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CMU Electronic Media Studio II, Fall 2011, Section D » Looking Outwards

Looking outward 2

Looking Outwards — JOEL.SIMON @ 6:01 am

1: Bubble Clock


In this sketch by Son Wooseong, there are three partitions representing seconds, minutes and hours. Every second another black ball falls into the second partition and on every tenth second a white ball. On the minute the seconds are cleared and a ball falls into the minutes jar and the minute balls explode. The same process occurs for minutes and hours. The result is very aesthetically pleasing abstract clock that could stand on its on as an art piece. The bouncing also makes it rather fun to watch. The clock suceeds greatly in displaying a good feel for the time at a glance as it is very clear roughly how far into the hour or minute it is. However, knowing the exact minute or second is pretty much impossible consider the movement of all the balls. I think an improvement could be made by instead of having every tenth ball be white, have every ten balls morph together to form one, much larger ball. This will preserve the concept of the clock and make it easier to count the number of minutes or seconds.


2: Congreve clock


The Congreve clock combines the functionality of pendulum/sprign clocks with the kinetics and visuals of a rolling ball clock. a Congreve cock uses a ball rolling down a ramp as a measurement of a period which hits a switch at the bottom of every cycle. The decorations and detail of the clock made it extremely beautiful and slightly hypnotic to watch. There is something extremely gratifying about the physics of the classical machinery behind clocks.



3: Simply titled “The Coolest Clock Ever” this clock is  certainly a contender.  At first sight it appears to be a clear screen with a man behind it drawing a clock face onto the glass. Then, as soon as he finishes carefully drawing the minute hand it is time to erase it and draw a new one. His attention to detail and occasional mistakes makes the video extremely convincing and compulsive to watch. The size of the clock itself is massive, enough that a full figure would easily be able to fit inside, further adding to the illusion. Adding a face to the concept of time makes it a surprisingly powerful piece as his apparent infinite work ahead of him gives more weight to the feeling of time.















Looking Outwards #2

Looking Outwards — NATHAN.TREVINO @ 2:42 am


Conrad Shawcross is really making waves with this amazing exhibition. It pushed the boundaries between art and information, and what can be seen as data and follows a tried and tested form, shape and, most importantly, ideas as art. In the work Skein Cone, the ropes hold delicately and firmly a suspended metal sculpture. The intricacy of the work is mind blowing along with the concept of translation from information to form and shape. I’ve see many artists use information systems to create a visual representation that is beautiful in shape and creativity and Skein Cone joins the ranks. Another part that caught my attention was Perimeter Studies. It is very hard to describe so just go the link up top and you’ll understand how beautiful mathematics can be in the hands of Shawcross.

SOAK from everyware.kr on Vimeo.

Mind blown… “Soak, Dye in light.” by Everyware is absolutely the most interesting thing I have seen that utilizes Kinect and Processing. Everyware focuses on fabric dying, something so organic and fundamental to human kind for thousands of years, for the interactive installation. It uses Kinect (Microsoft Motion Camera) and Processing to devise an extremely organic “touch and react” experience. The color, dynamics, and physics of the virtual dye are remarkable. The video most definitely inspired me to look farther into interactive artworks of my own.

Broken Houses by Ofra Lapid is an extremely clever redefining of 3D and 2D. She uses digital photographs found on the web to create very small replicas of the actual decaying and breaking down houses. She is able to very accurately recreate the feeling, look, and exact dimensions of 3D textures with precise application of the high rendered photos onto the flat mini-house surface. Look closely at them and the viewer can see the outlying form of the house is just covered with the picture. A very nice concept into fooling the eyes and mind.

Looking Outwards 2

Looking Outwards — HANK.EHRENFRIED @ 2:06 am

Luca Sassone’s Schizzo 2 is incredible. This program is pretty simple: it draws a random city scape. Even though its only interactivity is a mouse click to redraw, it’s still amazing. The lines that draw the buildings are programmed to be slightly skewed so that it looks like a genuine hand drawn architectural drawing. Sassone’s program also draws the city right as soon as the program gets up and running. The possibilities are endless which is why I sat and stared at it for ten minutes clicking over and over again. Despite giving the user little to no control, this program kept me interested for quite a while.


