December 17, 2007
December 16, 2007
I’ll preface this by saying that what I built is not what I intended to build when I started. I had discussed in class build a lamp that moved east and west through a room to mimic the movement of the sun. While the idea of celestial-mimicry still intrigues me, I realized that was it was missing was any kind of real interaction. What I’ve attempted to do here is wholly based on interaction and the meanings thereof. I kept thinking about the idea of a lamp, and one of the original problems I had had with my earlier plans: how to turn it on and off. The idea of turning something on and off kept me thinking for a while. What is at the essence of on-ness and off-ness for our objects? When it comes to a lamp, the usual interaction for light (the up/down switch) is actually a rather good interpretation of the on/off state in terms of light creation. Up is the sky, where the light comes from; down is the ground, where it doesn’t. Desk lamps, however, are far worse off in terms of their interactions, with everything from rotary switches to double pull double throw switches. What I wanted to do was to build in some kind of interaction that better represents on-ness and off-ness for a lamp. As you can see, when the lamp is upright, facing the sky, it is illuminated; when it is down, on the ground, it is not. It’s very simple, but it gets closer to the mental model of on/off that we actually have, shortening the mental distance between understanding and interaction.
So this exercise was mechanically a failure, but I ended up learning a great deal, making it ostensibly successful (this covers mechanical movement and motorized mechanical movement). The beauty of these automata is how with such simple mechanical movements, incredibly complex stories can be told. Mechanically, what I built was very simple, but a brain looking at it makes incredible assessments and leaps in logic, applying an entire innate knowledge base about hands and how they work. Such things aside, I learned a great deal from this project. Firstly, movement is complicated. That was a genuine lesson that I guess I had not quite internalized. As an industrial designer, I’m used to making rather static objects. The leap to the kinetic was a large one. I had a great number of difficulties with different parts of the movement. The cams were unsuccessful for several reasons, foremost their geometry. There was far too great a change in radius in either direction in too short an amount of time. Thusly, they were never fully incorporated. Among the other major hurdles I ran into were material choice for the “tendons,” the amount of throw for each of the finger joints, and having far too lofty of goals (my first idea was a Michael Jackson moonwalker-bot). Even though the project did not turn out the way I had originally hoped it would, people still responded very viscerally to the hand and were immediately drawn to it.
December 14, 2007
This chair is intended to provide thermal comfort for commuters. Overall I feel the project was a success, the chair is very effective at cooling the occupant at its 160CFM capacity. Please see poster PDF for full destription.Thermal Chair Concept Poster
December 11, 2007
December 6, 2007
Some nice work here, both interactive art and 3d visualization using Arduino boards and the Processing language.
November 20, 2007
There’s been a bit of a drastic change to my project since its first inception… (more…)
November 13, 2007
It’s kind of a stretch to call it furniture, but maybe you get it put in your home anyway. This was another project from DUX that I was talking bout today, which was done by a group in the UK. There is a lot of high level dance theory behind it which went over my head, but it’s basically these robotic legs that react to your movement. They had this in the exhibit hall and they let anyone try it. It entertaining to watch people get whacked by it while we ate.
SpiderCrab is concerned with design development for a robotic agent, using models and theories of performance. The focus is on ways that designers and performers work together as an interdisciplinary team. It will build and experiment with two prototypes for an originally-conceived robotic agent. The eventual 6-limbed, 2-metre high SpiderCrab robot will be a multi-sensorial mediation between architectural environment and dancing partner. A key objective will be for the human agent interacting with SpiderCrab to experience performative merging. A key novelty at this phase will be to integrate state of the art techniques for visual object detection and tracking into the body of the SpiderCrab. The robot will have pseudo-human characteristics including precoil and recoil in gesture, learning, aesthetic choice, redundant movement, mood and physical temperament. Two developmental processes will be realised: (1) a virtual realisation of SpiderCrab, (2) a concrete realisation of one prototype limb. Both realisations will be confined to the visual sensorium, although this will be processed in terms of both gestalt and proxemic data. While SpiderCrab will be fully realised beyond the present prototyping project, the robot itself will constitute an objectile, setting continued evolutionary challenges to software design, robot engineering, performance specialists and human agents.
more info on their website.
November 6, 2007
While at DUX, one of the presentations so far is something that is relevant to this class. Einar Sneve Martinussen presented a project that gives control of media displayed on television to children. Inside the box is an RFID reader, and he implanted his daughters toys with RFID tags.
Based on what she places in the bowl, different media files and different media types are triggered and played on the screen. It gives control of the media to the child and allows for a more natural interaction instead of having it dictated by people who arrange programs on television. He used regular media as well as family videos and photos. In one iteration, using a mortar to stir the bowl triggered random photos to appear.
I think it’s interesting how the form of objects can cater to the audience of people, and you can use familiar objects to interact with pieces of media or other furniture. Check out his blog for more.