The New York Times R&D Lab has created Object Record, a device that pairs objects with sensors that perceive environmental conditions around it through touch, motion and more. Object Record prints a constant monologue of its perceptions of and responses to the changing input. The text of this monologue is printed out in ticker form on a mini printer so that visitors can see not only the current “thoughts” of Object Record, but its “memory” as well.
Object Record is part of The New York Times’ effort to discover and explore the poetic and narrative potential of the Internet of Things (IoT). “As more of our objects and environments become actuated, connected, and data-enabled, these enchanted objects are developing the capacity to contain their own stories. An object can remember its history, can understand how it’s used, [and] can to talk to other objects around it to understand its environment. As these capabilities evolve, objects no longer become inert backdrops to our experiences, but active participants in our world that can share stories about themselves and us,” said Alexis Lloyd, Creative Director of the R&D Lab at The New York Times.
The Sitara processor-based BeagleBone Black is the main system controller for Object Record. BeagleBone Black meets the lab’s needs because of its low price, large feature set and ability to run the Linux operating system. The large feature set enables prototyping without worrying about network, memory and other constraints, and the ability to run the Linux operating system allows developers to program in the language that works best for them. Object Record code is written in Python, for example, and uses the Adafruit BBIO library to interface with the GPIOs.
BeagleBone Black communicates information from various sensors on Object Record, including a photocell, a TMP102 temperature sensor and a VCNL4000 proximity and ambient light sensor, to a thermal printer via TTL serial, when sensor values cross a threshold or when a certain amount of time elapses without a threshold event. This causes the printer to issue a remark about its environment. Noah Feehan, Maker at The New York Times R&D Lab, said, “The thermal printers presented [a] challenge: between the first exploratory purchase many months ago and the purchases made for this installation, the manufacturer made a few small, undocumented changes that delayed progress for a few days.”
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.
Join us every Wednesday night at 8pm ET for Ask an Engineer!
Maker Business — The Defense Production Act and the global supply chain
Wearables — Feathers from leather
Electronics — Get Oriented!
Python for Microcontrollers — Python on Microcontrollers Newsletter: Events, Projects, and much more! #Python #Adafruit #CircuitPython @micropython @ThePSF
Adafruit IoT Monthly — No-Code IoT with WipperSnapper, Beaming Internet across the Congo, and more!
Microsoft MakeCode — MakeCode Thank You!
EYE on NPI — Maxim’s Himalaya uSLIC Step-Down Power Module #EyeOnNPI @maximintegrated @digikey
New Products – Adafruit Industries – Makers, hackers, artists, designers and engineers! — JP’s Product Pick of the Week 10/19/21 DRV2506L Haptic Motor Controller @adafruit @johnedgarpark #adafruit #newproductpick
No comments yet.
Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.