Monday, March 27, 2017

final project | further research

Monday 3/27: PARTS ARE IN!!!

//currently reading...//

Revised code to try:

to do:

  • play with code
  • get pulse sensor ready for use (hot glue gun and sticker)
  • search for materials to make collar

natural born cyborgs | notes

Intro to Chapter 3
  • MIT—Sensetables, and interface that reacts to real world objects; Tangible User Interfaces (TUIs)—removing the space between input and storage (pen and paper, keyboard and hard drive)
  • Yo-Yo Ma—using a bow interface to create new musical sounds on a cello; just another means to creating his art, it brings more life to creating digital music BECAUSE of the better interface than just some buttons
  • “The goal of Augmented Reality is to add digital information to the everyday scene” – different than VR; merging on physical and informational realms; ie: seeing arrows in your vision to help you navigate
  • Blurring of digital and physical—children’s game where real world actions affected digital actions and vice versa (mixed reality play)
  • Tangible vs invisible—objects that are tangible become invisible because they are so innate and intertwined in everyday functions
  • “The combination of dynamic appliances and transparent technologies is surely a match made in cyborg heaven”—design and redesign over time, adapting to culture and individuals; our brain is constantly learning and relearning, why shouldn’t our technology be doing the same (ie: speech to text learning a user) REPITITION REPITITION REPITITION
  • “In all these cases (and you can probably now dream up many more), we discover that the body-image supported by a biological brain is quite plastic, and highly (and rapidly) responsive to coordinated signals from the environment”—optical illusions but cooler, “feeling” sensations from objects that are not a part of you!; our bodily perception is basically just a construct that we can mold
  • We were made this was on purpose because our bodies do change over time; work with phantom limb patients and creating a VR experience helped them to relieve pain in these nonexistent limbs; perceived correlations—how we are able to trick out minds because if we see and feel something at the same time our mind attempts to connect them
  • Body image can be changed to include nonbiological parts (like a cane or tennis racket…or new technology); ie: monkey began using a rake as if it was just an extension of its body

Monday, March 6, 2017

final project | research & ideas


-**LEDs lights**
-Idea 1: blinking speed, brightness, color shade dependent on sound, temperature, or room brightness 
-Idea 2: dependent on heart heart beat for LED light flash rhythm and color is on a continuous set pattern
-Idea 3: Maybe pick a particular song and use shades of color that reflect the tone (mood) or pitch of the music, speed that goes with bass or tempo, Color Range: soft, pastels (slow, soft beats) to bright, saturated colors (fast tempos)


**Final idea: a collar piece made of either wire or fabric
This would use a Neopixel ring and five Neopixel LEDs that change rhythm based on heart beat (Amped pulse sensor), while also repeating a set color pattern. 

{Previous idea}
-Clear acrylic globe with lights shooting out (dependent on how the lasers or LEDs work)
-Hold the globe in front of you or between people or in a circle of people

Potential Products/References:

-Ambient light sensor:
-Pulse sensor:
-Wearable platform:
-Bluetooth integration:
> ****


Adafruit (3/21)
Pulse Sensor Amped
Neopixel Ring
Neopixel RGB LEDs


Videos: (the prisms look cool) Um whoa

TL;DR: I plan to create a collar piece that is made of either fabric or wire and uses NeoPixel ring and RGB LEDs dependent upon a pulse sensor's reading.

instructables | the good, the bad, & the ugly

-lots of pics and details
-good amount of steps without over-explaining or under-explaining

-honestly, not horrible but the images were of poor quality
-could be better by either digital rendering the math or by using better handwriting and lighting
-step three could be broken up some

-only two steps after the intro
-could have gone into much more detail
-instead of explaining, just told us to Google it
-decent amount of pics but not ideal quality (background is distracting)

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

week of february 27th

critique on Monday
wednesday - learned more about Arduino coding :D

Monday, February 27, 2017

project 2 | noise

read & respond | Hertzian Tales Ch. 2

Becoming apart of an integrated circuit

Sociopolitical environments:
  1. Capitalist democracy
  2. Comunism

Subtle enslavement of human beings to their devices:
-mental consumption
-lack of variability in design

Conceptual model of technology:
-increases efficiency
-supports workplace
-not human-centered
Transition from our design origins of electronic objects (the military)

