Camera: Noah Bartlett
"Autopsy" features a haptic interface that controls a media machine. Magnetism is used to trigger a gestural controller which in turns activates the rest of the installation. A rare earth magnet is attached to the controller. Another magnet is part of a hand held device. In the photo to the left you can see the "proper" orientation. When the device is held this way the magnets repel each other creating a tangible force field that can be pushed and shaped. As the user navigates and prods the force field the image on the screen pulsates sympathetically echoing the trajectory traced by the interaction.


image of a blob created with a live camera providing surface texture for a nurb surface The image on the screen is a three dimensional blob. The surface is "skinned" with medical imagery gleaned from the internet. The geometry of the blobs are generated by an intentionally convoluted process where the position of the hand held magnet relative to the magnet on the controller triggers different algorithms that set the wave machine and camera system in motion.
wave machine
The camera system is mounted on a rotational actuator which in turn is mounted on a linear actuator. The images from the camera are digitized and routed into software that creates the topography of the blob. While the camera can be rotated 360 degrees its main target is the wave machine underneath it. It scans the confused surface of the water which is accentuated by a lighting system that is also effected by the controller. The texture of the video causes the blob to pulse and vibrate in visceral paroxysms.
The controller's movements are triggered by the user's gestures. During the interaction the algorithms driving the controller oscillate between generating random motion and reacting to certain conditions with specific responses. Sometimes the controller responds predictably, sometimes it behaves chaotically. The sum of the controller's movement and the users gestures create the blobs. Thus the controller and user collaborate in the formation of the image.
The process used to construct Autopsy is akin to collaging and sampling. Bits of code, machine parts, images, data are harvested and then computers are used to kluge it together into media machines. Images are generated in a similar manner, for instance in " Autopsy" gesture is sampled into data, then translated into kinetic motion, that actuates a camera, whose image is digitized, then transposed to surface tension.