BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE, HERE ARE THE ANSWERS TO LAST WEEK’S CONTEST:
- My visa is expiring – MERCHE
- I watched Madonna – LIA
- I am addicted to Letterpress – GENEVIEVE
- I’m growing (trying to grow) a moustache – ANTONIUS
- I never put on pants the whole week NYU was closed – MIMI
And the winner is: Sara Al-Bassam, who got 3 out of 5 (Merche is not growing a moustache, btw)!!! You may claim your prize in the resident’s office! (We don’t know what it is yet)
I disappointed Nancy by forgetting to wear a bowtie and top hat while emceeing our First Annual Thesis Showdown this past Saturday, December the 1st. But the students sure didn’t disappoint. Great job, everyone! The IAC is still not fully operational, but it’s always fun to go there and work with my team. I wrote this quick tutorial on how to make apps for the Windows 8 Store with Processing JS. I’d love some feedback — one MS fanboy already pointed out that MS uses different pointer and gesture events for Win 8 Apps and IE 10, so it needs some work. While doing research, I noticed KPCB released their latest 2012 trends presentation. Supposedly there are 6X more android users than iOS users, but check out this article on Android Engagement that questions those numbers. How come most mobile web traffic come from iOS users? What a mystery.
There’s a great article in the NY Times on how deaf students and scientists have taken the sign language lexicon into their own hands by disseminating signs of scientific terms over the internet, with the hope of standardizing them in a democratic way. And the interactive feature that comes with it is pure hypnotic bliss, thanks to Bloomberg’s ASL interpreter Lydia Callis.
I’ve helped a lot of people with illustrator and sewing this past month. Speaking of sewing, note to self: invest in Tweed and Tartan. Because the Chanel Métiers d’Art collection hands down wins the Pre-Fall 2013 season. Karl Lagerfeld, you can do no wrong. Even if you say Alexander Wang is the perfect replacement for Balenciaga’s outgoing creative director Nicolas Ghesquière. Not because he’s a good designer but because his parents are Asian and clothes are made in Asia. That’s just ridiculous. Everybody knows sweatshops exist in NYC too. Especially Alexander Wang. But on a more upbeat fashion note, check out these 1963 photos of Women in bubbles in Paris by Melvin Sokolsky for Harper’s Bazaar.
Oh, and how were your Thanksgivings? I spent mine in Louisville, Kentucky, with some good friends. And fortunate for me, Lou Nasti, whose studio the puppets class visited, had recently opened an animatronic show at the Galt House Hotel. Thanks to my handy dandy press pass, I got a VIP tour.
LA for Thanksgiving was warm and sunny! Since then it’s been office hours, office hours, and more office hours. It’s incredible how far everyone has come this semester. Looking forward to the Winter Show and seeing everyone’s projects in their finest form. Also, cant wait for the NIME show. Here’s one of my favorite NIME projects from last year, Jack Kalish’s “Sound Affects”.
Last Saturday’s “Thesis OMP-Gong Show” + “Nothing to Something Workshop” Day went really well. Much love to Antonius for MC’ing the show and Nick Yulman for his Automated-Gong, aka the Most Robust Stupid Pet Trick Project Ever Built.
My work at Vimeo is getting some internal traction, which I’m happy about. Current plan is to couple my project, a potential precursor to a Vimeo Labs, with the launch of their new API in the Spring.
Went to Carlin Wragg & Anna Pinkas’s Stroywalks App Launch Event Thursday night at the Eldridge Street Temple, great to see so many faces from ITP Class of 2012. Big congrats to the amazing team of Anna, Carlin, Chien, and our very own residents Lia and Merche, for their work on the project, it’s free in the App Store, check it out.
While we’re doing Class of 2012 shout outs, Bobby Genalo, launched PlaySomething.org last week with his project Commute, a piece he created while at ITP. And congrats to Toby Schachman for becoming an Eyebeam 2013 OpenArt Fellow. Meanwhile, Steve and I are considering building an Augmented Reality App for boxes of chocolate – “Never bite into the wrong piece again!” Yay? Nay?