DARPA-collegiate military funded research

Human factors
-Participation, competition
-Our behaviour is sculpted by the hegemony

Hegemony-dominant thought
-have to be apart of the hegemony to affect it

Zanuso and Sapper - 1969 - TV for Brion Vega ~ black, shiny cube; all the interface disappears into the cube; black monolith; object of art
Art movements happening at this time - minimalism, pop art, surrealism
The Atom
Very slick designs (ie: The Jetsons)

Semiotics, semantics
Fan Heater - 1981 - Scheuer - Fibonacci sequence

Metaphorical definitions:
Opaque: black, mystery box; undefinable
-no semiotics, instructions
-can’t operate the interface without noticing
-good for dangerous things, methodical

Biology is redundant - Stelarc
Satori TV

Adelbretch - globe shaped robot that follows you around
Pet or alien?
Reacted to touch with speech

User unfriendliness does not mean user hostility

ICE - interrogation and customs enforcement
Interrogation robot
Look up: Psycho-Pass anime

Anthony Dunne
Critical or speculative design - theorycrafting, tries to project what will be designed years from now using a critical eye
Technological Dream Series No. 1: Robots

Intimate posture (like holding a baby) to use Sentinel

week of february 6th

Monday: discussed more about how our noise project will interact, the design

Wednesday: group project critiques

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Monday, February 6, 2017

project 1 | integrate, interact, intervene



{To see more about our project, click the links above!}

For our group project into the world of simple circuits and their interaction with the public, we decided to get a little adventurous. After perusing the interwebs for inspiration, we ended up ordering a kit online for a 9V Siren. Not quite knowing how we would eventually have this interact with the public, we carried on. Our kit arrived quickly, and once we took it out and began to look at it, I think we realized we may have been a little ambitious. 

Following proper procedure, we attempted to identify all the pieces, and then planned to breadboard our circuit initially. But, this was going to be a complex and time-consuming task, and Thomas gave us the go-ahead to skip breadboarding. We had misidentified some pieces previously, resolved this error and replaced a missing piece with one from the FABLAB. After that our only difficulty was making sure everything was placed in the board with the proper polarity. Allie was most skilled with the soldering iron, and we quickly got the circuit together.

Instructions for our kit

The image we would have used to breadboard our circuit.

Our touch point (and back of the circuit--nice Hersey's kiss soldering)

Our kit's speaker

More soldering to connect the speaker to the board

We immediately needed to see this bad boy in action. It was definitely working and was much louder than we expected!

So, skip a few days later, and we're getting our circuit together and putting it in its packaging. During our interlude we had been working diligently on our noise project, which inspired us to use circuit bending in this project as well! With Thomas' assistance we modified our circuit to include a potentiometer, which allows us to adjust the volume of the speaker. We also played around with touch and how the sound would change depending on if someone's hand was touching the board and/or attaching to jumper cables to the board.

The potentiometer we added

This new idea of including circuit bending finally allowed us to see the full potential of our project--why not introduce circuit bending to the world! We used a shoe box, electrical tape, duct tape, an exacto knife, and handy-dandy Illustrator to create a DJ Booth.

Circuit Bending DJ Booth

Inside the box!

The on button (red) and poteniometer (black)

Our next step was to get our DJ Booth out in the real world! We took it outside and had multiple passersby come over and want to see what all the fuss was about. The reactions were pretty humorous; one girl thought that Eugene was controlling the noises with his phone. We also took our project home, and I had one of my roommates react to it. She just thought it was making funny fart-like noises. Allie also took the device to her work.

Overall, I was surprised by how much people liked what we had come up with. I think its success with the common public was likely from the personalization that came from each person. Everyone tried different methods of controlling the sound; it was literally in their hands how the simple circuit would react. It was fun to just see this person-to-person change. .

Our circuit bent siren in action

Sunday, February 5, 2017

read & respond | Hertzian Tales: Ch. 1

When reading this article, my mind was immediately drawn to smartphones. There is so much technology in this small device and its casing is quite simple. Any changes to it are minute and the public has large reactions to even these. The smartphone has lost all art in my opinion--it is just meant to be aesthetically appealing--there is nothing that pushes boundaries. The device is just as the article says--a way to use and understand the "incomprehensible technologies" (20).

