For this assignment, the idea was to create a simple server, similar to the class examples, with 3 different functions or restfull Apis. I looked at different example by Tom Igoe and some by Shawn Van Every. It made me a bit more familiarized with the code language used for this purpose, even if I still don’t understand some parts of the code of the more complex examples. So I chose the example of the “age checker” by Tom Igoe, to built my aplication around it (This, after a great deal of anxiety and confussion about how to get started).
So what I managed to do was simple but allowed me to understant the basics of what we saw on last class, and to realize I should learn about HTML and CSS, and also about web sockets.
The functions for the server I wrote are 3:
Selecting a color in terms of text.
Changing the color of the background.
Loading an image to the background. (still does’t work 🙁 )
The first asks you to put a color input by typing a)http://localhost:8080/check/color/red or b)http://localhost:8080/check/color/green, http://localhost:8080/check/color/blue, c)http://localhost:8080/check/color/(or something else). There is a bug I haven’t figured out when I enter blue. It doesn’t show a text message it’s supposed to show.
The second is for you to change the browser’s background. You enter a)http://localhost:8080/check/imageBackground/:imageBackground/change b)http://localhost:8080/check/imageBackground/:imageBackground/(something-else-other-than-change
The third function is for uploading an image. By entering the word image, an image will be loaded in the browser.
The first two work, but the third, It still doesn’t at this point.
The code at this point, without the image load function working properly for the mean time:
Since my first semester as a student of art in Chile, I’ve been curious about dice. O or you could say I fell in love with them. I started looking at them as a perfect case of design. The concept and the form matched perfectly, and there is nothing that is not essential in their physicality. They “speak” without using words or traditional numbers. I would strongly bet that they would make sense to any possible alien intelligence existing out there in the universe. Their language speaks to all in a very straightforward way, but I wouldn’t say what they have to say is as simple as one could think at first, or is it? Maybe… They are also so beautiful… irresistible for some like me!
So one day I decided to draw a die. I had of course seen many drawings and representations of them. But in this case the goal was to try to capture their spirit as full as possible, not only a drawing of how they look. So I made a drawing that would represent a dimension a had never seen in their representations: time. They are meant to be used over time, not only once,( but why not?) So they idea was to draw them many times, after rolling them, as we are supposed to do. So I got a large piece of white paper, a black marker, a pencil, a ruler, and started to draw. I decided to make a grid with many squares, each with the size of the dice. It sounds simple, but it’s not that easy! Then I started rolling the dice and making a drawing on each square, based on the face that was on top view on each roll.
The process was very slow and tricky. There was no room for mistakes. So I had to be focused and be sure that my hand was very steady and confident. In the process the randomness of life got in the way, I got very sick. That slowed the process, but it didn’t stop me from rolling the dice and fill the grid, after rolling the dice for more than 2300 times. I got dizzy because I had viral A hepatitis, but the process was very enjoyable other than that: I lost track of the noises of the world and the worries, hopes, and fears on my mind, while my eyes and head jumped between the dots and wondered what the next roll would be.
The result was this kind of drawing:
The resulting image after rolling the dice so many times was very shocking for me. I had never done anything like this ever before. I was just a witness of the dictate of the die. And what the die dictated seamed at the same time in complete randomness or chaos, but somehow organized. It had at the same time a geometrical and organic look. It gave a static feeling, but also a dynamic one.
So this got me into the rest of the experiments I have done as dice and roulette lover or visual artist. This are some of the experiments I have done so far in the same spirit, thinking about playing and the concept of randomness and different ways of “creating it” The key question behind this silly experiments is related to the following questions:
“Is there such thing as randomness?”
“If there is such thing as randomness, can we understand or control the levels of randomness?
“How can we produce systems to produce random outcomes?”
“How can they be improved or controlled?”
“Why can’t we be sure about the next roll of the dice or roulette when we have a database with past outcomes and the tools of probability to help us making a prediction?
“Could there be a perfect probability tool to predict the next roll of the dice?”
Take a bus, while you are sitting(if you get a seat) take a pen and place it on a piece of paper. Let your hand move as the bus travel. Let it drift through the paper. Try not to look at the paper. When you reach your destination remove the hand from the paper. Repeat whenever you feel like becoming an artist on the bus.
The bus drawings
It’s a Sony!
An interactive installation. A broken cd player that works with the open lid invites you to draw on top of the white cd, while you listen to a song. You can take the cd home or place it with others done by people.
The Wheel of fortune!
The idea in this case was making drawings out of different toy roulettes. By repetition, triying to reveal how each of them was biased towards certain numbers. And off course, to produce beautiful crazy vibrating and almost hallucinating compositions.
The Reflex project
A photographic game about randomness, memory, imagination and the city.
30 Shades of Gray.
The Traffic Jam!
An interactive sound toy to pretend you are a musician, and to enjoy or torture others and yourself with sounds from cars!
The natural randomness oracle.
Put natural things like rice or beans or lentils inside the container. Click the mouse, and recieve a picture. Relate the image to your current thoughts about your life.
