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Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

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Press Play: V

Press Play: V

We’ve just finished the fifth edition of the ‘Press Play’ workshop series — once again at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. It’s always a pleasure teaching hard working students, alongside hard working staff. The participants are M.Arch and M.Sc students, who did exceptional efforts for two weeks to deliver six brilliant projects. To change a bit from the previous workshops, each project is titled by just one letter, which reflects either the project’s geometry or narrative.

Project K
Adi Meyer, Keisuke Akiyama, Sirou (Zero) Peng, Sherif Tarabishy, Mingyang (Andy) Han

‘K’ is a project which addresses social-exclusion in the context of hyper-connectedness and social media. It speculates on the wearable technologies of the near future, from an Orwellian perspective. The wearable helmet has a distance sensing module which allows intimate conversations for only a brief period of time.

Project B
Anirudhan Iyengar, Hesham Hattab, Liang Yixiao, Chartini Skaltsari, Tina Zeng, Lian Xu

‘B’ is inspired by the theoretical work of Valentino Braitenberg and the ‘tortoises’ of Grey Walter. It is a light-seeking vehicle, with on-board USRF modules for obstacle avoidance. The playful design reminds us of the Tweenbots by Kacie Kinzer.

Project U
Shuhong (Nakia) Hao, Liquan (Leo) Liu, Jiasheng (Jessien) Huang, Yingchao (Cici) Li, Anastasia Katikaridi, Fatemeh Firouzabadi

‘U’ is a multi-player game inspired by Harry Beck’s schematic for the London Underground. The game is composed of a number of ‘circuits’ which light up when a hand is rapidly moved at the start position. From a technical perspective, the students made good use of the I2C protocol on the arduino platform – allowing for a network which can be easily scaled.

Project O
Xiaoxu (Amber) Sun, Wenjie (Joyce) Wu, Luca Giacolini, Silvia Ruada, Zigeng (Scott) Fang

‘O’ is a partially physical and partially digital machine, inspired by the wonderful designs of Rube Goldberg. The machine makes good use of the arduino – to – processing interface and the students developed code for optimising the data transfer between the two softwares.

Project W
Ioulia Marouda, Junxi (Derek) Preng, Qianhui (Lotus) Feng, Ching-Ju (Jeanne) Lee, Parul Jian

‘W’ is a shadow-puppetry project inspired by the Heider-Simmel demonstration. It develops a narrative using primitive geometries as ‘characters’. These characters are driven by two servos from a grasshopper sketch. The students developed code to optimise transfer of information between the two softwares.

Project L
Sini (Nana) Bian, Xue (Lyn) Chen, Samerah Mohamand, Martin Stacey, Xinwei Zhuang, Ishay Rosenthal

‘L’ is a compound pendulum driven by two motors. The project combines the erratic movement of compound pendulums, with high-fidelity control of stepper motors.

I would sincerely like to thank all the participants for their enthusiasm and hard work and my colleagues, without whom this workshop wouldn’t have taken place. A big thanks to our critics for their advice and to B-Made for providing their facilities for fabrication.

Until next time.

Tutors: William Bondin, Francois Mangion, Chris Leung, William Victor Camilleri
Support: Asha Di, Ava Aghakouchak, Maria Paneta