All posts filed under “Ars Electronica

Prix Ars Electronica 2010

As per last year, Here are the winners and selection for the Interactive Arts category at Prix Ars Electronica 2010 just announced.

A big congratulations to the Eyewriter team, a very excellent project & much deserved win.

I am very happy that my Hand from Above has received an honorary mention.

Golden Nica


The EyeWriter / Zach Lieberman (US), James Powderly (US), Tony Quan (US), Evan Roth (US), Chris Sugrue (US) and Theo Watson (UK)

“Inspired by the life of Tony Quan, a graffiti artist who was diagnosed with the degenerative nerve disorder ALS in 2003, Zach Lieberman, James Powderly, Evan Roth, Chris Sugure and Theo Watson developed “EyeWriter.” A reasonably-priced eye tracking system and the software that runs it make it possible to draw on a computer screen just by moving ones eyes. This gives people who have contracted a neuromuscular disease—some of whom are completely paralyzed—a way to express their creativity in spite of their condition. A making of feature about EyeWriter is online at vimeo“.

Awards of Distinction

Chorus / United Visual Artists (UK)
“Chorus” is a sound & light performance that is intensely physical and fleeting at the same time. Pendulums hanging from the installation space’s ceiling glow and emit noises as they swing back and forth, producing arcs of white light and strange sounds.

Talking Doors
Talking Doors / Julijonas Urbonas (LT)
In 2009, five doors to well-known public buildings in Lithuania’s capital Vilnius were transformed into interactive installations. Equipped with electronic devices, the doors became a portal to Lithuania’s Democracy Index, a musical instrument, a kinetic sculpture and even the source of an earthquake. “Talking Doors” ultimately proved to be not only the materialization of symbolic concepts but also a peculiar experiment that evoked a whole series of curious events.

Honorary Mentions

Interactivos? / Medialab-Prado (ES)

Framework f5x5x5
Framework f5x5x5 / LAb[au]

Buscando Al Sr. Goodbar
Buscando al Sr. Goodbar / Michelle Teran (CA)

(no urls available. anyone?)
i3DG / Jitsuro Mase , Tom Nagae (JP) / DIRECTIONS, Inc.

You&Me-isms / part I / Boris Petrovsky (DE)

TaxiLink / Lila Chitayat, Alon Chitayat, Tal Chalosin (IL)

HOME / Hee-Seon Kim (KR)

Living Light
Living Light / The Living (David Benjamin (US), Soo-In Yang (KR))

Mobile Crash
Mobile Crash / Lucas Bambozzi (BR) with the kind help from Paloma Oliveira, Rocardo Palmieri, Roger Sodré and Lucas Gervilla

Whispering Table
Tischgeflüster — Whispering Table / TheGreenEyl 2009 (Willy Sengewald, Dominik Schumacher, Gunnar Green (DE), Frédéric Eyl (FR))

Flower / Jenova Chen (US) / thatgamecompany, LLC

Hand from Above
Hand from Above / Chris O’Shea (UK)

Chapter I: The Discovery
Chapter I: The Discovery, Felix Luque Sanchez (ES)

Prix Ars Electronica 2009

Here are the winners and selection for the Interactive Arts category at Prix Ars Electronica 2009

Golden Nica

Nemo Observatorium
Nemo Observatorium
Lawrence Malstaf (BE) -> watch video

Awards of Distinction

when laughter trips at the threshold of the divine
when laughter trips at the threshold of the divine
Osman Khan, Kim Beck (US)

default to public
Jens Wunderling
default to public

Honorary Mentions

Red Psi Donkey
Red Psi Donkey
Jens Brand (DE)

rAndom International (Stuart Wood (UK), Florian Ortkrass , Hannes Koch (DE)) & Chris O‘Shea (UK)

Perpetual Storytelling Apparatus
Perpetual Storytelling Apparatus
Benjamin Maus, Julius von Bismarck (DE)