The Sandman Oracle
Mark Sandman was a very talented musician. He played in different bands. He died on stage in Italy, while playing with Morphine. “His spirit now lives inside this computer. If you give him pepper for his ghost french fries, he will tell you what’s on his mind”
I started realizing that rolling the dice by hand is not enough to get as many results as by doing it with an automated system. So I started thinking seriously about making a system to do similar drawings as I was doing but in an automatic and more efficient way. This is why I came to ITP. Now that I’ve been here, I’m thrilled with the possibilities offered by technology that I never imagined. I’m very surprised to see this, that once I thought to be impossible for me to do is finally happening. I have considered different aproaches and directions, that offer different kind of posibilities around this concept of natural or physical randomness and the aid of computers and electronics for this purpose.
How can I perceive the random pattern generated by the dice?
An attempt to represent the dice in the dimension it is meant for, time.
The tension between order and chaos.
The sound piece is inspired by the Fluxus movement ideas, and artists like John Cage, that looked for inviting randomness into the process of art-making. And also to the works I have been doing exploring randomness through the repetition and visualization of “random actions” Please visit my website and see the ALEA JACTA EST section: http://www.nicolassanin.com/
Introduction: How do you introduce the guide? What do we need to know? Is the guide a part of a larger system we do not see or are unaware of?
Introduction text about energy, resources and transportation and cycling and energy.
How to use:
Rules could be to play with other player or players in turns.
One puts one card and other puts another and they develop a conversation based on he relationship between cards that they can find.
Each player shuffle her/his cards. Pick one and put it on the table. The second person does the same. Then they all try to create connections between the two cards that where put in the table. After a minute, one of the players adds another card. They talk to connect the ideas of that card with the other cards. This activity can continue until they place all the cards on the table. The final idea is for them to talk about conclusions of the conversation and questions that the process created.
The map will be a mind system graphic that connects the different topics related to the “Virtue of cycling energy”
How many entries are you doing?
How are the entries systemically interrelated? (e.g. select parts of a whole, the whole, a subset)
Non-linear way: they can be shuffled as a deck of cards.
How will you express the entries? What visual / linguistic system are you putting to work?
Relational: Conversation and collaboration (the underlying idea of a discussion as a colaboartive practice and not as an “ego war”
“connecting dots”growing map.
What visual styles are you using, what are you referencing?
Comics and sketchy kinds of images and also icons used for general use like corporate presentations or instructions of products or academic studies (used for giving facts“serious” communication)
The icons will be common universally used icons such as energy symbols like a flash, wheels of bicycles, cyclist signs, recycling signs and emogis.
Colors to be used will be black (reminds the tires of the bicycles. Also green to address the idea of clean energy and natural resources, renewable energy and ecology.
Open CV as a way to recognize the results of the die was used and worked. But it is very difficult to rely on its precision because of fabrication factors and other variables that can affect its accuracy, such as light changes, material and dirt particles altering the environment, among others possible problems. An alternative would be trying to use Open CV in a different mode, maybe using color percentage detection. The other path to explore is the QR code technology.
Using the blender as a dice roller sounds like a fun, possible, simple and great idea. But it’s not… Its power is too much and it is easy to lose control of the mechanical parts that are not designed for this specific use. It can roll dice, it actually did, but not constantly. According to experienced teachers in fabrication like Ben Light and Danny Rozin, this will kill itself sooner than expected.
But the blender is a very effective metaphor for rolling dice. So the idea is creating a machine similar to a blender that will be easily controlled, and will also be usable for a very long period of time, repeating almost infinite cycles. For this purpose, the next step is researching about motors, and stepper motors because of their reliability.
The visualization is working as expected, but this is just the beginning. The idea will be to create a flexible interface for the user to change the image, keeping the input, which will be always from the collected and always growing results form the dice roller. With the visualization, sound could also be explored as a way of using the data from the dice. This could make the drawing process more enjoyable also and interactive if we allow the users to play with the values of sound, linked to each of the numbers of the die.
Another step will be creating the database functionality. Along with this, the next challenge or dream, is creating a function for the computer to “make bets” according to the stored data that is being built through time. To create some kind of machine learning function for this purpose. And in that case, it could be fun to create a competition between users and the computer, to try to guess the next results of the die.
The conceptual idea that underlies the proposed project is the idea of chance. The particular question that drives the proposed project is to explore how random a particular die is? Is it chance or a sum of many factors difficult or almost impossible to understand what makes the illusion of chance?
Is repetition an effective way of revealing the degree of “randomness” produced by tools that were created to give way to chance, such as dice and roulettes among others?
To make an automatic dice machine roller that can roll a die repeatedly “forever”
To also link a camera or mechanism that reads the output of every roll of the die.
To collect that information, store it in a database.
To visualize the information in different and appealing ways. So the person that interacts with the piece can make an interpretation and consider these questions about chance and probability, but with a concrete case.
The goal is to build the dice rolling machine first. Second to make a capture interface of the outputs of the dice and data storage interface, probably with a camera and a computer. Then create a program that reads the stored data and write it to a visual sketch.
Mecanism and motors and fabrication to make the dice roller.
Coding language needed to write the programs. In detail, camera capture, machine visual learning to recognize the sides of the die, and data storage.
Milestones and calendar
Week 1 (until January 31) Project definition
Week 2: Prototype of the dice roller and research of motors and mechanisms.
Week 3: First version of the dice roller prototype
Week 4: Development of the software to capture the die output and data storage.
Week 5: Development of the software to capture the die output and data storage.
Week 6: Development of the software to capture the die output and data storage.
Week 7: Development of the software to take the data and visualize it.
Week 8: Development of the software to take the data and visualize it.