Week 7: Response to Theft and Artistry -Lynn Zhang (Madsen)

The article mainly talks about the phenomenon which is quite common in the music area, especially in pop music. I have never thought about that even the music can also be a worst-hit area of copying. Lots of famous singers are said to have copied others or have simply used African music as a silent background. For example, Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” is said to have taken inspiration from Latin-American reggaeton. In that way, these kinds of songs should be criticized because they have ignored the copyrights and the respect of different cultures.

But I think the “cultural colonialism” is too strict. It’s not right to simply copy others’ work, but if the music is made not for the pure commercial interest, but for the global aim, it’s not that bad to copy others to make the music piece. For instance, it’s not bad to copy from different cultures to make a more global music to call on everyone to take actions to protect the world from the climate change. In that case, the music copied in order to make it sounds more inspiring. Thus, I think we should look at things dialectically.

Working with Electrons | Mid-Term Project Proposal – Pellegrino (Cossovich)

Mid-Term Project Proposal

I. Project Title: Repurposing An Induction Heater

II. Project Statement of Purpose

The purpose of my project is to investigate a source for creating heat in order to power a simple spinning wheel. Conventionally, spinning wheel projects are naturally powered by lit candles, however, I aim to use an induction heater to power the spinner in order to explore the relationship between the power of electromagnetism and the power of a burning candle.

Roughly, an  induction heater uses electromagnetic induction, using a high frequency alternating current to create a fast alternating magnetic field. This concentrated field generates an electric current, called eddy currents, within the conducting object which then cause the conducting object to heat up.

My project is an investigation into understanding more specifically  how an induction heater works, building the device, and testing various conducting materials along with manners in which these could be used to power a simple heat spinner. In its finality, this project functions as an investigatory art instillation that repurposes an induction heater.

III. Literature & Art, Perspectives & Contexts

This project derives from the framework of a Christmas Pyramid. Christmas pyramids were first created in Germany in the 16th century (“Where Did”). These conventionally wooden structures use the heat from candles to spin a wheel mounted atop the structure. The design developed in the mining region of Erzgebirge, Germany and has evolved into more complex designs and sculptures since. Generally, they have religious significance and are still an integral decoration in German homes (“Where Did”).


“Where Did the German Christmas Pyramid Come From.” ChristKindl-Markt, 2018, https://www.christkindl-markt.com/where-german-christmas-pyramid-come-from-a-44.html.

IV. Project Description

For this project, I want to build an induction heater so as to experiment


Week6: Response to ”Theft And Artistry: Coldplay Beyoncé In India Spark Discussion On Appropriation”-Haoquan Wang (Chen)

This article mainly talks about that pop songs spark discussion on cultural appropriation. Actually we should view cultural appropriation critically. For positive aspect, cultural appropriation can do a great help to culture spread. “black musicians who played and sang on the album said they were happy with the collaboration in part because it had brought South African music to the global stage.” As the article says about “cultural colonialism”, a good appropriation can be a bridge that connect culture and the world.

But for the negative aspect, if the imitators are not so respectful to the culture, appropriation turns to bad copy or theft. It reminds me of Hip-Hop in China. Chinese Hip-Hop is immature. In business fields Hip-Hop is just a tool to make money but not a kind of culture. If we cannot be one hundred percent to respect and learn the culture, we will make a misunderstanding of the culture, in other words, it is disrespect.

Documentation Week 3 (Connor MacFadyen)

Connor MacFadyen 


Moisture Sensor:


Assembly of this circuit was relatively simple, we did, however, have a bit of trouble getting the LED to light up once the moisture level passed a certain threshold (sensorValue).  My partner and I had a lot of fun playing around with different levels of moisture: our fingers, a cup of water, etc.


What did you intend to assemble in the recitation exercise? If your sensor/actuator combination were to be used for pragmatic purposes, who would use it, why would they use it, and how could it be used?


During the recitation, my group decided to experiment with the moisture sensor. An actual way this device could be used other than the obvious implementations it could have in a farming setting would be to implement it into the drywall in residential areas. With a moisture sensor in the wall, residents would be able to detect any signs of water that might cause mold or mildew.


