Fabrication assisted by Rom Zhirnov and electronics with participation by students of Situated Media Installation Studio (UTS B. Sound and Music Design, B. Photography and situated Media)
Theme 2010: Urban Media Territories; the re-stratification of urban public spaces through digital media.
This research is an investigation into Urban Digital Media, a field that inhabits the intersection between architecture, information and culture in the arena of technology and building. It asks how contemporary requirements of public space in our everyday life, such as adaptability, new modes of communication and transformative environments that offer flexibility for future needs and uses, can be addressed by a new form of public display through the use of an interactive polymedia pixel and situated media device protocol.
The weakness of many current media façades and building-scale interactive installation environments lies in the dearth of quality creative content and its unresponsiveness by ignoring potential human factors, richness of locative situation and contextual interaction (Sauter, 2004). Media facades have matured from being 2D visual display to 3D voxel arrays for depicting static and moving images with a spatial depth dimension (Haeusler, 2009). As a consequent next step in this development, this research investigates a display that reacts empathetically to human interaction and is responsive to its urban digital media; to integrate multiple modalities; smart energy-saving; and enabling community engagement in urban digital media content, i.e. responsive and interactive sensing capability.
Seven attributes of the Polymedia Pixel that address the above-mentioned inadequacies of public displays:
(1) contextual responsiveness - to physical, environmental factors;
(2) interactive responsiveness - to human intervention and activity in the proximity;
(3) intelligence - smart controls that can adapt physical behaviour to suit conditions,
(4) multimodality - ability to communicate through non-visual channels, such as sound;
(5) sensing and communication - in order to sense/detect conditions of environment, human interaction and to be accessed by networked mobile devices;
(6) energy efficiency - optimising energy expenditure and capturing self-powering energy sources and
(7) open protocol for networked device controllers to receive communication from a wide variety of devices, enabling public access and interactive content, localized to physical context.
The following elements comprise the anatomy of a Polymedia Pixel:
(1) LED for producing the image;
(2) Speaker for transmitting sound;
(3) PV cell for energy production;
(4) Photo-sensor to react to its environment;
(5) Microprocessor to process data and information;
(6) Microphone to record sound;
(7) WiFi to transmit data wireless;
(8) Bluetooth for communicating between pixels[and external device interaction].
The prototype design was first reported in the following paper in Turkey:
‘Interactive Polymedia Pixel and Protocol for Collaborative Creative Content Generation on Urban Digital Media Displays’
by M. Hank Haeusler, Kirsty Beilharz, Tom Barker at the International Conference on New Media and Interactivity 28-30 April 2010, Istanbul. http://iletisim.marmara.edu.tr/newmedia/page/11/main-topics-of-the-conference
The Fabrication Process
Icosidodecahedron form 3D printed model by Matthias Hank Haeusler. A precision centred 3D print was made in order to generate mold.
Mold for casting silicone
Rom removing the delicate silicone structures while they are still somewhat malleable, not hardened. A further overnight sees them harden substantially and the material reaches full strength after about a week.
The final translucent structure, which will be trimmed. Acrylic pentagon ‘windows’ clip into the openings after the rigid plastic equator and electronics have been installed inside.
Hank’s book also at the Vienna exhibition: http://www.mediaarchitecture.org/media-facades-hank-haeusler/
Das Buch führt in die Terminologie der Medienarchitektur ein und erläutert im ersten Teil die Geschichte der Medienfassaden anhand weltberühmter Beispiele wie Times Square, New York, oder Centre Pompidou in Paris. This book explores the terminology, recent history and developments in Media Façades, showing famous examples from Times Square to the Pompidou Centre in Paris.
Haeusler, M. Hank Media facades – History, Technology, Content, avedition, Ludwigsburg 2009.
Sauter, Joachim, “Das vierte Format; Die Fassade als mediale Haut der Architektur”, Fleischmann, Monika; Renhard, Ulrike (Eds), Digitale Transformationen. Medienkunst als Schnittstelle von Kunst, Wissenschaft, Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft, (Heidelberg: whois verlags und vertriebsgesellschaft, 2004).