If it doesn’t resemble a circuit diagram, then, how do we decide what the internet looks like? Artist and researcher Ingrid Burrington began with data from TeleGeography in her 2014 project to visualize the submarine cables being tapped by the United State’s National Secruity Agency and the United Kingdom’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), facts revealed by the often aesthetically-displeasing slides and hard-to-follow documents leaked by Edward Snowden in 2013. But she quickly realized that there was more to it than just maps. As Burrington described in a recent interview with Hanna Hurr for Mask Magazine:
“I realized that part of the point is that it’s distributed. Initially I was looking at office parks, like where defense contractors work, then I realized that they all have data centers, and data centers take you to where the cables are…. I’d drive around Northern Virginia trying to find data centers, and at a certain point I realized that I was presuming the internet to be somewhere else. I wanted to figure out how to find it within my immediate surroundings.”
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.