Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Simple Circuits

Two weeks ago I started my stretch as Artist-in-Residence in the Physics Department at Harvard.  So far, I've set up a studio in a "SciBox", a multipurpose classroom/lab, where I have an open door policy and welcome physics and engineering students, teachers and staff to wander in, see what I'm up to and engage in a dialog about art-science-creativity-innovation and where-how-when these matters collide.  

Circuit designed with Eagle software

Besides setting up my space, I've been taking a week long circuit building intensive where I've become acquainted with Eagle software to design circuitry, 

learned how to use a Roland MDX-20 milling machine, a vinyl cutter...

soldered LED's, resistors, buttons/switches, battery holders and a photo transmitter.  

It's child's play to what the 20 somethings are doing: micro controllers, microphones, flashing LED's and Arduino. But it's very exciting and opening up the possibility of adding electronics to kinetic sculpture.         

If you, or your 5 year old, are interested in building very simple "squishy" circuits, check out how to make conductive and insulating play dough here or watch AnnMarie Thomas's TED talk here.  And if you want more advanced stuff, go to Sparkfun here.

Stay tuned... I've begun a Machine Shop "Green" Training and have started using a vertical and horizontal band saw, along with the lathe.  I'm especially excited to have just bought bifocal magnifying safety glasses! Now I can actually kinda see the 1/1000ths of an inch that I am taking off.   


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