Category: Assignment-01B

Variable Resistors (Circuits 08 & 13)


  Analog Input
 Demonstrates analog input by reading an analog sensor on analog pin 0 and
 turning on and off a light emitting diode(LED)  connected to digital pin 13. 
 The amount of time the LED will be on and off depends on
 the value obtained by analogRead(). 
 The circuit:
 * Potentiometer attached to analog input 0
 * center pin of the potentiometer to the analog pin
 * one side pin (either one) to ground
 * the other side pin to +5V
 * LED anode (long leg) attached to digital output 13
 * LED cathode (short leg) attached to ground
 * Note: because most Arduinos have a built-in LED attached 
 to pin 13 on the board, the LED is optional.
 Created by David Cuartielles
 modified 30 Aug 2011
 By Tom Igoe
 This example code is in the public domain.
int sensorPin = A0;    // select the input pin for the potentiometer
int ledPin = 13;      // select the pin for the LED
int sensorValue = 0;  // variable to store the value coming from the sensor
void setup() {
  // declare the ledPin as an OUTPUT:
  pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);  
void loop() {
  // read the value from the sensor:
  sensorValue = analogRead(sensorPin);    
  // turn the ledPin on
  digitalWrite(ledPin, HIGH);  
  // stop the program for <sensorvalue> milliseconds:
  // turn the ledPin off:        
  digitalWrite(ledPin, LOW);   
  // stop the program for for </sensorvalue><sensorvalue> milliseconds:

Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 7.34.17 PM


 * Force Sensitive Resistor Test Code
 * The intensity of the LED will vary with the amount of pressure on the sensor
int sensePin = 2;    // the pin the FSR is attached to
int ledPin = 9;      // the pin the LED is attached to (use one capable of PWM)
void setup() {
  pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);  // declare the ledPin as an OUTPUT
void loop() {
  int value = analogRead(sensePin) / 4; //the voltage on the pin divded by 4 (to scale from 10 bits (0-1024) to 8 (0-255)
  analogWrite(ledPin, value);        //sets the LEDs intensity proportional to the pressure on the sensor
  Serial.println(value);              //print the value to the debug window

Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 7.39.57 PM

Inspiring Technological Art: “Simple Harmonic Motion” and “Reducible Complexity”

“Simple Harmonic Motion”, named after the relatively simple physics of periodic motion discussed in most introductory physics courses, is a research project/series of artworks created by Memo Akten. The project consists of several videos, each one exploring a different way of presenting the strange geometric effects that are created when a group of objects adjacent to each other oscillate at slightly different frequencies. For example, in the video embedded above, the speed at which the beads rise and fall depends on their position in the ring (beads farther back oscillate slower than those at the front). From this basic rule, incredible visual and musical complexity arises.

Similarly, “Reducible Complexity” also by Memo Akten, experiments with the same ideas as “Simple Harmonic Motion”. In “Reducible Complexity”, a intricate and beautiful system arises from a set of simple geometric rules. The patterns that emerge are visually similar to a eye, a hurricane, clockwork – all systems with incredible complexity.

These two works have been a huge source of inspiration for my own work because of the way that they can explore these huge ideas by taking advantage of one of the strengths that computers have as an expressive medium: the ability to take a few rules and iterate them repeatedly.

Both projects were created completely with code. Most of the Simple Harmonic Motion videos were created with OpenFrameworks, and Reducible Complexity (the real time in-browser version) was made with Javascript using WebGL.

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Gaming and Art

I’d be bluffing if I said I knew a lot about art with a capital ‘A’. I’d be lying if I said I knew anything about Art and technology and how those two very different mediums coexist. To be honest, prior to last year, I wasn’t quite sure how computers and technology could even work in tandem to create art. However, whenever I think of a medium in which art and technology seem to meet, I think of video games. Socially, I don’t think most people consider video games an art form and I would agree with that concept but only in the slightest of sense to say that not everything is an art form. I think it takes a certain amount of creativity and thought for anything, be it a painting, a sculpture, a book or a video game, to be considered art.