Jammer Horn
Jammer Horn
Willy Sengewald

CONNECT – feedback-driven sculpture
Andreas Muxel (AT)

Call Cutta in a box
Call Cutta in a box
Helgard Haug, Daniel Wetzel, Stefan Kaegi (DE)

Opera Calling
Opera Calling
!Mediengruppe Bitnik (CH) and Sven König (DE)

Double-Taker (Snout)
Golan Levin with Lawrence Hayhurst, Steven Benders and Fannie White (US)

Future Kiss
Future Kiss
Lenka Klimesova (CZ)

The Physical Value of Sound
The Physical Value of Sound
Yuri Suzuki (JP)

In the Line of Sight
In the Line of Sight
Daniel Sauter, Fabian Winkler (DE/US)

Watch Me
Watch Me!
Yasushi Noguchi, Hideyuki Ando (JP)

Arduino Mini

Arduino Mini & USB

On sale for the first time at the Ars Electronica Electrolobby workshops, the Arduino mini is a much smaller version of its older brother. Ideal for plugging straight into breadboards & for projects with limited space, the Arduino mini also has twice as much memory for your code. Saving space by using a seprate USB adapter, code can loaded on to the board, then remove the loader to save space. Buy the mini for 25 euros and USB adapter for 15 euros (excluding tax & shipping). I bought mine at the workshop, photo above is size comparison with older Arduino that I made in the previous workshop.

Arduino Mini

More from Ars Electronica.

openFrameWorks at Ars Electronica


Most of my time at Ars Electronica was spent in the Electrolobby, taking part in the OpenFrameWorks workshop, run by Zach Lieberman & Henrik Wrangel.

“OpenFrameWorks, is a new open source, cross platform, c++ library, which was designed by Zachary Lieberman (US) to make programming in c++ for students accessible and easy. In it, the developers wrap several different libraries like opengl for graphics, quicktime for movie playing and capturing, and free type for font rendering, into a convenient package in order to create a simple, intuitive framework for creating projects using c++. It is designed to work in freely available compilers, and will run under any of the current operating systems”.

I am new to C++, but have used many computer vision applications in the past, from Director Xtras, Eyesweb, Jitter etc. I was keen to understand the depths of computer vision, exactly how these applications analysed video and create my own code for better control.

I had only attended the workshop for two days, yet OpenFrameWorks was quite easy to use, once you get started and get your head around the C++ syntax & structures. The image above shows the debug mode in the program I created. My aim was to study motion, and work out direction of movement. The lower left square shows the live video, and right of this a reference frame for background subtraction. I then created a difference image (what has changed between the background and live video), and then any movement above a threshold. The top left image is a motion history, fading out over time. By analysing this data, it is possible to study every pixel (and those around it) and work out the direction of movement using a gradient. The top right is a vector field, showing the direction and magnitude of each pixel, although my volunteer is standing quite still here. From this I made a simple demo of snow falling particles that got displaced from the vector data.

Overall OpenFrameWorks was easy to use, and even in its early state, I can see potential for this becoming what Processing is to Java, an easier entry point for those wishing to learn c++. No website for OFW just yet, but will update this post when there is

OpenFrameWorks Demo


More from Ars Electronica
Electrolobby workshop photos.

Aquaplay, a bubble display

So the winners of the Ars Electronica Prix have been announced. The winner of the [next idea] caught my attention:

“‘Aquaplay’ is an ambitious application for displays; it is based on air bubbles rising through a special fluid. This technology constitutes a completely novel idea and a dramatic contrast to pixel graphics”. (congrats to Himanshu Khatri for winning)

I have posted a roundup of bubble displays on Pixelsumo before, so I’d be interested to see which direction this project takes.

Aquaplay will be a large installation, with a matrix of release valves (creating a 3d image) and a touch surface for user input.

Concept image:

Prototype photo:

There are three main challenges I think will need to be overcome; the weight of the water on that scale, the user input around a wrapped surface and viewing text from multiple angles. Good luck Himanshu. Expect a report on the final piece in September.