The interstitial space between biology and technology
A collaboration between 3D Systems and Ekso Bionics that explores the interstitial space between biology and machine.
Through 3D scanning technology we have created custom parts that mediate the binding between Amanda Boxtel and the Ekso bionic suit. Our parts accurately recreate the body form through a process that uses three-dimensional scanning. These parts, that mediate the space between biology and technology, serve as a synthetic musculature (ALife). Through 3D printing technology we have created a material interval between Ekso and Amanda, that is both flexible and breathable, translucent and strong.
The parts are layered, like muscles, they unfold unto Amanda’s body and the Ekso. By creating these parts off Amanda’s body geometry, they fit seamlessly, augmenting the connection with the bionic suit. The pattern on the parts allow ventilation and flexibility, but also an expression of meaning, reaffirming the idea of a synthetic musculature.The Ekso enables Amanda to walk, our 3D printed musculature aims to create a seamless connection between both.
Artificial Life (Alife) Otherwise called ‘synthetic biology’, artificial life does not seek to understand life as it is but to create life as it could be. Lister, Martin. New media: a critical introduction. London: Routledge, 2003. Print.
CubePro is a 3D multi-material printer. The print chamber is contained to control the temperature and generate high quality printing. The form is simple but iconic, the door floats in a chamfer gesture that frames the printer.
The body handle allows for and easier way of emptying the container using only one hand. It also defines the shape, proportions and general aesthetics of the object.
To get the right proportion, I made a cardboard mock-up. After this we defined the CAD in SolidWorks and where able to print some pieces, this exercise is an example of trial and error in the development of a product.
Developed in collaboration with NONOBJECT
This system constitutes a new approach to computing interface, reducing elements (such as monitors) while enhancing the overall experience allowing the user to customize the device to specific needs.
A Hand Held Device / Smart Phone
C Augmented Display</font>
Augmentation / Object Petit a
In this system, the Object Petit a is the C Augmented Display, enabling the addition of an extra layer to reality, virtual and artificial.
The augmentation is produced by a micro projector embedded within the B Dock. In psychoanalysis the Object Petit a acts as the connection that exists between the Real and the Symbolic: between the signifier and unattainable desire.
The B Dock and A Hand Held Device / Smart Phone have a touch screen interface. The interface is customizable, it could act as a keyboard, a drawing tablet or any other type of application.
Developed research in bionics and new 3D technology. Collaborated with Scott Summit in the creation of prosthetic coverings.
This object is based on sound waves. As designers we need to address networks and wireless devices becoming pervasive in our environment. To do so, we can create objects that speak of these physical events that are not visual. With our tools we are able to create metaphors of what it could look like and thus create objects that have a deeper understanding of our technology, in this case a wireless speaker that is connected through a bluetooth network.
“The technological plane is an abstraction: in ordinary life we are practically unconscious of the technological reality of objects. Yet this abstraction is profoundly real: it is what governs all radical transformations of our environment…it is starting from this language, from this consistency of the technical model, that we can reach an understanding of what happens to objects by virtue of their being produced and consumed, possessed and personalized.” Jean Baudrillard
The form of this PDA responds to the way in which we normally hold a phone or a camera.
We are substituting our cell phones for PDA (personal digital assistant) devices. These are able to connect to the web bringing a new array of functions and possibilities. The biggest impact of the iphone is its capability of digital convergence. This is the way in which different functions become available in one device. This has shifted the way in which we design products, now, more frequently, the shape of the object doesn’t respond to its function, becoming a black-box, that enables the interaction through its on-screen interface.
The form has a slight shift in its line that allows for a semiotic recognition of a phone, allowing us to hold it as a phone or as a camera. This example demonstrates an alternative to the black-box that enriches the semiotic communication of the object.
The exhibition collapses to facilitate its transportation
Client: Casa de la Ciudad de Oaxaca, Harp Helú foundation.
This exhibition was designed for the 450 years of history of the city of Oaxaca. To create this project we developed various prototypes. The basic concept was to obtain the largest exhibition area with a system that could collapse; making it easier to travel around the country. Ten exhibition modules were produced. When open it has the capacity for six 48” x 48” display areas. We constructed the panels with Dibond. The hinges are made with nylon, fabricated using a CNC router.
The exhibition travelled to different museums in the country. The modules are still functioning and used for different exhibitions.
