All posts by Adam Nagy

Characteristics — the underlying human principle

There is always an underlying human aspect behind everything we create. We can name any technological advancement, and there will always be a corresponding element from human nature. These tools are often better at these things that humans by nature. Behind the wheel is movement. Behind the hammer is strength. Behind the gun is the ability to kill or hunt.

Computers first appeared when humans realized that a machine can do complicated calculations for them effortlessly and easily. It did not meant that the machine would think instead of them — it followed the instructions of a human to solve a problem that humans were facing. But as Lev Manovich mentioned in his book, even the first of these computers were able to process images (Jacquard’s loom using punch cards to weave). This ability to process images was the key for communications between humans through the computer.

Human tools are usually better at what humans do without them, that is why they are made in the first place. Are computers better at communication then us?

In some aspects, they are not. Text messages cannot carry more emotions than the sender has put into them. Emails are only letters displayed on a computer screen. It seems like that without images, computers are simply converting the written form of language. Indeed, they are more comprehensible than many people’s handwritings, but wouldn’t that personal touch a takeaway from communication?

But using only text can cause some confusion (I feel like this illustrates my point the best).

However, if we add images, everything changes. Even in journalism, it is well known that adding pictures to articles clears up their meanings. Computers are able to do much more than just displaying images. With their use, we can create, edit, publish and replicate these images. Using the internet, we are able to access online repositories and even search by only using the pictures.

A pioneer:


The first appearance of images were the smileys, which were proposed as early as 1982.

The era of social media made way to this type of communication. Not only are we using the smiley in its written format, we are using the picture form with many permutations.

We use them everyday in our internet conversations — and they make the way we express ourselves clearer and more comprehensive.

If we are going to use internet text as a mean of communication on a daily basis, we need images to make our messages easier to understand. To sustain that bridge and computational media provide us with these tools. Snapchat, Facebook messenger and Skype are all devices that help us connect to people in a great distance or cultural boundaries. And we are still at the beginning.

Final Post

Final Project 1.1

My final project is an instrument. The player can use the sounds of nature and the sounds of a guitar, which are played by pressing the keys ASDF and JKL; on the keyboard. QWER and UOIP are able to turn on and off the reverb.


(working title)

The intention of the project is to provide a relaxing environment in our modern lives. This life has lost all the background sounds that the environment that human beings evolved from. The sound of wind, trees, rain and thunder are muted by the sounds of traffic and other noises of the city.

This instrument is trying to attempt to use the sounds of a man made instrument (the guitar) and the sounds of nature: the wind, the rain, birds and thunder.

The visuals were inspired by the painting Kalinda of SOHAN QADRI.

Kalinda is a Hindi name meaning “Sun”. 

I gave some thought to the colors of the piece and I decided that there will be two gradients: one is the color of the night and daytime sky. When the sound is played, the amplitude controls the gradient of the outer squares to yellow; the color of the sun.

The Code can be found here: (there are many separate JavaScript files.)

Some Progress!

My final project is becoming clearer and clear: I am going to make a relaxing instrument. I will use natural sounds and the sounds of a single guitar. The inspiration for the guitar: Her. The film tells the story of people who become isolated and lonely, and they have to rely on technology.

The instrument that I am creating will help people to get the sounds of nature whenever they need them. Headphones are necessary for the full immersion into the experience.





My Project.

For “Organized”, I decided to recreate an existing work of Art by Sohan Qandri.



“Artist, poet and Tantric guru Sohan Qadri (1932-2011) is one of the only internationally acclaimed artists deeply engaged with spirituality. Qadri abandoned representation early on in his long career, incorporating Tantric symbolism and philosophy into his vibrantly colored minimalist works. Born in India, he was initiated into yogic practice at age seven. In 1965, he left India and began a series of travels that took him to East Africa, North America, Paris and Zurich.”

— from the gallery’s website.



Brainstorming 4 Final Project

For my final project I would like to make something like this:

This game was made for Flash, and it lets you to make Punk music just by inserting clips into a timeline. My project would be a crossover of this music console and guitar hero: the user can play music with using the Arduino as an input:

  • pushing buttons would make guitar riffs play
  • a potentiometer would crank up the volume/overdrive
  • Solo button: random lead guitar riff over certain chords.
When Will The Bass Drop? (ft. Lil Jon) — Lonely Island

The genre and the actual implementation is subject to change.

Stupid Pet Trick — Let’s Disco!


As shown above, I have made a speaker that is controlled by the amount of light that it receives. Bonus: I have found the perfect filter on YouTube for my project!

Once again I am using phototransistors as analog inputs, one of them controls the pitch of the sound and the other the duration. This way we get an instrument that can be controlled with both hands of the user. It is interactive and it provides hours of fun, although the square wave form will quickly give the audience a headache.

Led sequence with light sensor

I was using the light sensor (phototransistor) for this project too.  When the sensor reads a light that is brighter than its previous surroundings, the LEDs start lighting up in sequence. This is an Arduino, who is happy about the light, and can’t wait for the winter to end. Sorry Mr Stark. It also warns the user to using proper protection against the sun.

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Light detector

Have you ever found yourself too lazy to reach for the switch to turn on a lamp? Ever needed an indicator that the sun has already set? Or just wanted to check if your flashlight was on? Introducing a lamp that switches itself on when the light is low in its surroundings.

After thinking hard what could be a switch that doesn’t need hands to switch itself on or off, I have came across the phototransistors in my Arduino Starter Kit and had a “Eureka!” moment with them. They can detect the change in light and don’t require touch to switch on or off.

At least on paper. Due to the characteristic of the phototransistor, the switch only happens in total darkness and during exposure to direct light. But it can easily detect your flashlight if you are pointing at the sensor from point blank.

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