This week’s links worth checking out come from three wildly different sites. Covering circuit bending, some deep thoughts about devices and how we interact with them, and a classic teardown of an old card sorting machine. It’s quite an eclectic mix.
Circuit bending is the process of taking electronic devices (mostly older electronics devices such as Game Boys and Speak & Spells) and poking and prodding them to produce electronic music. This is an Art not a Science. Much of the music created by circuit bending is experimental.
Tom Coates The Shape of Things is a deep dive into the way we interact with technology. Originally given as a presentation during a conference in New Zealand this February, the transcript is worth spending some time reading and thinking about. He and many others believe that we need to change this relationship.
To me, it was still clear that [hardware devices] were going to be able to offer tremendous power to us all to control and understand the world around us, but there was little sense of how a normal person might harness or grab that power in comprehensible ways.
Coates attempts to chart the ways that we can hope to create understandable devices and technology, and imbue them with “enchantment.” This is an interesting read for anyone who is thinking about how we interact with devices and how difficult, at times, that interaction can be.
Ken Shirriff’s blog is widely shared for its interesting technical deep-dives into machines and electronic components. Recently, he turned his focus onto old card sorting machines common in the 1920s for accounting and inventory management. Shirriff’s deep investigation is always a pleasure to read. Sit back and enjoy a teardown that you don’t have to clean up.
Have a great weekend and make sure to share with us in the forums any cool links you find.