Posted on Thu 26 May 2016
Robotic Arms, Lasers and Beetles
Throughout November our project has really developed. Through conversations with Pervasive Media Studio associates and staff we have realised that our concerns lie more with emergent behaviours (thanks Tarim!) in technology…
Throughout November our project has really developed. Through conversations with Pervasive Media Studio associates and staff we have realised that our concerns lie more with emergent behaviours (thanks Tarim!) in technology rather than artificial intelligences.
This step has led us directly to developing much more of a focus to the project. We have had a number of meetings with Dr. Adam Spiers, Research Associate at University of the West of England's Bristol Robotics Laboratory and Pervasive Media Studio associate, which have refined our research. Adam was kind enough to show us around Bristol Robotics Laboratory, which was every bit as exciting as it sounds. He has also helped us to think about how we could develop a bespoke robotic arm set up, that would interpret drawings we would give to it and produce its own versions, and is now working directly on the project to develop both the hardware and software sides of the project. Which is great as we have no idea how to do this. We are really happy with the way the robotic arm project is shaping up and are planning to show the results as part of our exhibition at Ceri Hand Gallery, London in February 2013.
We are in the process of assembling the robotic arm (see exciting photo of one of the actuators and some of the packaging) and are currently working on designs for a bespoke laser cut perspex housing for the arm, with the intention that the device functions both as a tool and a sculpture. We're hoping to have the arm's new shiny rigid plastic skin completed in the new year.
Also there have have been very exciting developments in a project that Dan at Pervasive Media Studio has been developing with us. At the start of our residency we talked to Dan about an application that could put a virtual beetle inside your computer, with the intention that the beetle would rummage through your files, pinching bits of your jpgs with which it would assemble new images. This has evolved to become a programme that gradually turns your photo collection into instant 'I AM THE BEETLE' meme images. Awesome! There's a selection of results attached from the current version Dan is working on.