Can you identify your circuit with any device you interact within your daily life? How might your circuit be used to have a meaningful interaction?


A device with similar technology that we often use in daily life is a pH meter. By measuring the hydrogen-ion concentration in a solution, we can determine the acidity of said solution. pH meters have many applications, including determining If soil, for example, is suitable for farming.


How is code similar to following a recipe or tutorial?


Similar to a recipe, coding requires an input to create an output. By writing lines of code or adding a new ingredient to a dish, it’s difficult to determine the final product when analyzing step by step. For example, it’s difficult to determine the final output of an Arduino board after seeing only one line of code. In the same way, seeing “egg” as an ingredient doesn’t give much input to what dish is being made. Coding and cooking both have their own language, though they may be different. They both follow a sequence and a have a need for precision.



In Language of New Media, Manovich describes the influence of computers on new media. In what ways do you believe the computer influences our human behaviors?


What stands out to me the most about the role computers play in our daily lives is how fast they are advancing. In less than a generation, humans have moved from pong to virtual reality games on a wide scale. Though the technology of VR isn’t too advanced as of now, it’s very possible that by the end of this century there will be no need for communication in the physical world. Having smartphones and being able to communicate with people across the world on a device that fits in your palm is somewhat of a scary thing though. I believe humans are becoming too dependent on this technology, many of us can’t function properly and feel lost when we don’t have our phones with us. Face to face interaction is rapidly declining and is possible for declining birth rates in countries like Japan. The fun in life is found through struggle, but soon even the idea of work may be a thing of the past.


Week 2 Documentation (Connor MacFadyen)

Connor MacFadyen

Interaction Lab

September 20, 2018


Circuit 1: Fade (http://www.arduino.cc/en/Tutorial/Fade)

Circuit 1, being the easiest of three projects we did, was relatively simple to assemble. Since the code was already created for us, our group had minimal trouble with this circuit – we achieved the desired result of the LED ranging from fully lit to completely dark.


Circuit 2: Melody (http://www.arduino.cc/en/Tutorial/Tone)


The second circuit also had a relatively simple assembly. Our group did struggle a little bit however with figuring out which way the tone maker should be placed. Since there were no obvious markings that we saw at first, we had to experiment with it for a while until we saw the “+” symbol on the bottom. After that however, the code being provided made the rest of this circuit fairly simple.  


Circuit 3: Speed Game (https://www.tinkercad.com/things/9reyJ6uTVoY-race-the-led/editel?sharecode=qMMfF_Cz3H5x-Esm7jx3SWGdZiYYLh864n9laKlOxxc=)


Compared to the previous 2, circuit 3 required a lot more work assembly wise. Since our group has little to no prior experience with Arduino, we struggled with this circuit in some sense of the word. We had trouble with the power cords being in the wrong spot and assembling it backwards the first time. The other thing that made us confused was that one of our buttons seemed to be either malfunctioning or not plugged in enough. Once we figured that out however and reassembled it the right way, we were able to successfully play the game.


Reflect on different interactions with technologies that you have observed in your daily life. Pick a few of these and write down your own definition of interaction based on your observations.

  • The device I use the most besides my smartphone is my laptop. An interaction that I find interesting is Airdrop. Though the actual science behind it is more complicated than it seems, it takes the push of a button from a user to transfer files, photos, etc. As such, I believe “interaction” to be defined as the way a particular thing interacts with the field around it, whether it be radio, interactive, etc.


During the assembly of the circuits, we used many electronic components as inputs and outputs. Which of these components do you recognize in the circuit?

  • Having no prior experience with Arduino, it was interesting to see the processing that occurs with very minimal input from the user. The buttons that we used in the third activity game was the only time that I saw input from the user besides the initial assembly.


If you have 100000 LEDs of any brightness and color at your disposal, what would you make and where would you put it?

  • With 100000 LEDs, I would split them up into groups of 10000 and use them to create a banner promoting myself. With 10 of these, I would position them in the 10 most populated/urban cities around the world at an attraction that draws in the most profit. For example, in Shanghai, I would have it positioned maybe on top of Pearl Tower or around the Bund in general.


Which reflections about the nature of interaction can you make about the Figure I.1 in the Physical Computing reading?

