Back in December 2007 ABC launched ‘Find 815‘, the second alternate realty game promoting Emmy award winning TV series ‘Lost‘. In the first interactive part of the experience a laptop screen was shown full of fictitious email addresses. One of these was a hotmail address, it turned out it wasn’t registered… so I registered it 🙂 For the next few days I documented reactions to the minor ripple in the expanded Lost universe that is Zeke Klotho Freundlich. So anyways here’s a link to a podcast talking about it, the recording also features some words from the creators of the ‘Adopt a Space Monkey‘ / ‘Aftermath 08‘ ARG.
I hope the story is interesting, apologies to anyone involved with making the ARG that was inconvenienced by my actions… it was all in the name of research, honest! 😉 Namaste!
I downloaded the Zbrush demo and sculpted this head… it was fun to make, the process is very organic – you start off with a sphere and mould it like you would a piece of clay… this is pretty basic compared to what the pro’s make with zbrush… like Beowulf!
I’ve had a short loop I made in LSDJ on the Nintendo Gameboy included as a locked groove (infinitely repeating loop) on the Minimalizm v4 compilation. I always wanted to have some sound I made pressed onto wax, then I found this project and thought I’d give it a go. The venture is funded by the loop creators each agreeing to buy a small number of records. You email on a .wav file of your track as a 4 bar, 133 bpm loop, compilation organisers Noise Vinyl take care of the rest and it becomes part of a 7″, 33 rpm vinyl record.
CDs and MP3s are fine and all, but Vinyl has a charm all of its own, both soundwise and from it’s tangible form and it doesn’t look like it’s going to die out any day soon. This article from Wired suggests that vinyl will outlive cds commercially… and if there’s a power cut you could always listen to your records on this, though perhaps not at audiophile levels 🙂
“The Bubbles Of Radio” is an interesting project by students from AHO in Norway where they cataloged different radio frequency types in the style of a nature watch booklet. Each signal type was given a latin-style name, for instance Bluetooth is Nevrotis Dentus Aquarae and RFID is Raptus Arphadus and accompanied by creative illustrations that show them as visible, tangible parts of the environment. Full information including a PDF chart of the visualisations are at Nearfield.org.
Just stumbled across this website from Japan all about robots and found the very impressive walking, fist throwing robot by Vstone called the Black Ox . It stands a mighty foot and a half high, has twenty articulation points and will lay waste to any miniature cityscape or opponent that stands in its way. The Black Ox is the nemesis of Gigantor, from a manga first published in 1956. It’s great to see a fictional character brought to life like this, next step will be a full-scale model 🙂