This course challenges students to combine three technologies – object-oriented programming, 3D modeling and digital fabrication – toward making an everyday data object. Some examples of everyday data objects include an ashtray whose shape is derived from the number of lung-cancer related deaths per year, a drinking glass whose profile is based upon the rate of the world’s clean water depletion, a blush compact sculpted to show the growing number of women in parliament. Classes will be formatted either as workshops, individual reviews or presentations.

– Data Sources : CSV / XML / Kinect
– 3D data visualization: Processing / Python / RhinoPython
– 3D modeling: Rhino
– Mesh Management: Cloudmesh Beta / Netfebb / Meshlab
– Rendering and Animation: VRay (Maya)

Digital Fabrication Tools
– MakerBot
– Objet Connex500 3D Polymer Printer
– Z Corporation ZPrinter 650 3D Powder Printer

Workshop Tutorial : Technical Experiments
During the tutorial workshop, the instructor will lead students through examples demonstrating the capabilities and applications for various new digital toolsets that can be employed toward creating an everyday data object. This hands-on environment encourages each student to find creative expression through a new technological medium through celebrating it’s idiosyncrasies.

Critique: Presentations and Reviews
The conceptual critique consists of individual reviews and three student presentations: concept, midterm and final. Each presentation will be followed by an open critique; guest critics will be invited to attend the midterm and final reviews. Individual reviews will take place before midterm and final presentations where class time will be divided into equal slots for one-on-one student-instructor meetings. Critiques are staged to be communal spaces for developing concepts into strategies for navigating through the new technologies explored.

Concept Driven / Technology Driven
Sculpting Data into Everyday Objects is designed, on the one hand, as creative experimentation with technical tools, and on the other hand, as exercise in critical thinking and conceptual strategy. The ultimate goal of this course for each student, in attempting to converge these two processes, to develop a dual attitude towards technology that will empower them to master any new tool as an expressive medium.