Finals madness!

For my final in physical computing, my initial direction was to continue working with soft robotics. I wanted to explore the material more and create data-driven experiences that with softness, slowness and reflection as guiding principles. I brainstormed on multiple ideas and none of them felt satisfying. I was tired of being a one trick pony with silicon and nothing really felt like it was adding up to a meaningful experience. I spent a lot of time going around in circles till I gave up and focused on everything but Physical computing.

And that’s probably the best thing I did.

Not working on P.Comp gave me time and distance to think about it and combined with the happy coincidence of my friend Nun continuously going “I wish I could use all the buttons!”, it led me to a happy place that became the start of an idea that seems promising for the final project.

So here’s my 5 minute pitch:

Update: Lillian and Atharva have decided to team up with me! This gives us an actual chance to make a nuanced, complex interactive model so we have updated our deck with the new, refined idea.

  We were born in the 80s and was made in the 90s.

We were born in the 80s and was made in the 90s.

  It was a great time to be alive. The music was the best.

It was a great time to be alive. The music was the best.

  The cartoons were definitely the best.

The cartoons were definitely the best.

  The technology was clunky.

The technology was clunky.

  But with the physical controls, it was so satisfying.

But with the physical controls, it was so satisfying.

  It was intimidating to approach it.

It was intimidating to approach it.

  But when you got it, it became a part of your muscles.

But when you got it, it became a part of your muscles.

And the sounds really brought them to life.

  And we all remember clambering to rooftop antennas to fix a TV signal.

And we all remember clambering to rooftop antennas to fix a TV signal.

  But the 90s also had something awesome. Insanely obtuse point and click adventures games!

But the 90s also had something awesome. Insanely obtuse point and click adventures games!

  Where the instructions were minimal and the user had to play around with the interface to discover the path ahead. (In the image above, you have to throw a bone so that the fire beaver on top jumps from the ledge and then quickly pull out your fire extinguisher on it. Once the flame goes out, you can collect a key that opens a gate. Phew!)

Where the instructions were minimal and the user had to play around with the interface to discover the path ahead. (In the image above, you have to throw a bone so that the fire beaver on top jumps from the ledge and then quickly pull out your fire extinguisher on it. Once the flame goes out, you can collect a key that opens a gate. Phew!)

  So, we want to build a machine where the instructions are obtuse and the users have to play around with the interface to figure out how to make the machine work.

So, we want to build a machine where the instructions are obtuse and the users have to play around with the interface to figure out how to make the machine work.

  You walk up to to a machine that has a button, knob and dial garden on its face. There’s a single bulb blinking. What will you do?

You walk up to to a machine that has a button, knob and dial garden on its face. There’s a single bulb blinking. What will you do?