Big LEDs final

As people walk down the stairs , the hand channels mirror them. Once they get to the bottom of the stairs their mirrored shadows disperse into a matrix emanating out the the hand channel and along the wall. 

Cameras take footage from above the stairs and map them along the LEDs in the hand channel. 

Hand channels are diffused with acrylic. LED running on wall is also diffused. 

Critical Objects Final

Team: Arnab Chakravarty, Gilad Dor.


For our final, we are working the topic of more-than-human centered design. As we collectively face environmental degradation in the context of the Anthropocene, the question we are asking ourselves is whether we can build systems that include non-human voices and agendas. Can we design everyday technologies to amplify our connection with the non-human instead of hiding them away? Is there any space for designing objects of technology with principles of empathy and kindness instead of efficiency and usability? Here, we would like to anchor our project in the principles of Para-functionality as defined by Anthony Dunne in the book “Hertzian tales“ and the idea of eccentric engineering by Tega-brain.

The form of our final project is tentatively titled ‘Plant radio‘ where the functionality of a radio and a plant is intertwined into its form and function. The plant is embedded with moisture, light and humidity sensors and the users have a big dial with which they can change the radio station. The radio station plays as expected when the plant is being kept well. However, if the plant is not being taken care of it will randomly change the radio station to another station that is close to it’s mood (sadness, hurt, melancholy). The user and the plant engage in a subtle tug of war which doesn’t have a fix apart from taking care of the plant. The aim is to make the viewers and users think about the nature of out computationally mediated interfaces.


  • Soil/moisture/light sensors -> Arduino -> VS0153 mp3 board -> FM transmitter


  • Attribute: Household object

  • Device: Transmission

  • Mood: Eccentric


  • Tabletop object with 1 to 1 interaction between the user and the device.

  • No acrylic


critical 5_ anxiety


critical objects 4

Predictive Policing Awareness Machine

Working within the guidelines of having an organic element, conveying surrealism, and emoting anxiety; Morgan and I had to choose an aspect of tech and to design and build a critical object around it.


We decided to work around the topic of systemic bias, more specifically that of predictive policing and their use of artificial intelligence. This piece from Propublica was eye opening to us and helped to shape the framework of the awareness machine we created.

The critical object we created was based around the idea of of a feedback cycle where data that has an innate bias in it continually gets fed into a system where the output seems uncontaminated but contains remnants of the biased data within it.

The system we created was an organic representation of those black box systems. Having a dropper of durian essence, an extremely pungent fruit that can fill a room quickly, fall onto a flower which acts as the output of the system. The liquid then creates an odd sensation where a flower which is usually associated as beautiful and pleasant smelling is now revolting. The final piece of the system is that the flower has a chance of falling into a blender and being chopped up. This is partially to make a statement about how the American criminal justice system can be a crap shoot and to say that it can have permanent effects on those who fall into it for one reason or another.

Arduino Code

Subtraction - Othermill 2

In July 2017 I was on a cross country and one of my favorite spots that I visited was Monument Valley. In the visitor center of the park there was sculpture of the silhouette of the two definitive structures of the park, West and East Mitten Buttes. I always had thought of ways that I could use this piece as an inspiration. I had found some really nice 15 ply plywood that I wanted to use for this project, but as the day went on there were too many people on the Othermills for me to get to my final ply, and I ended up just sticking with my test runs.

Subtraction - Othermill Milling Machine / Bantam

This was my first time using the Othermill Milling Machine.

We were given a skill builder but I had seen a photo on my phone of sketches a friend of mine had done and wanted to make on of the sketches.

I happened to be near Canal Plastics last week and snagged one of the small 2x2” acrylic. I had to play around a lot with the sizing and the turns for the character as the 1/8’’ bit can only handle so sharp of turns.

Thankfully since you can update it in the Bantam app it made playing with the corners so much simpler.

I think I’m going to try to make a series of these Weird Dogs and send them to my friend, but I will size up on the acrylic pieces and maybe get some smaller bits.

Final Piece

Final Piece



Subtraction - Hand Router

Nick Gregg and I decided to work together on the Hand Router assignment. We went through the skill builder, trading off turns routing the piece of wood.

Once we had cut out the general design of the circular shape, we decided to sketch with the router throughout the inside of the shape.

Nick would choose a depth and start cutting a path, and he would trade it over to me to do some cutting. We went back and forth until we felt fulfilled. Finally, we cut the shape out and titled it “Road Map To My Heart” 2019”

These photos got out of order towards the end, sorry.

Critical Objects - Comfort Frame

As we increasingly look at the world around us through our smart phones, the prospect of looking at the real world as it is becomes disconcerting.

The Comfort Frame solves this problem by always providing you with the comfort of a phone frame, mediating your visual perception of your surroundings.

Available for purchase at all museum entrances.

Collaboration with Sukanya Aneja.


Gilad's Box

Gilad's Box


1 - After the Build, Comes the Failure

I will be posting a separate documentation solely for the building of the box.

This is the original p5 sketch that I was using as the reference for the interpretation of reality onto my matrixes. Another student Elvin was doing a similar idea and since we were both working off of Shiffman’s Brightness Mirror he shared his code with me for sending live video to a matrix. I attempted to use this with p5serialcontrol but even with Shawn’s help we could get it going.

If I was only using one wall with live video being displayed I could have used a Fadecandy with this code and it most likely would have worked well. But alas my ego caused me to have this massive canvas to work with.


2 - Post-Failure, Repositioning and Making Due

I was pretty disappointed that I couldn’t get any video going with what I imagined to be a pretty simple process, and kind of decided to drop live video. I was introduced to Dominick Chang, a second year student and he gave me his DMX King LeDMX4 PRO an OEM Board for direct Art-Net to RGB/RGBW pixel strip/array control. Basically but connecting this board to my computer by ethernet, and to the board’s ground and data I could address each matrix directly from MadMapper.

Fabrication - Two Materials


I did not take proper documentation of this project.

I was walking by the store Huckberry a few weeks ago (on my birthday) and saw that they were doing an event with Popular Mechanics. The Popular Mechanics instagram has a few photos of the event and the tools used.

I actually cut my thumb with the hole maker for the rivets. After the cut, I told them to put tape on the sharp side and it’s cool to see that they did.

taped up hole maker

taped up hole maker