Technology separates us from nature, but does it need to? My focus will be using technology to encourage people back into relationships with nature. Three planned week-long explorations include: 1. A clock that determines local time of day from environmental factors (light, sound, movements) to promote a natural sense of timekeeping. 2. A personal weather station that detects and whimsically describes the current weather around your body, to counteract the industrialization of weather. 3. A structured method for taking a random walk in the woods, possibly using an assistive device to promote exploration & discovery. (Wilderness version of my ruleset for random walks in New York: faludi.com/random )
By using technology to encourage human relationships with nature, I hope to highlight that machines can encourage us to be *more* human and organic rather than slowly making people irrelevant. As a counterpoint to consuming industrialized time, weather and directions, we’ll obtain time from scratch, declare our own version of the weather and make systems to help us wander rather than simply arrive. I look forward to taking a few weeks far away from distractions and close to the organic inspirations that drive my best work.
Robert Faludi was the Chief Innovator at Digi International, working to forge strong connections with the maker community, uncover new innovation methodologies, support outstanding new work and create prototypes that spur new product development. Faludi has been a professor in the MFA program at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan and in the Interactive Telecommunications graduate program at NYU. He specializes in behavioral interactions through physical computing and networked objects. Rob is the author of Building Wireless Sensor Networks, with ZigBee, XBee, Arduino and Processing published by O’Reilly Media, 2011. He frequently consults on interactive projects including recent work in entertainment, architecture and toys. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Wired Magazine, Good Morning America, BBC World, the Chicago Museum of Science & Industry and MoMA among others. He is a co-creator of LilyPad XBee wearable radios, and Botanicalls, a system that allows thirsty plants to place phone calls for human help.