Category Archives: art

Keep Your Hands Bug-free with Tails, the Surveillance Sanitizer

If anyone’s been at the space in the past couple of weeks, you may have noticed me peeling labels off tiny sanitizer bottles and measuring the insides of their caps with calipers while tweaking settings in OpenSCAD. This is for a project I’ll be bringing to the Internet Yami-Ichi this Saturday, September 12th at Knockdown Center. Aside from including generic aloe-vera hand sanitizer, “hidden” within the each cap is an 8GB USB drive pre-loaded with the Tails Live OS, 1.5.1 (sticker was printed after the new release), which you can boot into from most computers that allow booting from USB drives.

Tails is maintained by a team of really awesome folks across the world who are working in the Laura-Poitras-level edge cases of severe state surveillance that no one else will invest time or money into. In making a physical manifestation with a deliberate design, I want to commemorate what they do and bring their work to the attention of new audiences, in a similar vein as one of my projects last year. Tails also depends in part from donations from its users, so I’ll be pledging 25% of each sale at the Internet Yami-Ichi directly to the Tails project.

There’s only 20 bottles for sale, so stop by Knockdown Center on Caturday to get yours before they sell out!

.dh

Keep Your Hands Bug-free with Tails, the Surveillance Sanitizer

Vera Wilde, artist-in-residence at Hack42. Because Art & Science!

Since this week Hack42 is proudly hosting a new artist-in-residence. Dr. Vera Wilde (PhD PoliSci) is a (former) Harvard Kennedy School researcher. She is working on re-branding the ‘Dark-Web‘ to the EDTR-web, a place for Expressing, Dissenting, Teaching and Resisting. The EDTR-web is using technologies like TOR and encrypted communications tools to create a place of freedom where centralised power cannot reach.

Vera will be using arts (oil painting and songwriting) as well as writing and political science research methods to define and develop the EDTR-web as a social space and technological phenomenon. More updates to follow over the next weeks.

Vera Wilde, artist-in-residence at Hack42. Because Art & Science!

Photography byDennis van Zuijlekom (@dvanzuijlekom), photon masseur extraordinaire.

A Sneak Peek at Some Interactive Show Installations

#drowning at Art Hack Day: Deluge. Photo by Margarida Malarkey

The sixth annual NYC Resistor Interactive Show is coming up this Caturday at 8pm. We have an overly generous baker’s dozen artists building a show fit for both organic and robotic party goers. We mentioned a few in our previous post, and here are a few more…

Our musical guest is plants! Not a band name, its actual plants that play instruments. Kirk Kaiser’s Plant Controlled Robot Bongos as well as Amy Cheng with her Plant Cyborgs are bringing the party, vegetation style, with their biohacks.

A Sneak Peek at Some Interactive Show Installations

Do you like ducks? What’s a party without ducks? How about robot ducks! We got one. Join the trip in Jakob Theileis’s Kinetic Robot Farm.

A photo posted by David Huerta (@huertanix) on

Are you the mutant savior? Find out at the Reformed Church of Robotron, by regional bishops Adam Mayer and David Huerta. It’s totally not the Church of Robotron from Oregon. They are heretics who have gone astray and we are the true church. You think otherwise, blasphemer? Beat our high scores to prove it!

The NYC Resistor Interactive Show is taking place on…

May 30th, 2015
8:00 PM ET – Late

…at…

NYC Resistor (between Bergen and Dean)
87 3rd Ave. Floor 4 (use this OSM link if you’re Richard Stallman)
Brooklyn, NY 11217

Python Mode in Processing

I finally got around to using Python mode for Processing 2.x. I have used pyprocessing for 1.x in the past but the current version is supported by the official IDE. While I am not very good in either, I am more comfortable with Python over Java, Processing’s default language.

I create a few simple “sketches” to get used to the format. After comparison of a few animations in both languages, Python mode was noticeably slower – around 2-3 FPS versus > 15. I worked around this issue by saving each frame as an image and combining them with GIMP to make a .GIF animation. Here are a few sketch outputs – both static and dynamic.

 

Python Mode in Processing

 

 

Python Mode in Processing

Calling all post-internet, pre-singularity interactivity artists!

Photo by Trammel Hudson.

The Interactive Show is coming up faster than Big Dog on a graphene high! This year we’ve been musing over the future and our relationship between us our robot friends. So much of our imaginations have been shoehorned into narratives of subservience (Jetsons, the Matrix) or all-out war (Terminator, the Butlerian Jihad). Why not envision a future where we party hard with our robotic friends instead? This year, we’re calling all of Brooklyn’s finest interaction artists to portray the future, preferably with robots in it, through interactive art. Here’s some footage from last year’s show to give you an idea of what you’d be in for:

This year’s show will be May 30th. If you’re interested in being part of a show, drop us a line at ishow@nycresistor.com! Try to get in touch by April 26th so we can make sure there’s space for your project. Hope to hear from you soon!

Zero to Hero Class: Pirate Box Edition.

I'll be teaching a class on how to setup a Pirate Box at the Generator on March 22nd. Check out more info and sign up here.

Want to carry around a world of important data, like Wikipedia, and health guides?
Need a way to share a bunch of files with some folks?
Come learn how to make a PirateBox a tool for sharing information in a secure offline manner!

PirateBox is a DIY anonymous offline file-sharing and communications system built with free software and inexpensive off-the-shelf hardware. Perfect for public spaces as a means of sharing interesting data and having offline discussions.

Zero to Hero Class: Pirate Box Edition.During this quick 4 hour  class students will learn how to build a Pirate Box. This class will guide students through the process of converting a plain TP-Link MR3020 and USB thumb drive into a Pirate Box.

$50 lab fee covers purchase of Pirate Box and all necessary materials (MR3020 & USB Drive).

Niles – the Ball Bearing Glockenspiel

I have been working on a ball bearing glockenspiel. The contraption will be comprised of 3 systems – ball bearing launcher, ball bearing collection and return mechanism, and the instrument itself.

I started with the the launcher. There will be 25-30 notes and a fast and accurate launcher will be needed for each one. My design parameters were to launch 4 bearings a second within a 1/2 inch diameter over a 2 ft. drop. Here’s my first attempt.

Niles – the Ball Bearing Glockenspiel

A pipe feeds ball bearings to a rotating platform with a hole just large enough for one bearing. When it’s ready to drop, the servo rotates the platform by about 30 degrees and the bearing falls out the bottom. The platform then rotates back  to the home position and loads the next ball. The mechanism could definitely deliver the balls quickly but the accuracy just wasn’t there. The balls would hit the side of the hole as they were exiting. On to the next iteration…

Niles – the Ball Bearing Glockenspiel

Niles – the Ball Bearing Glockenspiel

I forgot to take a picture of this one so I am posting the drawings instead. The concept is the same as the previous version, except the slider is linear instead of rotary. I added a longer channel after the initial drop to guide the ball bearings as they fall. But I had the similar accuracy issues.

So, I kept iterating the design to minimize potential disturbances after the ball is launched. And of course, decided to use magnets. The bearing are made out of steel and magnets suspend the ball till a servo controlled “plunger” launches them. This design worked beautifully! I have attached two slow motion videos below. As you can see in the second video, it’s so accurate the balls are literally hitting each other like Robin Hood “splitting an arrow”!

Next, I will work on making this design more compact and also, several ball return mechanisms.