Design I/O’s (Emily Gobeille and Theo Watson) Night Bright is a highly interactive installation that is currently on display and running at the Bumble children’s cafe is Los Altos, CA. It uses xbox kinect technology to detect where a body is. When you move in front of the screen, the piece will see your movement and light up parts of the projection behind you. When it gets lit up various creatures that come out at night and plant life are exposed by lightning bugs and glowing moths that light up when you pass over them. I want to go find it and try and light up the whole projection at once. The video that they have posted shows children and some adults lighting up various parts of the projection.


Claudio Gonzales’s Galactic Dust is another program that I could sit and stare at for hours. This program aims to mimic the night sky when the program is still and not active. Once you hold down your mouse and start switching the commands by hitting your space and enter key is suddenly becomes very reminiscent of traveling at light speed but even better because it doesn’t ever have to stop. Depending on where you move your mouse, the fluorescent space dust with rotate around your mouse and the pattern and path it follows will change depending on how and where you move your mouse. Once you let go of the mouse, the space dust settles into place and slowly transitions from one bright color to next against a subtle night sky.


Looking Outward

Assignment 5 due 10/5,Looking Outwards — HENRY.ARMERO @ 5:24 am

Guy Marsden’s  Digital Numeric Relevators

Mr. Marsden has created a whole bunch of little electronic widgets (over a long period of time) that produce meaningless numbers in interesting ways. To me, they are the quintessential electronic scavenger artworks. Marsden would go to electronics supply stores and use whatever interesting display technologies he could find to produce his things. Having looked at a a catalog for such a store, I can tell you that it is a magical experience, peering through pages after pages of weird solenoids, buzzers, and 7-segment display displays. In fact, this has inspired me to go look again, and now that I know a bit more about electronics, maybe make something interesting. Like a big agglomeration of assorted electronic parts in some big nonsense machine. That’d be pretty awesome. I’ll keep you informed.


Weather Harp

This video is of an outdoor wind-played musical instrument found in Sugden Place, Melbourne. It is a really curious contraption, because it kind of sits in a back alley and in the wind plays this music that evokes such strange emotions! For example, I cannot listen to it without thinking of some kind of Myst-style weird-village exploration thing going on. Also, the motions it makes as it plays are pretty interesting and dramatic. One day I would quite like to make something like this. Something that sits and makes an aura for a location, without anyone needing to take care of it.


Music and Light

So this video is about an installation/performance where a saxophonist plays some lovely sounds while standing in front of a projector and a camera. Then some computer program takes his picture and does exciting things with it. The sound too. So at the beginning it shows him echoing away into infinity via a video feedback loop. Then there’s some crazy gallery visual that’s hard to visually parse because of the low quality video, but best of all is the imagery towards the end! The sounds of his beautiful sax lullabies are transformed into dots, lines, and rectangles via some function of their pitch, volume, and time. And it is a pretty darn good visualization of the sound. There are long drawn out lines when he holds a note and big flurries of shapes when there are lots of notes at once! In conclusion, his saxophonery could be a performance on its own, obviously. But this display takes it and makes it part of something else – something big and grand that should impress all who watch.


Looking Outward 2

Looking Outwards — CHRISTINA.CONWAY @ 10:48 am



This is a program designed similarly to google maps. It allows you to find
out where and when you can catch public transportation in a city. Where it
differs is that it figures out how far one can travel in a given amount of
time. This program could be really useful for someone trying to travel to
another state by way of public transportation so that they are not
focusing a lot of energy on sifting through websites and bus schedules.
This was posted in July, but even before then there was a similar program
on droid phones. This program gains its attention because it is available
online to all people.