A few years ago, I stumbled upon a game that really opened my eyes to the concept of video games being an art form, and that game was the Unfinished Swan. I’ve never played the game, which, I suppose may take away from my credibility when it comes to discussing it—I don’t know—but for some reason, it holds a special place in my heart.

The game is about a little boy, chasing a mystical swan that leads him to an unfinished kingdom, a kingdom where the player is essentially, the creator, throwing paint balls to reveal the world around them. This game just feels so magical. It’s so quiet and simple, which surprised me, especially considering the fact that I’ve always been, and am, a graphics girl when it comes to playing video games. It just has this ethereal quality about it that stirs something inside me that I can’t quite pinpoint. Maybe it’s a longing for childhood, or simplicity, whatever it is this game just makes me feel, something that is rare to find in any medium really, not just in video games.

How many people were involved in making it? How did they organize themselves to achieve it?

A Studio named Giant Sparrow created the game which, started off as a graduate student project led by Ian Dallas, a graduate student, and a team of four others from the University of Southern California. Ian created the demo and entered it to a contest, somewhere along the way the demo was posted on YouTube and Sony representatives picked it up. After that the game ended up being developed by a team of 12 people. Interestingly enough, when Dallas described his experience working with the creative tools, he talked about how though he understood how the tools worked, in reality he need to be fluent in them in order to bend—and no I don’t mean avatar style bending—but bend in the sense of making the tools do things they weren’t supposed to do. I think that notion really underlies how I consider art and technology working together. When you use computers to make art, work with the tools in ways that bend and twist them against how they were supposed to work.

What opportunities or futures does the project point, if any?

I don’t know if it points to any opportunities or futures. However, I think this game shows that as a medium, video games, and inherently, technology, should, could and can be considered as an art form.

Here, take a look at it for yourself.

Further Reading: How the Unfinished Swan Moved From a Student Project to a PSN Game

INForm Morphing Table by MIT Students

A few years ago I discovered this link that amazed me and inspired me to design things that think outside the box. This project, run by the Tangible Media Group in MIT (founded and led by Professor Hiroshi Ishii), is a table made up of hundreds of little square beams that move up and down at the command of a computer that is reading visual 3d information via a Kinect Sensor. Essentially it maps out a hand or basket or whatever you put under the Sensor, and recreates that shape in real time on the table’s beams by moving them into place. This way you can move objects, create shapes and much more. See the video to understand what I’m talking about and how awesome it really is.

I love the simplicity of the idea, how well it’s been implemented, and the potential for an even more accurate version by making the square beams smaller and smaller, possibly creating an infinitely accurate 3D scape/recreation. Sort of like pixels- it has a low resolution now but will only get better.

For full project information, credits, and more, check out their site here.


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Inspirational Art/Design: “Wooden Mirrors” by Daniel Rozin (1999)

The “Mirror” projects by Daniel Rozin first caught my eye upon going to the Children’s Museum in Pittsburgh for the first time. To see something as recognisable and personal to me as my reflection in such a rough form was incredible. Not being able to see any of the technology behind it, and seeing it interact so flawlessly with the crowd was even more interesting. While “Wooden Mirror” Was the version of the piece I saw, Rozin has created multiple different mechanical mirrors which range from actually reflective surfaces to simple gestural representations.

Rozin’s project has so many possibilities due to the fact that any type of material can be used for the surface of the mirror. Since the actual piece is made possible through computation and live gestures it can be ever-evolving without worry. On Daniel’s website, you can see many of his other “Mirror” works.

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Immersion of Ryogi Ikeda

The first week I arrived to CMU, I saw the Ryoji Ikea installation titled data.tron at Wood Street Galleries, which was an audiovisual installation where every pixel was calculated by mathematical principles. It was completely immersive, as these numbers were projected onto a large screen taking up half of the dark room. It was captivating, being able to view numbers as though they were bugs or bacteria, rapidly moving with this deafening sound to accompany. There was something purposeful in numbers which one could not relate to, and while previously seeing myself as someone who was not interested in numbers, The very fact that they were able to form feelings and sensation left me in awe.

