IDEOgraph: a record player to draw physical space flows

During his Fortnight internship,  designed and crafted IDEOgraph – a machine that captures the energy and flow of IDEO Chicago physical office space. The device is basically a record player made by:

  • two stepper motors to run the turntable and arm – the arm is used to draw on a disc or to cut it so to produce a tangible representation of the flow it captures
  • a servo mounted on the back side of the arm to lower and raise it;
  • a PIR motion sensor mounted over the counter in the kitchen to collect data and send it to an Arduino.

Code, diagrams and vector files necessary to make your own IDEOgraph are available here and on GitHub.

Find out more on IDEO Labs.

Moon Phases by Yingjie Bei and Yifan Hu: Arduino powered moon phase turntable

Moon Phases is an interactive device – created by Yingjie Bei and  Yifan Hu – that shows the moon phase for a given date as per user input. The device relies on Processing and Arduino to calculate the moon phase and then moving servo motors to posit the light accordingly. From the official project page:

The idea started from my very first processing sketch which is a 2D drawing for moon phases. From there, I started to expand and approach it from different perspective. The moon phases machine is the ultimate work through out the whole journey. It allows the audience to experience the moon phases’ changing in a tangible and poetic way. At the same time, it is also an educational piecing to learn about not only the moon phases from the past but also for the future.

On Yingjie Bei personal blog you can find more details on the project – including the original sketches and researches.

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Light Kinetics: an interactive installation by Espadaysantacruz

From the project page: “Light, as we usually see it, is an element that lacks mass, to treat it under the laws of gravity is somehow magical. The laws that describe the behaviour of light are hardly understandable because it neither behaves as body or as a wave. As Einstein wrote concerning the wave-particle duality: “We have two contradictory pictures of reality; separately neither of them fully explains the phenomena of light, but together they do”. In this project, we have built a computer simulator that reduces this extraordinary phenomenon to the simple classical mechanical laws”.

Installation setup: Arduino (to capture inputs) and Processing as interface between Unity and the dimmers.

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String Fountain: a kinetic sculpture that mimics moving water

String Fountain is a kinetic sculpture realised by Paolo Salvagione at Pier 9. The installation relies upon a propulsion motor to move string in the air. An Arduino board connects a motor to a computer to control up to 6 strings moving simultaneously. The 3D printing along with the assembly instructions are available on