Audio Flowers


Audio Flowers is a project done by Last.fm. They measure changes in
rhythm, harmony, and timbre in a piece of music. The data turns into red,
green, and blue petals. This program was created to help people visualize
complicated musical works. I think it can be very helpful and interesting
to visually-based people to not only hear music, but to see it as well.


Continuum is a design group that chose to create an interactive software
in which the user can use their mouse to draw a dress on a model form and
the program converts the drawing into a 3D shape. The dresses are always
broken up into 3d triangles. The group believes in moving forward with
technological advances and machine manufacturing to quickly make
products.. I found this project intriguing because if it were to catch on
and the future is filled with clothing stores then it would be a totally
sci-fi experience. Clothing stores of tomorrow could realistically be
filled with computers.

Looking Outwards the Second

Looking Outwards — JOLYN.SANDFORD @ 7:46 pm

Scramble Suit

Though I wasn’t able to experience this program firsthand, it seems wicked clever!  Scramble Suit is actually an on-going sort of project that people are continuing to update.  On a basic level, Scramble Suit is a face-mapping-and-replacing program, based on FaceOSC, FaceTracker, and named after a fictional piece of technology from a book.  Using a combination of these applications, the user is able to map out their face and attach certain parameters to sound or even other faces! In the second video (and in the later half of the first) on the page, you can see how the user changes his face and switches his out for a multitude of people! It’s really quite fascinating and I can see all sorts of uses for cinema or other interfaces (pun!).

Night Bright

This is a project I think we’re meant to think about in this course – it’s fairly interactive and uses some technology that some of us might want to learn to use in the future, namely the XBox Kinect.  It’s innovative of the project designers to use already existing technology and adapt it for their own use. Night Bright is a piece where a scene is projected onto the screen and people can interact with it. I’m a sucker for the play of light and sound within an environment, so I really like the idea of this.  Being able to grow plants and set fireflies free really appeals to my childhood sensibilities, and I really like the idea of having sound be a factor in how the children get to interact with the scenery. I’d like to see to what degree everything is done and maybe interact with it myself.

Sword and Sworcery EP

Unfortunately, I don’t have an iPad, otherwise I would be all over this game and never get any homework done again.  Sword and Sworcery EP is an iPad-based game/musical experience that uses the touchpad technology and lunar cycles to determine what can be played and heard. Its art style is based off old 8-bit games and it bills itself as a “21st century interpretation of the archetypical old school videogame adventure” which to me seems very exciting. The art itself is stunning and the soundtrack is amazing. It’s deceptively simple and I can’t imagine how much work must have gone into it!

Looking Outward 2-3

Looking Outwards — SAMANTHA.OLESON @ 6:33 pm

Project_1 by Candice Clark allows the user to determine where partial circles will be placed on the screen.  The circles are opaque and the more circles that build up in a certain area, the darker the shade becomes.  You control where the circles are placed by holding down your mouse and moving it around the screen.  The project itself is very simple but I was initially drawn to the project by the color choice of the artist.  As I experimented with the piece I grew fonder of the results of the simple actions and the resulting partial circles because the layout of the circles and the randomization of the size of the circle reminded me of peeling potatoes.  Like watching the potato peels falling in the trash as you peel, this project is soothing and the repetition of the movements was hypnotizing.  I love to peel potatoes so I like this piece a lot.

To get the potato peelin’ feelin,’ go here.

Looking Outwards 2-2

Looking Outwards — SAMANTHA.OLESON @ 6:04 pm

Peter Lager’s Knot in 3D allows the viewer to control the positioning of this know shape in space.  As the user, you can rotate the knot, allowing you to move around the shape and view it in any position you desire.  As you manipulate the position of the know a little yellow/orange disk moves along the lines of the shape.  When it reaches the end of the shape it goes back in the other direction towards the other end of the shape and it repeats its journey for the duration of your interaction.  I don’t know what the purpose of the yellow disk is but perhaps it is used as an orientation tool for the user so as the shape is flipped and turned you do not get confused as to your orientation.  Besides the possibility of the disk being used as an orientation tool I do not see any other purpose for the object.  I find the project interesting and impressive that the user was able to make this type of interaction, however, I am less impressed by the lack of interaction beyond moving the objects position.  I wish that in changing the orientation of the object you perhaps interrupt the path of the disk on the shape, slowing it down, speeding it up or changing its direction completely based on the position that the viewer chooses for the knot.