This accessories enhance the possibilities of a simple tablet. The origami-like foldable cover contains a touch keyboard. This keeps the general stack-up small while facilitating typing. The cover folds and snaps with magnets to tilt the screen.
The metaphor for this UI is based on a garden, where ideas are shared and individuality rewarded. The flowers bloom and grow and become more special as we agree on the specific point of view. The metaphor represents us, individuality and sharing. It is democratic and poetic and engages with us visually.
Keeping in mind “the beauty of complexity”, I decided to abstract the garden using a three-dimensional environment. This will provide a lot of flexibility in the final design. It could enable different viewpoints in our interface, making it more dynamic.
There is a world that we cannot see. It exists in parallel to our material world as a digital environment.
This environment has its own and taxonomy: LAN, Bluetooth, WiFi, EMF, RFID, radio waves.
This is the material of this ecology.
Our relationship with this environment is mediated through objects (user friendly). This objects become an extension of our body, allowing us to perceive what we could not before. What would it be like to see this parallel world? To create and customize and object that will become part of our daily digital relationship?
blackbox is a social entrepreneurial project that collaborated with imperiled indigenous communities in Oaxaca, one of the poorest states of Mexico. In collaboration we have developed contemporary craft. This practice allowed the communities to expand their market enabling them to have a better alternative of sustainability throughout their craft. http://la-blackbox.com/
Worked in collaboration with Whipsaw in the creation of CISCO’s next generation home router.
This project is part of a multi-platform program to support the protection of Wirikuta, a sacred site of the Wixáritari currently under threat from mining concessions in Mexico. We seek to build on the current movement of ethical sourcing and sustainable cultural production by underscoring the value of the handmade and returning sale profits to the artisans.This project will build cultural awareness of the Wixáritari and create visibility for their struggle to protect their most sacred site, Wirikuta. This site is key to their continued cultural integrity. The overall program will increase cultural awareness, promote civic engagement and build bridges that establish deeper understandings of culture, ecology and preservation.
Conceptualized after playing with a 3d puzzle and thinking of producing it with a CNC router we designed the pieces of the chair in a modular material saving way, this process resulted in the chairs final form.
A transportable chair conceived to use less material.
The chair is collapsible, it includes screws and screwdriver and you can assemble it in less than five minutes. When collapsed it fits in a box that is allowed on an airplane.
Constantly developing research in parametric surfacing to achieve organic textures, that are reactive and modifiable. This allows for the introduction of personalization into the design of products.
In collaboration with the artisan Rodrigo Martinez, we implemented an 18th century ladder chair. This was created and sold in blackbox. They are still in production, please visit:
The projection is a representation of a EMF Field in our environment. The 3D movie allows us to perceive what it will be like if we could actually be capable of looking at the Electromagnetic Fields that surround us.
The Möbius strip represents continuity, in comparison to a timer that measures an specific interval of time. This object represents a section of the möbius strip, thus an interval, not continuous and finite.
The object is activated through a push button on its back. The measurement of time is indicated, abstractly, through a series of lights, that increase and add into the totality of the front display.
Two videos were recorded around San Francisco using two different cameras at the same time. Each video was loaded into a different device. The focal length of the "Stereo Visor" allows us to see the video in 3D.
My question here is how to enable physical objects that intersect with our day to day devices.
These timers were inspired by an hourglass. It works by winding one of the cylindrical elements counter clockwise. This element will rotate until it is aligned again, thus, giving us feedback of time passing by. The alignment of the triangle and the circle represents zero.
This object reacts to the Electromagnetic Field that surrounds it.
Our environment is filled with information. I am interested in making our digital environment visible. I believe that visibility creates awareness thus influencing our behavior.
Electromagnetic Fields activate a couple of sensors that will enable the object reaction. When immerse inside a field the object emits a light and a sound that changes its intensity depending on the strength of the EMF. The object is embed in the everyday, it makes us aware of the artificial environment that surround us. What kind of behaviors are created through this awareness?
I constructed an EMF detector based on a design developed by Aaron Alai http://www.aaronalai.com/. This arduino based detector allows you to read the intensity and location of the field. The object will incorporate this electronic device on its inside.
This lamp allows for the exchange of different paper-shade designs, showcasing laser-cut paper created by the artist Francisco Toledo. This product was designed for production by local manufacturers.