And on the business front, entrepreneur Vibhu Norby wrote a thoughtful blogpost explaining his transition from a Mobile-First Philosophy to a Web-First one. VC Fred Wilson responded with a post tiled Rethinking Mobile First.
Thesis! Winter Show! End of the Semester! I spent a wonderfully quiet Thanksgiving break in Cleveland, but was happy to come back to the hecticness of both ITP and New York during the holidays. I was happy to help with the Thesis presentations (having the rather passive opportunity to just cue slides) and greatly enjoyed running through the brainstorming sessions. Overall I was quite impressed with both the range and depth of upcoming Thesis projects.
In addition to office hours, I’ve been back working hard on the Lasersaur troubleshooting, installing the chiller system, FIRING IT, and putting the optics system in place. Still a number of tests / questions to be answered about filtration and procedure, but early next semester I will be looking for interested parties to learn how the laser works.
Merche and I have also been assisting with a Window Construction class at FIT, helping students there with building interactive components for well crafted window holiday displays.
The Puppets and Performing object Class is having it’s final show this Wednesday evening at 9pm! Don’t miss it. Robots! Mice! Devils! Dragons! something for everyone. To get excited about puppets: watch NPH’s new puppet dreams and read about Guignol, the french puppet who inadvertently helped inspire modern shock and awe magic shows.
My resident notes would be nothing without something kinetic, so here is an example of a mechanical singing bird box. GOOD LUCK Everyone with your final show preparations, whatever that show may be.
It’s strange to realize that the Winter show is upon us and the semester is almost over. The past few weeks have definitely flown by. I headed up to Boston for Thanksgiving, which was great, especially since I got to spend some quality time with my goddaughter. Back at ITP, the Thesis Saturday kickoff got me excited for all the projects the second years will be focusing on in the months to come.
I’ve been helping Midori and Nancy organize the WE Festival that will be happening the 22-23rd of January at ITP. Recent ITP Alum Lily Sjzanberg will be coming back to ITP to talk about developing her thesis project GAGE into a business. There are lots of other great speakers who will be there so apply if you’re interested in attending.
Mimi, Antonius and I have been helping Dan Shiffman and his students for their end of the semester Big Screens dress rehearsal (#mediumscreens), not to be confused with the actual Big Screens show at the IAC at a TBD date in 2013. We mounted 6 projectors in the lounge area, and are projecting onto some seamless paper, graciously procured by DanO. I’m pretty impressed how the class has made the best out of a less-than-ideal situation, and I’m looking forward to seeing where their projects are tonight.
Over at the IAC, this week I presented proposals for content I’ll be creating for the video wall once it’s back online. I got the go-ahead to move forward on some live video pieces so that’s nice. To achieve a high frame rate across all those pixels I’m getting my feet wet with shaders so the GPU can do the heavy lifting. I’m sitting in on Patrick Hebron’s Art of Graphics Programming class, and this week he went over a shader that computes Conway’s Game of Life. Another great shader resource I’ll be following as he develops it is Toby Schachman’s (ITP’12) interactive book about GPU programming. He just received an Eyebeam Open Art fellowship for the project so I’m excited to see it take shape!
Yesterday started with a happy surprise, as the iOS app I had been developing for weeks just got approved in the App Store. Just in time for the launch, too! I initially freaked out because it was listed under my birth name, Anna, and no one has called me that since my high school teachers and it just brought back scary memories. Anyway, the app is called Storywalks at Eldridge St, and its a site-specific app for the Eldridge St Synagogue. The project was started by ITP alums Anna Pinkas and Carlin Wragg as a class project for ITP. It eventually spawned a successful Kickstarter campaign.
The music was done by fellow resident Merche B. (see below) with audio engineering by Ryan Billia. It was awesome working with an all-girl tech team, too. A good number of our programming meetings were held in fancy bakeries surrounded by cupcakes and other frivolously decorated pastries. And there was giggling — a lot of giggling.
Storywalks was written in OpenFrameworks for iOS, with a small dose of Objective-C — mostly for accessing iphone-specific functionality. Chien and I are about to upload version 1.1, which will play nicer with iOS 6 and contains some minor bug fixes that didn’t make it to the first release.