To experience this project firsthand, go here.



Looking Outwards 2-1

Looking Outwards — SAMANTHA.OLESON @ 5:51 pm


In gum’s Cursor Thief, viewers get to interact with a little animated bug that steals your cursor if you leave it in the same place on the screen to long or if the cursor gets too close to the bug.  The Bug also has extending arms so even if you leave your cursor at the top of the interactive plain the bug can still steal your cursor by reaching its arms up.  The bug is actually quite endearing because its interactions with the cursor seem to be based on its desire for connection and love of the cursor because when it is able to capture the cursor a little heart appears and it quickly runs off to stash the cursor offscreen.  Visually, the project is very simple but the interaction with the animation is complex.  Computers and technology are often impersonal and unemotional but I really appreciate how gum was able to create this connection between the user and the little thief.  Despite its annoying habit of stealing your cursor every chance that it gets, you cannot help but appreciate the bugs determination.

To experience this super cute thief, go here.






Looking Outward 01

Looking Outwards — AeonX @ 4:23 pm

01)  In Brigitta Zics’ Mirror SPACE (2005), visitors are scanned and their infrared data then informs the visual representation of their virtual mirror image. Additional data informing the virtual mirror object is collected from a live stream of images and information from the internet “that is typical for a given moment.” While I enjoy interactive art that allows you to alter the direction/flow of projected objects by “lifting” or “pushing” them for example, there is a disconnect for me in that I am not in the virtual environment, only altering it outside with my human form. With Mirror SPACE, your data is the environment. I like the idea that mood analysis is partially what the artist is striving for in this piece. Having not experienced it in person, I cannot tell how effective it is in achieving this goal. It would be interesting to visit the work several times with another person, with each person in different emotional states to see how similar your virtual image is from the time before, and how it might be altered based on what you are feeling at the moment. For example, if your virtual mirror image looks completely different than the last time you visited, it would take away from the credibility of the piece… I would expect/hope that the image would be identifiable as “me” with only slight alterations. When you enter the piece with other people, the mirror image mapped for you is the one that follows you around the room, increasing the effectiveness of the piece. Since the virtual object representations look like sea creatures from outer space, constantly moving and subtly changing, there is a reason to linger and visually explore your image creature, and how your representation interacts with that of other visitors.

02)  Video mapping in the extreme, Amon Tobin’s live tour (2011) elevates the concert experience with its interactive stage. The connection between performer and audience – and the audience being able to witness what the performer is doing in an expanded way –  is really what a live concert is about. For those reasons, I believe this is an excellent use of the mapping technology. It might be extremely beneficial for our class to take a November Netherlands field trip to experience this in person. No? While there, we could also be video mapped for Aphex Twin’s live performance. Just a suggestion…     😉

(Most of you have probably already seen this, but I can’t mention video mapping without a nod to the Prague Astronomical Clock 600 Year Anniversary. I realize this isn’t interactive in the sense of audience interaction, but it is certainly interactive with its environment… Which is of course inherent to video mapping.)

03)  Studio Roosegaarde’s Intimacy Dress is enticing for what it appears to be right now, but even more for what it aspires to be (and may be capable of evolving into). The dress already has the technology to clear or obscure based on proximity. According to Studio Roosegaarde, “social interactions determine the garments’ level of transparency, creating a sensual play of disclosure.” Does this mean the dress may be able to sense the wearer’s emotions? Or others’ intentions? If the dress could in fact (eventually be able to) sense your emotions and react in accordance, would you want it to? Would you trust what you were feeling at any given moment to visibly determine the transparency level of your clothing? Hmmm…

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