  • I found the recent development in computers being able to detect and react to senses previously limited to living things very interesting. As our technology continues to advance as a society, I eagerly look forward to the improvements we will make.


Week 1 Documentation (Connor MacFadyen)

Make-up (transfer)

Date: October 17, 2018


  • 1 * Breadboard: a platform for your project
  • 1 * LM7805 Voltage Regulator: maintains voltage
  • 1 * Buzzer: speaker
  • 1 * Push-Button Switch: on/off switch
  • 1 * 220-ohm Resistor: control the flow of current
  • 1 * LED: light
  • 1 * 100 nF (0.1uF) Capacitor: stores energy from conductors
  • 1 * 10K ohm Variable Resistor (Potentiometer): measures electric potential
  • 1 * 12 volt power supply
  • 1 * Barrel Jack: power
  • Jumper Cables: make everything work

Circuit 1: Door Bell

The first circuit was simple to construct and went very smoothly. Since I have been in the class for a while now and feel comfortable using Arduino, I enjoyed finishing this circuit quickly, as opposed to having no idea what was going on two weeks ago.

Circuit 2: Lamp

This second circuit was initially confusing because of the introduction of the resistor. I wasn’t sure which pins to plug into at first and I wasn’t sure what was causing the problem – after reconstruction, I was able to get it to work properly.

Circuit 3: Dimmable Lamp

Though the most complex of the three circuits, I was able to successfully complete this circuit upon initial construction. The only difficulty encountered was understanding the diagram since the ones we’ve changed to have a picture of the pins.

Question 1:

(After reading The Art of Interactive Design, do you think that the circuits you built today include interactivity? Please explain your answer.)

A step up from simple cause and effect, interaction requires two components. One (input), must do something that triggers a reaction from two (output). All three of this week’s circuits demonstrated a clear example of interaction, though one more than the others. Circuit three not only required interaction on a technological level, but also required a third – initial – input from a user.

Question 2:

How can Interaction Design and Physical Computing be used to create Interactive Art? You can reference Zack Lieberman’s video or any other artist that you know .

Art is subject to opinion and expression can be seen in many ways. In recent decades a new form of art has appeared through the technological scene. A prime example of this is Photoshop, allowing users to create and explore their interests through a computer screen and often a drawing tablet. Manipulation plays a huge role in interactive art, allowing users to change natural elements in a way that hasn’t been done before. Rather than posting an ad in a newspaper, interaction design allows creators to pick a target audience much easier and reach those users in a more precise fashion.

Documentation 5

In this recitation, we did not use any Arduino materials. There were 3 steps on this recitation for us to do. The first step for us to create a model using the app called the Tinker CAD. Tinker CAD is what people use to design for 3D printings. I have never used this app before so it was very challenging for me to make something that might have taken only few minutes for people who knew how to make them. I made the T-shirt by myself using the tools, grouping, and adjusting the shape, but it was not possible for me to make a shape of a human. So I had to download a file from https://www.thingiverse.com. But I think I was able to show what I wanted to show in the Tinker CAD.

Once I have finished designing my project in Tinker CAD, I had to use Adobe Illustrator to make it look more artistic. As shown in the picture above, all the grid was showing on my Tinker CAD. By using Adobe Illustrator I have solved that problem. It is true that having too much word in our poster is not really what people want to see, but for our project it was necessary since we are making a project for 100 years later. 

After my designing again using the Adobe Illustrator, I made a poster for my project. Even though my poster had a lot of word, it is clearly explained the main claim that our shirt will help avoid having to select the size of the T-shirt and also that we think about future convenience.

