Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Good Books + Good Links

Several of you have asked me about good books to purchase - here are three great ones to get you started > My top choice is: Physical Computing: Sensing and Controlling the Physical World with Computers by O’Sullivan, Dan and Igoe, Tom. [Thompson Course Tech Press, 2004], also: Responsive Environments: Architecture, Art and Design by Lucy Bullvant [V+A Contemporary, 2006], The Self-Made Tapestry: Pattern Formation in Nature by Philip Ball, 2001. All of these are available first or second-hand through Amazon.

Also, here are some of the links to research offices that we have discussed recently in the seminar: The Living run by David Benjamin and Soo-in Yang, Tristan d'Estree Sterk of the The Office For Robotic Architectural Media & The Bureau For Responsive Architecture, Francois Roche of R&Sie and Biothing. Also Peter Yeadon's nanoarchitecture. Enjoy!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Self-Organized Phenomena

Check out this Java Applet Slime Mold Simulation and the StarLogo Simulations of Self-Organized Phenomena. Also, take a look at this "exploring emergent behaviours" interactive essay. The site also includes a great set of links to other Artificial Intelligence sources.

Epigenetic Landscapes

During our 1-24-07 session we discussed ideas related to Conrad Waddington's, "Epigenetic Landscapes" (pictured above). It is an important concept for us to explore. If you would like to read more please see Sanford Kwinter's "Landscapes of Change" essay in Assemblage 19, 1993. Quoting Kwinter: "Epigenetic landscape seen from below: The complex relief features of the epigenetic surface are themselves largely the expression of a prodigiously complex network of interactions underlying it. The guy-ropes are tethered not only to random points on the overhead surface, but to points on the other guy-ropes as well, and to pegs in the lower surface that themselves represent only semi-stabilized forms, thus multiplying exponentially the non-linearities flowing through the system. Not to diminish in importance either is the tension surface above as a distinct domain contributing its own forces to the field. No change in any single parameter can fail to be relayed throughout the system and to affect, in turn, conditions all across the event surface." (image credit: Conrad H. Waddington, Epigenetic Landscape, in Strategy of the Genes, 1957)

LINK > Sensors, Actuators, Software, Controllers

Jameco (mailorder, nice pics)
RadioShack (local)
Electronic Plus (in CA)
Trossen Robotics
Solarbotics (hobby thin film solar mods)
All Electronics

Max/MSP/Jitter (student packages available)
Processing (free download)

Make Controller Kit
BASIC Stamp by Parallax

All Electronics, MobileVideoZone, QualityMobileVideo, Care Electronics

NYU Tisch Physical Computing ITP

Mechanics, Sensors, Gears

Sensors Galore: http://itp.nyu.edu/physcomp/sensors/Reports/Reports
Making Gears: http://www.cs.cmu.edu/People/rapidproto/mechanisms/chpt7.html
Input Tech (sensors etc.): http://www.billbuxton.com/InputSources.html
Kinetic Design Group Matrix: http://kdg.mit.edu/Matrix/matrix.html