Communicating freely


Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

Amazing art (powered by Free Software)

Monday, July 16th, 2007

I recently saw an amazing Free Software-powered art project in Z├╝rich.

This is amazing...these wires are sending signals to rat cells! 

Basically it’s  a series of sensors that connect (via the Internet) with a cybernetic chip containing living cell tissue in a lab.  When people touch the poles they send a signal to individual cells.  These cells return a signal, and that causes noise to come out of a speaker just above the pole.  You can even train each cell to react in a different way.

Close to blade runner

I’ve really never seen anything like this before.  The most amazing thing is that the guys who build this engineered the sound system on a FPGA and built almost everything using Free Software.  I even saw that some circuit boards they had designed were released as copyleft.  The only non-Free software is a bitstream loader for the FPGA.

Kudos to them!

(The pictures here are from the Neuroom website, and reproduced with permission).