Response to Ecstasy of Influence — Emily Yip (Chen)

Personally, I had always found plagiarism tricky. Throughout the countless academic integrity workshops or plagiarism spiels I have endured, I have always had an unanswered question lingering in the back of my head — how do I know for sure that I’m not plagiarizing this sentence with a near infinite amount of sources online? How do I form a sentence that is 100% mine? (This is especially tricky now that paraphrasing is even counted as plagiarizing if caught un-cited.) Branching off into unacademic plagiarism — if a famous photo of a basket of fruit arises, does that mean that I am never allowed to take a photo of a basket of fruit and share it without citing it? Lethem seems to have answered my question in this article by defining the difference between influence and plagiarism. Influence is the building of emotion, ideas, and creativity. We progress as a society through influence and use the past as a means to improve.  Larger, more vague ideas such as “making the familiar strange”  , which is often seen in art, challenges the creativity of individuals and allows the branching of different perceptions. Lethem proves that we as a society are positively influenced by influence and negatively influenced by plagiarism. The places that each individual takes with the building of influence branches off one another, creating a pool of ideas and encouraging growth.

Cosmic Consciousness // Konrad Krawczyk

Since the ancient times – and across different cultures, art has been intertwined with religion, spirituality, and human aspiration to the higher dimension. In ancient Greece, art was closely associated with worship of divine entities, and it gave inspiration to groundbreaking achievements in many areas of expression. This relationship, however, has not been consistent across cultures – and sometimes it was an outright conflict. In more puritanical religious communities art was often considered a profane advance of fallible human skill into the perfect beauty of God.

Nevertheless, the pursuit of the sublime is one of the main purposes of art, whether or not the art itself draws from religious or irreligious communities.


Rothko Chapel – Texas

This is, in my opinion, the underlying pursuit that links not only the synaesthetic experiences of Brakhage, Belson, and the Whitneys, but also the larger artistic context of the mid-20th century, including abstract art, abstract expressionism, speculative fiction, and more. The artists of that period rejected expression of ephemeral feelings and opted for radically non-symbolic concepts – an attempt to distill the ultimate art form that would bring the viewer to an otherworldly, almost “divine” (not necessarily religious!) state.

This level of abstraction is apparent in the work of Whitneys, who utilised the “distance between the viewer and the art object”. The intricate relationships between musical and visual structure of their films signifies the possibility of synthetic, almost psychedelic experiences for the viewers. This is accomplished in the work of Brakhage and Belson as well, although with different aesthetic methods – using less of the “sacred geometry” and more organic shapes that cannot be clearly defined.

The Church nightclub, Denver

It is difficult to define the relationship between these early sound-vision experiments and the modern forms of entertainment, such as mass concerts, festivals and rave parties. Many of the processes that enabled that, such as the decline of religion or advances in digital technology, happened at roughly the same time. However, there’s an interesting aesthetic link. Abstract films and sound-vision shows are often using bright visuals and strobe-light effects within a relatively dark background. This is very similar to how modern dance parties, bars and clubs are creating their atmospheres. These seem like places where people socialise, but many of us come there more to dissociate, to lose control, to “leave our bodies” and encounter an almost spiritual (and often far from religious) experience.

Although abstract film became less of a groundbreaking art practice, it paved the new way for pursuit of elevated experiences through immersion in subjective realms – be it in cinemas, clubs, festivals, or more recently virtual reality.

Research Project (Connor MacFadyen)

Step 1: Make a 3D model

Using Tinker CAD, the first step during this recitation was to create a 3D model of our design using basic shapes within the program. Being my first time using Tinker CAD I struggled at first with the design until someone showed me that I could upload files straight from their website. With this in mind, I was able to represent a human figure more accurately which greatly contributed to the final outcome of this stage.

Step 2: Edit the 3D model in Illustrator

After the initial design phase was completed, I uploaded my Tinker CAD design into Adobe Illustrator to clean up the model a bit. Removing the grid and filling in the background, I decided that a black and white poster would look best for what I was trying to represent. I played around with the other options but they seemed a bit weird, one model being a different shade than the other, etc. The only problem I encountered during this stage was a white hole that was formed against a black background when uploading into Illustrator. For some reason, I wasn’t able to paint or edit the layer in any way but received help in creating a new layer with a black patch in that area, filling it in when viewed on top of each other.

Step 3: Design the advertisement

For my poster, I wanted to let the product design speak for itself so I decided to take a more minimalistic approach to the finished advertisement. Featuring a simple, clean model of what my product does, a brand name and a small slogan, it gets the point across without distracting the consumer. One thing that I think could be improved during this stage would maybe be featuring a small-print section with the actual function of the product, as it may be hard to deduce from a simple image alone.