Heated Conversations

Made by Chloé Desaulles

Hypothetical data driven artwork using human-to-human communications to generate heat induced patterns on the East Liberty Google Bridge.

Created: September 5th, 2018

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This hypothetical Google Commission imagined by Chloé Desaulles is a data driven artwork meant to depict and enhance human to human communication in Pittsburgh's rapidly gentrifying neighborhood, East Liberty. It additionally gives the opportunity for Google employees walking across the bridge to communicate physically and poetically with passerbys below. 

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In its passive state, the artwork uses information from the Google Push Notification APIs to find out the rate of communication between people in real time. The artwork only uses information from "human to human communication" applications, such as Google hangout, Gmail etc. This data is then translated to heat through metal rods embedded in the heat reactive glass structure. For instance, the faster push notifications get opened, the higher the communication rate is, therefore the more heat is produced. Inversely, at night push notifications stack up, untouched for many hours. This translates itself to a low communication rate and therefore less visual activity or colder tones. 

In its active state, the artwork becomes collaborative. To be switched to its active state it requires both a Google employee and a passerby below, to touch their respective heat sensors. This action then overwrites the passive mode, and sends a signal requesting maximum temperature -- rewarding physical interaction between strangers. The interaction ends as soon as either participant removes their hand from the heat sensor.

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Bill of Materials

- Heat reactive glass

- Metal rods

- Arduino

- Push Notification API

- Two heat sensors 

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48-734 Reactive Spaces and Media Architecture

· 21 members

How can embedded computation change the way we experience our surroundings? This class will focus on the design and prototyping of reactive spaces. Over the course of several small projects and one...more


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Hypothetical data driven artwork using human-to-human communications to generate heat induced patterns on the East Liberty Google Bridge.