Right before Thanksgiving, I worked with Jennings, Reed + Rader to shoot a whole-day event for Victoria’s Secret in Herald Square — basically shooting the fans with the super-hot VS Angels and then adding some digital angel wings. I did some fun stuff with OpenFrameworks, the Canon SDK, and ofxGreenScreen to automate the processing of the photos and make it ready for auto-uploading on the web. The shoot was fun if a little bizarre — pretty ladies, happy fans, lots of bras, lots of panties.
We hosted Thanksgiving in our home this year, which was an epic event involving lots of marathon cooking. I, being a nincompoop in the kitchen, was put in charge of the Tofurky.
Today I joined Midori and DanO for a group interview for new applicants. It was really interesting, if not surreal. It would have been hard for me to imagine as a nervous, quiet applicant, sitting in that room in 2009, what sort of weird adventures I would have in the years since I got accepted. I am grateful indeed.
If you are interested in learning openFrameworks, here’s a treat: Jeff Crouse has the code from a class he teaches at Parson’s up on Github. Lots of stuff there about particles and working with PVectors (some great translations of Dan’s Nature of Code stuff into OF) and other things like openCV, shaders, and playing with pixels. It’s a great repository. Jeff is also reworking a lot of his old tutorials, and already has one up about the mysterious pointer.
I also found this great add-on from James George that you can use to blend two or more projectors together. Awesome if you want to project on a large wall, a weirdly shaped space, or just have Big Screens envy.
Lastly, I love dumplings. I had dumplings last night for dinner, and I had them again for lunch today. If you go on this great Dumpling Tour this week (and I know its great because I’ve done it), proceeds go to folks still recovering from Sandy.
It was quite an interesting experience sharing a vegetarian sandwich and a beer as my Thanksgiving dinner, with a provisional and unorthodox family of aprox 200 members, who decided to take that same flight New york – L.A. that day…
Once there I was it was mind-blowing visiting the Museum of Jurassic Technology and watching, among many other wonders, the work of Hagop Sandaldjian and his micro miniatures. Three years ago I could enjoy Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonder under the recommendation of Nancy Hechinger and since then I was waiting to visit that place… If you happen to be in LA this is a must!
It was my first time also swimming in the Pacific and swimming during the last days of November! And I had to hang upside down in different structures next to the sea for a videoclip I was working on with some band in Barcelona.
As Miss. Martinez also mentioned the App we have been working on is now in the App Store just in time for the launch party last Thursday…thank you so much to the ones that came!!! (or were there in spirit with us) . We had some special appearances..
On Wednesday I could listen to music through my teeth a very simple, yet very effective experiment by Aisen Caro, who was presenting in Dorkbot where, by they way, I could also enjoy the presentation of our talented Sean Sean McIntyre explaining the project “Double One Design: Autonomous Interactive Radio” .
In ITP there have been a lot of finals-helping sessions and arrangements for the NIME show happening tomorrow….I know these are busy days for students, but you should take a break to see that!
Thesis day I was unfortunately just half there containing a flu that made me crash after that for some days, so I hope I made some sense during the workshop session!! Second years made a great work presenting their proposals and it is going to be quite an experience witnessing how they evolve in the future months..
Finally a recommendation of a show: ANN HAMILTON: the event of a thread in Park Avenue Armory.
Office hours exploded in the last 2 weeks with everyone finishing up their finals. It’s been really great to watch everyone’s projects grow and evolve.
Thesis Day was a blast, but seriously exhausting! It was pretty awesome to absorb over 100 project proposals in just a couple of hours and the brainstorming session was animated and felt too short rather than too long.
We had a little too much fun making the credits for Medium Screens 2012 such that now we’re going to have to redesign a whole different set of credits for Big Screens 2013, but all for a good cause! Dan has a special talent for settings low expectations. Yet, Medium Screens came off amazingly smoothly given the amount of real prep time everyone’s had. But I must say the glue that held the evening together was the Antonius soundtrack.
Yesterday I managed to finally get out to see Louis Kahn’s FDR memorial on Roosevelt Island. http://www.fdrfourfreedomspark.org/
Anyhow, the pictures on the website don’t do it justice. It’s a poem written in texture and perspective, in what you see and what’s obscured, what’s open, what’s framed and what you need to seek out.
