John Schimmel’s Interactive Electronic Art

I’m still not sure how I got linked to THIS blog/project website (I suspect through links in Engadget somehow), but it’s one of the coolest websites I’ve been to recently. The site is run/maintained by the artist, John Schimmel, who is in a program at NYU for Interactive Telecommunications. A few of the projects of interest include the Fireflies and the Coffee Table.

The Fireflies are LEDs controlled by a PIC microcontroller that use touch sensors to react to humans and get brighter. They also communicate with each other through RF circuits so that touching one jar will cause all others within range to react. From this project site, there is a link to one of my new favorite suppliers of electronic prototyping parts: Spark Fun

The Coffee Table is a magnetically controlled bus that will eventually move around a city of objects and will react to magazines being placed on the top of the table so as to not drive under them. Schimmel used recycled printer parts to help control the arm that moves the bus, which is both a cool use for old technology.
Coffee Table

Schimmel’s art is some of the most interesting and resourceful I’ve seen recently. His integration of technology into the physical pieces of art to have human interaction and responses to the stimulus cause the art to change is amazing and brilliant.

Pictures are linked from John Schimmel’s web site and are hosted there, not here. Photos are Copywrite John Schimmel, not me.



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