Smartphones are all in the same shape and very similar is style. They have essentially become icons because of how recognizable they are. The design choices, as I said before, are minimal and sleek. Which, works in our consumer market, but to take these devices to their full potential, should we experiment with more unique and interesting ideas? Can you image someone walking around with a circular smartphone? It would be weird, but it could catch on and become the new normal.

Radio in a Bag by Daniel Weil is a questioning of our modern packaging. We buy all of the electronics and use them everyday, but rarely do we know what is happening on the inside. Most of our phones are difficult to open, so we never see the inside. It's a curious thing that has been taken for granted because of its deep integration in our lives. Just taking this class is opening my eyes to how much of my world is run by technology and how everything is technology and art--at the same time.

I feel that at some point, the commercial industry stole technology from art. Devices were designed in a logical, efficient manner; not that this is bad or wrong, just it has become the precedence for all electronics. When, in actuality, this false divide between art and electronics needs to be taken down. Artists need to come in a start pushing boundaries and taking risks in product design. We shouldn't be playing it safe--we need to make movements and questioning and staying curious. Technology needs to come back into the art realm, and technological art needs to be created just for art's sake. On that same note, there does need to keep a balance of the functionality and art aestheticism, at least for consumer products.

If you look in the past at cameras, you see varying designs and unique choices. The product has functionality but also looked nice. You could differentiate one camera type from another. Now you can hardly tell the difference between an iPhone and Samsung Galaxy until you see the OS.

Overall, design is often looked over by consumers of technology, and designers keep it on the simple side. I think we need to expand more in dynamic design of our electronics.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

week of january 30th

This week we got knee deep in circuit bending. I'll admit I'm still in over my head with all this circuitry but I'm trying to figure it out. I was actually able to get my initial circuit breadboarded pretty quickly thanks to the handy-dandy Fritzing image that Thomas provided us with. From then on I tried changing capacitors and resistors and their placements to create weird wacky noises. I found that I got the best response from having two 10K resistors, and 330uF, 220uF and 1uF capacitors. Even with this, I had to touch one touch point and then add an additional touch point at the same time.

I'm not sure how I want to integrate this into an object yet... we'll see next week.

Also this week my group and I soldered our circuit for a siren. You can see more on this in the project 1 blog post.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

read & respond | The Art of Noise

How music is evolving and created, related to technology and industrialization and civilization

Dadaism and futurism

Framed by discussing historical precedence
exploration of sound,
ancient form,
Mathematical - theory to describe the natural world
-fibonacci sequence in nature (leaves, branches)
-golden ratio 1:1.618 (faces, “squares”), pleasing to look at
Ratio - proportions (rationality) ---> laws
IDEALS - classical Grecian sculptures
Scales in music

Infinite combination of sounds (THINK: all the muscle movements in the face)

1913 Russolo - mechanisms are growing more popular (cars, manufacturing, mass crops, factorization) - Western Europe, USA

Scales are not necessarily relevant because they were questioning authority (ie: church)
If you have authority you are the author
Hegemony - accepted rules that run the world
You can’t escape the reality/hegemony so you create an alternate reality around it
Ethos - ethics
Russolo is coming out of WWI (gassing of humans in trenches)
Social Contract

Embrace reality - throw away/ignore musical scales, authorship, narrow view music vs the openness of the world. Music became idealized -- lost its connection to natural sounds

“The world is your instrument”

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

week of january 23rd

After the trials of breadboarding this blinky LED circuit, this week we soldered! I got to use my iron for the first time, so that was exciting. Soldering this was SO much easier than using the breadboard. My brain just does not automatically think in the same way a breadboard is diagrammed. The soldering diagram just makes so much more sense. I definitely need a lot more hours using the soldering iron to figure out the perfect amount of time and heat needed for a perfect Hersey's kiss, but I think these look pretty good. 

Sunday, January 22, 2017

project 0 | upgrade proposal

This new fingertip scanner is a multi-functional device built for modern life.

Artists can use the colour scanner for finding the perfect color for their digital projects. This scanner is able to better recognize colours than the human eye. It is also amazing for color blind people to be able to use accurate colors in projects.
Text (even handwritten) can be scanned line by line into your word processor.
Materials can be roughly recognized (this feature is in the preliminary stages of development) to be used in programs like SketchUp when 3D modeling.

