Sunday, January 17, 2016

Turbidity Paintings hardware build begins

image from OpenROV
I began the build of the OpenROV 2.8 kits today with the immense moral and artistic assistance of Colleen today. the kits are the hardware for a new project called Turbidity Paintings by myself and collaborator Sara Gevurtz that investigates the notions of primacy of perception (Merleau-Ponty) as common root of all art and science.

i was awarded a Florida Research Fellowship in November which included a seed fund to purchase the hardware and get the project kicked off.

we proposed that in the act of capturing abstract images underwater we would also be creating a database of images that could be analyzed by water quality researchers. the title, Turbidity Paintings, is a nod to this idea—turbidity is the measure of particles in suspension in a water column. our project will use two OpenROV units to capture these images and other key water quality data such as nutrients, dissolved oxygen, etc. these data will be used to name the abstract images merging the images into a concurrent state of data and aesthetic object. See:

the project has gotten some interest in art/science communities and hopefully i will be announcing some other exciting news soon. it has also garnered some attention by environmental science and i have a research assistant from Dr. Matt Schwartz at UWF Earth and Environmental Sciences. we began collaborative research initiative and i will be working with Haley, a production/research assistant from that department.

Colleen and i put in a good 4 hours today; here's a timelapse of Build Day 01. We estimated about another 10 hours of build time until we can hit the pool for testing and learning to drive.

Monday, December 21, 2015

new code, new rig

POC Mindwave to WS2812 control with animation

Sunday, December 20, 2015

some headway

during the last few days, i have been working pretty diligently on writing code to in order to make the interactive response to the EEG data more organic. i have been able to get data response (light) mapped to a specific data (waveforms from alpha, beta, etc.). for about the past four days. my observations are that this mapping results in a jumpy output; the lighting is responsive to the latest reading and immediately goes to the next number. more often than not any two adjacent readings have a decent span between the numbers and then lighting rapidly dims or brightens.


my work over these days has been to learn how to engage multitasking on the Arduino stepping out into interrupts and  timer functions in order to measure the data over a longer period or grab two data points and then create a smoothing effect over the light changes. or in other words to take value currentReading - pastReading and divide that difference into 8 steps of change (fading in or out).

Friday, December 18, 2015


i don't even know what that means! :D this is a log of my continued research at Signal Culture

i have been really busy with the code on this EEG project and it is not easy.when i really hit the wall but need to get something done i have been focusing on making sure I have good diagrams to repeat the process. here are some of my Fritzing drawings. Fritzing is an open source diagramming, visualization and PCB layout tool that originated from the Fachshochschule Potsdam. the tool is invaluable in mapping real world looks at breadboarding and i use it in class all the time to help my beginner students see the layouts.

the other two tools for diagramming and PCB layout seem to be very good. and the user community is strong, contributed libraries for parts seems to be growing at a reasonable rate and i have tried to draw a few of my own parts, but i need to practice some more on that! if you can manage that or find the libraries you need, you can even directly connect with a PCB manufacturer to get production boards made directly. i have not tried their services yet.

as you can see it makes it very easy to replicate and is a great option for the PCB design/production

images of all three: visualization on breadbooard, PCB layout for production and diagramming

Thursday, December 17, 2015


today the new knowledge on Gernsback made me wonder about a project i shelved back in 2007. i spent a good amount of time on experiments in micro-broadcasting from 2006 - 2010. i built many FM transmitters from scratch that i used to form small bubbles of influence (temporary autonomous zones). i also wanted to tap into other media such as a colleague's iTunes partition on his laptop. i could broadcast Gary's playlists and mp3s throughout the art department. much of this research came from a sense of independent media and subversion of the bureaucracy official broadcast. the fire was stoked by desire to make handcrafted and to disrupt the culture of corporatized black box culture. if you don't void the warranty you don't own it.

i was reading a lot about the early microradio movement  and getting tons of information from Tetsuo Kogawa's Polymorphous Space website. Here is a link to the famous Toward Polymorphous Radio.

in 2007 i built my first TV transmitter. i was able to transmit a picture across the room at the CADRE Laboratory reminiscent of Apollo Moon Landings video. i am reading Peter D'Agostino's anthology TRANSMISSION (Tanam, 1985)while at the Signal Culture research residency. i begun to wonder whether i should pick up this line of experiments again. as of today, there are only 7 nations that haven't really begun Analogue to Digital Switchover.

one of these is CUBA!! a really relevant place to be thinking about right now.