Returning Home


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(This sculpture is an ode to undo-ing.)

initial questions

What happens once we are put in a physical situation where the undo button is untouchable ?
What happens when you are faced with a physically unavoidable situation, while simultaneously faced with the fact that if the situation was digital, all that would be need is a simple ‘undo’ ?

researching these questions

Mind-mapping ‘home’
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Learning how source control can work visually, explained here:

precedences dealing with these issues

History tool in Photoshop


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physical home translated into a digital realm
using Git to control ‘versioning’ to a high degree

Gregor Calendar from Patrick Frey. Expressing ephemerality.

research and influences

Laurie Anderson, Home of the Brave (1986)
Laurie Anderson, Home of the Brave (1986)

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prototyping: what worked and what didn’t

Pocket projector sits on tray. Under tray is a drilled hole for the potentiometer knob. Originally tried using external battery pack with the Servo – that ran out quickly!

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choosing knitted and wool material, at Mood Fabrics

 Continuous Servo + RPi (written in Python, limited control over code)
Step Motor + Arduino (stopped working once mapped to potentiometer)
Step Motor + RPi (too slow! even without the potentiometer)

what was learned

Motors work differently – Servos , DC Motors, Step Motors work with magnets and gears.
Current runs through a coil, with controls the polarity of the magnet, changing the direction of the gears.
Didn’t need Picamera or openCV to achieve the effect I needed.
Continuous servos, give control over speed, not position.
For analog inputs on RPi, you need an external ADC (MCP3008).

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the final instantiation

The video serves as my final iteration of this concept.
It is a narrative of some recorded voices.
The moving parts work as you:
The ofSketch is projected onto knit.
Turn the potentiometer -> changes servo speed + scroll through ofSketch
The servo is attached to the knit -> the knit unravels, and is pulled around the nest. The nest grows in size.


RigidWrap plaster
felted wool
continuous servo
10ohm potentiometer
picco pocket projector
jersey knit
basswood panels
lots of tape + glue

final fritzing sketch
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code attribution

Moving images / Serial : Michael
Incorporating Perlin Noise : Andreas Muller

Servo, Arduino + RPi Simon Monk
Custom Stepper library : Igor Campos
Matt Hawkins /

future directions

Add decay to the images as they slowly disappear in OpenFrameworks.

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integer overflow –
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tested out variations of noise, Simplex noise seems more visually appealing due to the higher contrast

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