The fingertip scanner connects to Bluetooth, so your scan results are available on all of your devices.

I was inspired by videos I've seen online of a pen that can pick up colors and a video of a portable scanner. I wanted to create a device that could have multiple functions and be more compact. 

Friday, January 20, 2017

week of january 16th

This week we pro-typed on breadboards. Admittedly, this task was difficult and nearly took me two hours to complete.  But once completed I was quite proud that it was finally working!

We were told to not use the instructions that came with the kit and instead had to refer to the two diagrams we were given. This was definitely a learning curve to understand how to properly read the diagram and how to relate it to how the breadboard would look like in the physical world.

But after a lot of trial and error, help from Thomas, and collaborating with classmates, my breadboard finally worked! I am honestly not sure if I could replicate this again, but I feel that I have a better understanding of how to read circuit diagrams, just not how to implement them in the physical world. Creating circuits is definitely a time-consuming and detailed process.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

read & respond | Electric Body Manipulation as Performance Art: A Historical Perspective

Though not necessarily written about in this article, this topic definitely fights the line between scientific experimentation and artistic expression. While usually the science and art communities are believed to be very far apart, electricity's use in performance art is bringing these two circles together. In the beginning of this article, the process of scientists making electric discoveries is discussed. Once this groundwork is set, artists (who may have not even thought of themselves as artists in their time) come in and create modern spectacles.

In performances such as Stephen Gray's, science became entertainment, though mostly for the elite members of society. Blurring the lines and boxes we have created as a society, art, science, and entertainment are all intertwined. New scientific discoveries were exhibited in intriguing ways, in order to spread knowledge of complex ideas. While members of society in the 1700s were likely familiar with Art, science was probably a fuzzier area, and likely caused fear, especially with some of the dangerous effects of large amounts of electrical current. But, when scientists/artists displayed their discoveries in artistic ways, audience members were more likely to be intrigued.

But while there are interesting performances that came from the use of electrical current in humans, there is the darker side--electrical execution. Though definitely not art, during the course of discovering a new artistic medium, there was the discovery that electrical currents can kill humans. The fact that brilliant art performances have come from something so dangerous is amazing.

There is still the argument that electrical performance art, such as Arthur Elsenaar and Remko Scha's work, is not art. Because of the wall in our minds between science and art, it becomes difficult to classify what their work is. Even though they call it performance art, because it is artificially orchestrated, is it really art? It is not purposefully thought out to have a specific set of actions but is random. Is art required to a purpose? Just because their work does not exactly have a story line, it does have the purpose to explore facial expressions.

Also, there is the argument that it cannot be art simply because it uses technology. Technology is involved in all forms of traditional art, though. Oil paints have become perfected over time, the potter's wheel is electrical, and in modern times, digital artists use computer programs. All artistic mediums use technology, though maybe not technology as we typically think of it. Personally, I believe that their work is both art and science. Even though this goes against the desire for us to classify everything, sometimes we must accept that there are grey areas. Elsenaar and Scha simply go about their experiments in an artistic way.

lab | led throwies

Using this Instructable, we made LED throwies, as originally created by the Graffiti Research Lab.

The LEDs were made using an LED, a battery, a magnet, and electrical tape.

These small machines are simple to create, but have so much potential. They reinforce the idea that art doesn't necessarily have to be complex in order to be interesting and shareable.

notes on electricity

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

week of january 9th

We were introduced to the basics of electricity, components of circuit boards, and discussed Art.

The biggest take-away is RESISTANCE, VOLTAGE, and CURRENT.
Current is measured in amperes (amps) and signified as I.
Resistance is measured in Ohm's (omega symbol) and is signified by R.
Voltage is measured in volts (V) and is signified by V.

I / R * V

These three components are interconnected and depend and change with one another. 

Also, LEDs or light emitting diodes are polar, or a one direction valve for electricity. They also always require a resistor (unless it is a very small voltage). 

The data sheet is very important, as well as being able to read schematics. Always refer back to the data sheet if you are unsure of something. 

Art as a canon is being challenged in our time by the social, democratic nature of our society. With sites like Instructables, "trade secrets" are shared, and art becomes something for everyone.