Erkennen

Independent Study -- Danelle Briscoe Spring 2016

Erkennen, to recognize or to know, refers to the idea that computers recognize and comprehend human signals and vice versa. This study began as an abstract, interactive art installation and developed into a test of the way people communicate with machines. Erkennen serves as a tool that responds to human movement with further information about a specific location, and it records the encounter.

Fit to a cell in UT’s Living Wall, a projector and Kinect act as input and output for a computer in the communication loop. While the Kinect reads physical movement, the projector maps corresponding patterns directly onto people in range. Projected colors correspond to the viewer’s location, showing the pattern of plant placement in the wall.

These devices require audience participation to activate an interaction. Recognizing that participants usually create a spectacle of irregular movement in this situation, embedding the hardware into an existing system shifts focus onto the space rather than the action. With a similar setup and adapted projection, the computer could be used in other locations, such as a library, to redefine how people move through space.