Introduction to Physical Computing
05 Nov 2018
For my final pcomp project I am bouncing two ideas that I would like to build.
My first idea is to create a physical component for a project I proposed in my socially engaged art and digital practice class. I worked with a class mate to propose an installation which creates an environment and platform for collaborative drawing. There would be a tactile device to draw on and we imagine using different inputs such as voice or sound.
The idea is that a person can draw a line that connects two points and the line will be saved to a database. The individual line will be added to a continuous line that connects all the previous lines and will be projected to the walls and ceilings of a tent to create an environment. Something like a planetarium.
We will complete the environment by using data from the lines to generate harmonies.
When we presented the project with a digital demo and we got good feedback and were surprised with how the tight constraints allowed for people to create unusual expressions. The constellation quality of the drawings is why we imagine projecting the drawings on the ceilings and roof and I think that creating a physical and audio component can complete the immersive environment.
Here is an image of the screen where people draw a line.
Here is when we first tested joining the lines.
Here are later images after people experimented and pushed what they could do within the constraints. They got quite intricate.
Here is an image of a tactile drawing surface which I am influenced by. Partially for accessibility, but also because of the physicality of the medium. I am also toying with the idea of creating many modes of inputs for line making.
An etch a sketch with pots is an easy possibility.
The second idea I am considering is creating geodesic structures that respond to touch. I’ve been greatly influenced by buckminster fuller and I imagine creating a “Buckyball” i.e. truncated icosahedron or buckminsterfullerene with embedded lights. When touching each surface of the polygon (which there are 32) the side will light. I imagine it being self enclosed and handheld with a speaker since audio is a wonderful component.
Here are some buckyballs I made in fabrication.
Kind of what I’m imagining but each side lights up differently and in a geodesic shape. Alternative to embedded lights I am considering using projection mapping and creating a control panel or interface to control the lights.