One incredibly detail is at the head of the monument which is shaped like a ship (echoing the shape of Roosevelt Island itself) there are large ponderous pillars to your right and left, standing shoulder to shoulder completely obscuring your view of the Manhattan and Queens skylines. The obvious effect of these pillars directs your attention forward to look south toward the Williamsburg Bridge and NY Harbor beyond. However, the pillars themselves are spaced approximately one-inch apart and the surface of the stone along the inside of the gap (which run 6 feet deep) is polished to a mirror-like state. As you approach it, you see a sliver of the Manhattan skyline through the gap and then you see it again reflected off the inner surface of the stone. The effect is all the more thrilling because all of the exterior surfaces of stone have been ground to a fine, matte texture that’s more white than gray, more powdery than smooth.
It was a perfectly cloudy, foggy day to visit, but I imagine the site is poignant in a different way in every kind of weather and largely undiscovered by tourists. Plus the elevated tram ride from 59th and 2nd over the East River is something fun to do all on its own.
Can’t wait for NIME tonight!
Being home in Philadelphia for Thanksgiving was pretty wonderful — my nephew Ezra was born on Thanksgiving night! We packed a Thanksgiving picnic basket for my sister Kait and brother in-law Geoff and brought it to the hospital. In other family news, my mom was on Jeopardy this week! Apparently she wears the same color eyebrow makeup as Alex Trebek. For practice, my dad programmed a Jeopardy game that pulls questions from an online database and uses a hacked usb numpad and pvc pipe for custom made buzzers. While I was in town, I also checked-out Dancing Around the Bride at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It’s a beautifully designed exhibit with live dance performances happening in the main gallery — highly recommended for Duchamp, Cage & Cunningham fans.
It has been a very busy couple of weeks helping people with P-Comp and ICM finals. I’ve seen a lot of interesting projects coming together and am looking forward to the Winter Show. Tuesday night we had a dress rehearsal for the NIME show and now I’m even more excited for Sunday’s show at Glasslands. A number of jaw dropping moments – prepare to be dazzled.
Thesis Saturday was great – I really enjoyed hearing about what everyone is thinking about doing and helping with brainstorming. I hope the mechanical gong timer I rigged up for the presentations didn’t traumatize anyone too mu -GOOOONG!!!!!!!!-.
I went back to my parents’ house for Thanksgiving and was digging through my old electronics and found my TI-83+ and a usb cable for it. I was feeling real smug about the unit conversion programs I wrote for it until I saw that someone has recreated Portal on the TI-83.
Thesis Saturday was great. I really enjoyed seeing what all the second years have been up to and what they are planning on working on next semester. All in the space of a little over 100 minutes. The application form I made seems to have worked pretty well for everyone (or you didn’t complain loud enough). For the rest of December and early part of January I’ll be working extra hard on completing the platform all you second years will be using for Thesis class.
Max Ogden finally figured out how to connect an Arduino to a Parrot AR.Drone 2.0: https://gist.github.com/4152815. At some point when I have some time I’m going to test this out. Which reminds me, I’m very excited to see what happens during next semester’s classes, the list looks real awesome. Speaking of next semester’s classes, James George just launched a kickstarter for an interactive documentary “exploring creativity through the lens of coding,” the project is called Clouds.
A friend of mine showed me this image of Chicago from the sky, from the west, the tree cover in that city is rather remarkable. I’ve always wanted to compare the average building height from Chicago to the average building height in New York City…if I could just find the dataset.
My good friend Joe Kloc wrote an article for the Paris Review about people who live on the streets, seemingly by choice, the article was also partially a review of the book Subways Are For Sleeping. I’m in my third year in New York City, during the first two the city was mainly just a medium I had to travel through between my apartment and school. This year I’ve been trying to pay attention more to the rest of the city.
This article was all over the blogs but I’ll put it here in case you missed it. Craig Mod writes a lot about publishing and its future on the internet. This article compares the publishing industry now to the car industry right before the oil crisis of the 70s.
Finally, if you’ve got some time to listen to a 40 minute video about programming languages check out this talk that Jeremy Ashkenas (creator of CoffeeScript and Backbone.js) gave comparing code to literature.