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Variate Labs

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CCSL Self Replication Robots

  lipson.jpgHod Lipson at the Cornell Computational Synthesis Lab created intelligent robotic modules that have the ability to recreate themselves. This system was designed so that the number of modules could grow thus making it possible for the system as a whole to have more variation at a larger scale. These robots were made using 3d printing technology compounded with individual microprocessors. Self-similar modules have the ability to wirelessly connect and reconnect through electro-magnetic male-female connections. Interesting text from the author: Contrary to previously held views that self-replication is a property that a system either has or has not ("you can't be half pregnant"), our theory suggests that it is actually a continuum, where different systems can self-reproduce to different extents. The extent to which a system is self replicating depends on things like how fast does it self replicate, how accurately does it self replicate, how dependent is it on its environment to self replicate, how complex are its building blocks, how complex it is itself, etc. etc. For example, crystals self replicate, but only in a solution; rabbits self-replicate - less accurately and more slowly than a crystal - but they are less dependent on having a specific environment.” More Images Video Links found here. No Comments »

Mtran 2 and 3 by DSDRG

 

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4oSavAHf0dg[/youtube]

The Distributed System Design Research Group began experimenting with different generations of the MTran 2 robots in the hopes of creating a system of self similar robotic modules that would have the ability to change their geometry to accomplish goals. Rapid prototyping, particularly involving the fabrication of electronic parts and a laser cut plastics allow for modules to be inexpensively and quickly manufactured. Much of the logic behind this system mimmicks animal body typology and locomotion. But this system based on its geometry has the ability to nest creating solid objects, limiting gaps between objects. Self-similar modules have the ability to wirelessly connect and reconnect through physical male-female connections.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ae2GdtetpCE[/youtube]

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Metamorphic Space by Robert Miles Kemp

 

miles.jpgMiles Kemp’s Masters Thesis at Southern California Institute of Architecture looked at the logic behind robot precedents at the Cornell and Xerox Parc and developed a series of robot prototypes that related to reconfigurable architectural space.

The main idea behind this project was to develop a series of self-similar nested shapes that have the ability to be reprogrammed by the user post-production to accommodate changing demands. To accomplish this task in architectural terms he developed an entire palette of robots (materials, interactivity, and mechanical) that come together at specific instances to achieve a desired geometry.

The scale of the module was extremely important. With technology getting smaller and smaller (nano scale) this project envisioned that these objects would be the size of a fingernail and have the ability to change location. Self similar modules could make new physical connections and move around each other based on connections of self-similar parts.

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Concert ReacTable

  reactable.jpgThe Reactable was developed by the Music Technology Group in Barcelona. This interface uses simple patterns placed on objects. The direction of the patterns and proximity to each other determines the type of sound being produced. Users have the ability to interact with the table as they rearrange the objects over time. All users interact in the same environment as they create sound through one speaker. This interface is interesting because the direction and type of patterns determine what the music sounds like. One could imagine that new users would have the ability to create their own types of blocks that would create new spatial arrangements and new music. Video Links found here and here. No Comments »

Planar Manipulator Display by NYU Media Research Lab

  moving_furniture.jpgResearchers at the NYU Media Research Lab have developed the Planar Manipulator Display (PMD). This device allows users to rearrange objects based on input criteria. Through user input objects on magnets are moved into different arrangements. Preset code and geometry dictate rules that allow objects to move while preventing collisions. Video Links found here, here and here. No Comments »

3D Topographic Map Table by Applied Minds

  3dmaptable.jpgApplied Minds has developed a touch table that displays information in a three dimensional way. Originally developed for Northrop Grummen this table creates a three-dimensional tactile physical map. 4600 pins powered by a single motor push up touch-sensitive silicone screen to simulate the height topography, while vacuum sucks down the rest of the 'unpinned' skin. An overhead projector displays a geographical map on skin. The touch-sensitive skin allows gesture input for panning, zooming, & locating. This system responds to touch and can be reprogrammed to display different types of information. More info can be found here. 1 Comment »

Robert Miles Kemp Bio

  miles.jpgMiles Kemp is the founder and principal of Variate LABS and Series Design/Build. Miles is currently developing a number of interface, robotic and spatial projects in Los Angeles, New York, London, Mexico City and Munich. Miles also works as a Senior User Experience Designer and Information Architect for Schematic Inc. specifically developing next generation interfaces for web, touch, gesture and other emerging technology platforms. In addition to his professional work, Miles also created and moderates a blog about robotics and emerging technologies in architecture, www.spatialrobots.com. His work and research is centered on developing and understanding interactive architecture, primarily focusing on user-driven reconfigurable space and robotics. He has been published in numerous international articles and has lectured multiple times on this subject. Miles thesis project on Nano-scale Reprogrammable Space has been widely published and continues to be used as reference for current robotic projects in architecture. Before developing interfaces and robotics, Miles worked in the architecture industry for over twelve years and played a major design role in over sixty built projects. Miles' first book, entitled iA:interactive Architecture; the history and future of interactive space, co-authored with Michael Fox, will be commercially available through Princeton Architectural Press January 15th. Variate LABS was founded by Miles Kemp in 2003 as a means to investigate and design interactive projects in all types of mediums. Variate Labs is a group dedicated to strategizing, designing and building interactive information systems. Variate Labs works in all types of digital and physical mediums but are particularly interested in projects that involve a synthesis of the two with emphasis on spatiality. Our work includes collaborations and independent projects in web, broadcast, multi-touch and gesture based interfaces, graphic design, robotics, manufacturing, prototyping and interactive architecture. Series Design/Build was founded by Miles Kemp in 2005 as a means to argue against the inflexibility of built architecture around us. Instead, series proposes that objects and built environments should be designed to offer a variety of potential results from a basic model. Series calls this type of built flexibility "variated architecture". Variated architecture has the flexibility to be manipulated before and after production in order to accommodate the evolving needs of the user over time. Series is currently developing multiple patent submissions that involve re-programmable building systems, interactive architecture, and handheld products. Spatial Robots, created by Miles Kemp in 2007, is a blog dedicated to cataloging, critiquing and promoting interactive spatial systems and emerging technology in architecture. This website showcases interfaces, media, websites, robots, nanotechnology, objects, materials and logic with emphasis placed on being interactive and spatial (3-D). Miles received his Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Maryland and his Masters degree in Architecture from the Southern California Institute of Architecture (Sci-ARC). Miles grew up on a farm in rural Easton, Maryland, building boats and houses with his father and growing plants and shearing sheep with his mother. Besides his professional interests, Miles enjoys developing and unscientifically testing chili recipes for future chili competitions (hoping this will be the year). Miles spent two years performing local law 11 inspections of skyscrapers in New York and rode scaffold lifts up and down the exteriors (some as high as 675 feet!). Except for Alaska and Hawaii, Miles have been to every one of the continental states and has driven across the US four times. Link to bio No Comments »
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