The workshop is intended to provide students with skills in relation to Physical-Computing discipline , connecting the virtual information with physical ambient manipulation. The workshop will focus on exercising techniques, on hacking toys and on binding domestic electronics to massive digital “data pools”. At the end of the workshop, students will fabricate new physical interactions utilizing virtual data manifested in the physical world. The workshop approaches both theory and application of interfacing. As technical innovation and design merge into a symbiotic duality, the dichotomy disperses, by illustrating, in essence and practice, how these two terms are co-dependent.
By digital manipulation (or “hacking”) of common electronic devices, students will be able to implement domestic electronic machinery in the development. with that, the end result should be critical or poetic, as opposed to functional and productive. This workshop will examine possible ways to communicate ideas by using electricity as substance, very much like a sculptor uses marble or bronze. The workshop will allow students to develop new approaches for their future work, and to expand their ability to innovate in the emerging field of Interaction-Design.
Interaction-Design is a rapidly evolving set of activities at the intersection of design, technology, art and human-sciences. This course will expose students to elements of all four, which will coalesce, according to the discipline each student brings with him/her at the moment of entry. By making use of open-source environments and a “hands-on” approach to computing, students will gain knowledge about the emerging field of Interaction-Design: the design of new digital interactions, facilitated by information and modern technologies.
A major part of the course will be based on the popular InstantSOUP model. Developed in 2006, InstantSOUP is a path into the electronic world using an approach of “learning-by-making”, introducing electronic prototyping in a playful, non-technical way. It was developed following the experience gained in teaching physical Interaction-Design at Interaction Design Institute Ivrea.. It teaches how to make physical input devices for games, how to re-purpose electronic gadgets, how to activate physical objects from remote locations and even how to create little robots. When you start mixing the different soup ingredients, the possibilities are quite vast.
The ability to interface and control most domestic electronic machinery is done by the use of a new platform called “High2VeryHigh”. This platform was created in 2009 by Kfir Matza and Yaniv Steiner as a new section to the InstantSOUP project.