Generative Movement in a small room

Made by Eunice Oh, Teddy Lee and Jeremy Sonpar

We repeatedly altered a simple movement algorithm in order to produce interesting patterns of generative movement that were indeterminate and emergent in the movement they produced. One of our main point was our use of looking down at cell phones as well as walking backwards to reflect the entropy and chaos seen when people look down at their phones while they're walking.

Created: September 29th, 2014

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Psuedocode:

runSimulation:
for each person
  if round = 1
    location = center
    direction = corner
   else if round = 2
     location = corner
     direction = center
   else
     location = random
     direction = random
   timer = 0
   if round = 5
    walk backwards
   else
    walk
if round = 4
  phone in pocket
else
  phone in hand
while timer < 120
  if timer mod 30 = 0 /*multiple of 30 seconds/*
     direction = random
  if person1 bumps person2
     person1 direction = person2 direction
     person2 direction = person1 direction
  if person bumps object not person
     if round = 1 or 2
       turn right
  else if round = 4
     turn left
  else
     if (timer div 10) mod 2 = 0 /*10s digit of seconds is even*/
         turn right
     else
         turn left
  increment timer
Click to Expand
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Initially, we started with a simple algorithm.

The first run, everyone started in the corners, facing the center, then we ran for two minutes.

For the first run, the rules were, you had to be looking down at your phone at a timer, every 30 seconds, you would spin arount clockwise to a new direction and keep going, if you ran into a object or a person, you would turn 90 degrees clockwise and keep going. We set up the chairs to outline the room with 2 chairs in the middle as obstacles. there was a hole in the chairs unfortunately which led to people going off camera sometimes.

On the second run, we closed the hole in the chairs, put more chairs in the middle of the room, and started from the center heading towards the corners. This led to more contact and more chaos.

On the third run, we mixed it up even further. We had people change which direction they turned when they bumped into people based on the seconds that had elepsed when they ran into something, when they were in odd multiples of 10, they turned right, and for even, left. For this run, we had people start from random places on the floor, by spinning around and then walking an arbitrary number of paces.

On our fourth run, we got rid of the phones and used a timer projected onto a screen instead to show the effects of not looking at phones on the chaos and overall feel of the performance. in addition, we always turned left when we bumped.

On the last run, we returned the phones, but now we decided to walk backwards while using our phones to record. This allowed us to have fleeting glimpses of other people walking externally, while not being able ot see the causes of our own changes in movement on camera.

Our goal was to simulate the chaos of a crouded sidewalk after classes with everyone on their phones and walking and bumping almost indiscriminately. We hoped to acheive this by using a small room, many desks as obstacles, and lack of vision through phones and walking backwards. Esepcially through the last video, where people turned left and even got stuck in emergent patterns while bumping into unseen obstacles, we think we have accomplished this task.

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We repeatedly altered a simple movement algorithm in order to produce interesting patterns of generative movement that were indeterminate and emergent in the movement they produced. One of our main point was our use of looking down at cell phones as well as walking backwards to reflect the entropy and chaos seen when people look down at their phones while they're walking.