Inspirational Technological Art

One computational project I knew before entering EMS 2 is a Darwinian approach to fractal art called Electric Sheep. The project was founded by Scott Draves, and was originally released in 1999 as free screensaver software. Currently, there are approximately 500,000 monthly electric sheep users.

Each fractal is referred to as a “sheep”, and the group of these fractals stored on the server is called the “flock”. When an electric sheep user’s computer screensaver is activated, one of the sheep is selected out of the 100 or so in the flock. This sheep is displayed as the screensaver for a short amount of time, during which the user has the option to up-vote or down-vote the sheep, depending on whether they like or dislike the fractal. The voting process is used to create new sheep for the flock with characteristics of the most popular fractals.

I find this project incredibly inspiring, because of its interactive component, as well as the aesthetic preference of the community that’s reflected in the newly generated sheep. I think one of my favorite aspects of this project is that they’ve given the viewer an active role in generating new sheep. I think Electric sheep is a great example of how user data can be utilized in the creation of new media art and animation.

Electric Sheep

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Technological Art That Inspired Me

Ian Clemmer developed his software, Superflow as a Bachelor Thesis in 2010. Superflow utilizes a system of pivot points and small unique position changes and rotational patterns to create an large range of shapes and movements.

Ian Clemmer uses his software to create visually stunning detail in the form of visual art choreographed with music. He’s made numerous videos showcasing the range in possibilities his software has.

What I find inspiring is that this program, though simple in concept, can create crazy complex visual images. The art is vivid in colors and stunning in acute details. Ian Clemmer, along with using superflow to create visual music art superflow is responsible for the commercial title sequences Clemmer has made for HBO.

Superflow is an awful name for this software though, all I think of is a new top rated maxipad commercial.


The software is described in this link (could be useful if you want to make some patterns and similar work)

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Technological Art/Design Inspiration_Epiphyte Chamber

Epiphyte Chamber

Epiphyte Chamber is an installation made by Philip Beesley an architect with help from engineers and designers in his team. This archipelago of interconnected mass mimics the human sensations through movement. When there is one or more people at the scene the installation starts moving, lighting and also send out scents when people are close enough so they could actually interact with this seemingly alien atmosphere.

Epiphyte Chamber

What I admired about it was the fact that it mimicked the movements of human body but at the same time it formed a totally different atmosphere. Even thou one part of the installation looked like the human movement, when all the installation was put together it formed rather an outer space alien-like atmosphere that made the audience forget about the human aspects of it. I like the fact that the artist was playing with this idea of galaxy, outer space and human movements.

It was work of a group of engineers, designers and architects were involved in it. They worked together since this installation required both artistic and engineering skills at the same time rather than separating into two parts. Through this cooperation and through the art work, I think that there are more possibilities of the technology and art combined together that can form unusual experience for people especially when it comes to indirect experience in the future.

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Technological art/design inspiration: Nevermind

Nevermind is a horror video game that, based on biofeedback and in-game choices made by the player, adapts to know not only what the player fears, but when they start to become afraid.

Using the Wii Vitality Sensor heart rate monitor, the game keeps track of when the player’s heart rate increases and becomes more difficult the more anxious or afraid the player becomes while playing. Additionally, it keeps track of in-game choices and dialogue options chosen by the player to identify each individual gamer’s fears and uses that data to more frequently impose the player’s fears upon them during the game.

What I love about this project is that it’s a distinct step closer to virtual reality/augmented reality in video games, which is something that’s been an idea on the table for a long time but has been difficult to implement realistically. The game treats the player as part of the story, allowing it to become a unique experience for each individual.

The game was initially created as an MFA thesis project at USC within their interactive media department. Because the game isn’t actually out yet, I’ve had some trouble finding out exactly how many people are involved, but the head of the team and creator of the project is a woman named Erin Reynolds.

more about the game:

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