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Tag Archives: design

I came across this Researcher whilst studying for my degree unfortunately for a while i forgot his name and could not find him online (found him again now.) I was really impressed with his work in manipulating data from the Wii remote and taking the basic principles of how the Wii-mote works and flipping them, twisting them and basically manipulating them to become much more creative and useful.

Johnny Chung Lee – Link

I recently visited the ICA to see an art installation produced by Luke Jerram. Dream Director is a very interesting investigation into the realms of sleep and dreaming. The work builds upon work already out by psychologist Chris Alford at University of west England.

I am particularly interested in the technology around this project. People were invited to stay over night in a gallery theirs beds were custom designed pods.  Each pod was loaded with it own set of sounds and the sleeper was asked to wear an eye mask designed to measure rapid eye movements. As the sleeper entered the dream stage of sleep the different sounds stored in the pod were used to try and shape the way the person dreamed. In the morning everybody that took part in the investigation was asked to fill in a questionnaire about the dreams that occurred while they were in the pod. I thought this investigation/installation was very interesting. The exhibition is very worth visiting as the whole thing has been well documented with a documentary moving image piece screened at the ICA as well.

A little more info on sleep:

“rapid eye movements occurred periodically and in conjunction with a number of physiological changes. For example the brain waves exhibited low voltage and fast activity, and heart and pulse rates seemed to speed up. As Kleitman later described it, “These changes suggested some sort of emotional disturbance, such as might be caused by dream.”

quote and table found here

I would be very interested to know how the rapid eye movement detecting goggles are actually made if anybody out there knows!

To find out what else is on at the ICA go here

I am starting to get quite obsessed with procesing at the moment its a very addictive framework. I have been experimenting with the video class library. Processing allows for individual pixel comparison of each capture from a webcam. The code from the video in this post compares the current webcam capture to the previous capture from the webcam. The code scans from left to right top to bottom when it finds the first pixel that is different from the previous capture it draws a circle on the screen at that point. One of the interesting problems solved from this code was converting the linear array of pixels from the webcam capture to the 2d space on the form.

xPos = The modulous or remainder of pixelnumber / width.

yPos = the result of pixelnumber / width ignoring the remainder.

ps. ignore the quality of my very very old webcam its just impressive it still works

I found this watch for the visually impaired while stumbling through vast content found at The watch was designed by Matthew Wagnerfield. The first thing that grabbed me about this watch is the beautiful craftsmanship; its well designed and well made. The second thing that really impressed me was that the watch can be read by the blind or visually impaired. The clock face is based around a standard 7 segment digital character display but instead of using light to communicate the message this watch uses mechanically animated segments to convey the time. The segments lower and raise by a difference of 1mm so the time can be both seen and touched.

Pretty self explanatory really. Its a really nice idea that originated from the punk era. If anybody knows of this technique being used in professional recordings i would love to hear about it.

I found this image on good old here >> instructable

I recently saw a post on about a Master Kenji Kawakami. At first i thought it was a joke the sort of thing you would see in a youtube style viral video. As i watched on i did notice that there was a level of ingenious invention behind the objects Kawakami made. So i did some very rough Internet digging and found out that this inventor is actually a living legend a sort of famous mad professor. Kawakami has hundreds of inventions under his belt and he even coined a phrase which is —– Chindōgu.

wikipedia Chindōgu

Chindōgu (珍道具?) is the Japanese art of inventing ingenious everyday gadgets that, on the face of it, seem like an ideal solution to a particular problem. However, Chindōgu has a distinctive feature: anyone actually attempting to use one of these inventions, would find that it causes so many new problems, or such significant social embarrassment, that effectively it has no utility whatsoever. Thus, Chindōgu are sometimes described as ‘unuseless’ – that is, they cannot be regarded as ‘useless’ in an absolute sense, since they do actually solve a problem; however, in practical terms, they cannot positively be called ‘useful’.

This notion makes me smile and so Master Kenji Kawakami i salute you. I’d like to think that having seen Kawakami’s stuff i can lace some of the fun, humour and ingeniousness into my own work.

here are a few examples of his work:

Ever woken up from a day dream and found that you had been subconsciously tapping the beat of the last song you heard frantically on to the nearest available surface? I think people inherently have rhythm obviously some more than others. Recently this weird beat thing that we all seem to have seeping sneakily through our subconscious has been trying to surface in the design and hacking world. I alone have found 3 very blatant examples in a space of hours. Check these examples out and if  you are aware of the inner beat surfacing in any other shape or form i would love to know. cheers and gone (its ridiculous how asleep i should be right now).

complete solenoid orchestra:

Yuri Suzuki and Bahbak Hashemi-Nezhad “tip tap”:

and the creme de la creme of automated tapping – Automated drum kit by Resonance studio and Arcattack:


Yuri Suzuki:

Bahbak Hashemi-Nezhad:


Resonance Studio:

Making sound using the graphite from a pencil to continue the flow of electricity. The video is all a bit cheesy but the idea is very cool.  There is a nice bit where the current flows between two people each holding a drawdio. The Drawdio is based on a 555timer though by the name i thought it was another arduino project ( read the comments ) 😛

check out how to make the Drawdio and where to buy the kits HERE

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