Halloween Midterm!


I was paired with Su He for my midterm project. We agreed to come up with ideas separately first then share them with each other. After a few days we met again. Su He was very clear that she wanted to make a game and was excited to work on the computational media part. However, I had a very vague idea of wanting to make something entertaining, very physical (off-screen) and with familiar interaction.

Su He’s idea:

Image result for crossing chicken game

At first when Su Hu showed me the game I wanted to make the exact same game into a physical game. with motors running in row of the game. This seemed too difficult. I then began sketching various ways for a person to navigate the game i.e. control the game, as well as ways to enhance the experience of the game.

Ideas for controllers:

  • dance pad – recommended by Jeff (Jeff said to think of new interactions, use uncommon sensors)
    Image result for dance pad
  • joy stick

Ideas for experience enhancers:

  • use LED to highlight game actions e.g. direction of movement, game state (game begin, level up, game over)
  • add special effects such as making the game rain candy using special buttons – Makey Makey keys e.g. pressing on halloween jelly, candies, donuts etc.Gel Charms Halloween Window Clings Black Cat and Pumpkins  Screen Shot 2561-11-01 at 10.04.01.png

By the end of week one I had sketched out the design for the game and began searching for materials.

***add photo here***



I shopped on Adafruit and found the perfect joystick – the small arcade joystick. It looks very sturdy and uncomplicated. Also, LED strips for the experience enhancements.

Small Arcade Joystick Adafruit Mini Skinny NeoPixel Digital RGB LED Strip - 144 LED/m - 1m WHITE


I began coding before the actual fabrication because I was more confident on the fabrication side.

I got the Neopixels running smoothly quite quickly. However, the joy stick, seemingly simple, took the longest time. The product came with no datasheet. It took me some time to figure out that there were 4 switches inside. It then took me more time figure out how to power 4 switches. In the end, I went to the residents and got some help.

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While it was not working I also tried plan B – the potentiometer joystick.

Remark: due to the lack of time I was only able to do the lighting based on the stick input but not p5 input.


I ruined the acrylic I had found on the junk shelf. It felt like the laser cutter was being extra weak and would not cut anything on that day. I ended up using cardboard instead.

I was familiar with the materials I’d chosen (cardboard, acrylic, cork, screws). This part went by fairly quickly.


Soldering!!! I soldered for at least 1.5 hours straight. I think I felt dizzy by the end. But this was a very good practice.


This part also went smoothly, thanks to Su He. I did most of the coding on Arduino. It sends hardcoded values through the serial port to p5. These values act as controllers of the game.



Before the presentation we added music to make the game more alive and tested a few more times to be sure all the switches were working perfectly.

The finished piece:


People knew right away how to play the game.


Jeff pointed out that the LED strips can be slow to load. Arnab said to look up the FastLED library which might solve the problem – this was partly why I couldn’t get the lights to run in the background while no switches were on.

Jeff also mentioned looking up https://retropie.org.uk/.

What I wish:

More time!!! Always. Also I wish I had a better idea for the switches.


Inspired by


Bands generated from the site have actually been famous!

play here: https://editor.p5js.org/nt1475@nyu.edu/sketches/SyEY0o2s7

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I ran through countless problems with this exercise.

  • http vs. https – took me 2 hours to work out that I was missing an ‘s’
  • API rate exceeded – I cannot query data after sometime
    The code would not run
    Screen Shot 2561-10-23 at 10.40.35.pngScreen Shot 2561-10-23 at 10.27.50.png
  • html over canvas – I cannot create the canvas on top of DOM element

Too add:

  • adjectives

The original design:

Screen Shot 2561-10-23 at 10.44.40.png

Screen Shot 2561-10-23 at 10.40.35.png

Shadow Patterns

Mounting motors! – something I failed doing a few weeks ago. What was I thinking attaching the motor to the white plastic lid … It flew off.

Screen Shot 2561-10-18 at 01.46.20.png



My first instinct was to go to the junk shelf to find what was destined to be mine. I found a functioning turntable, what a perfect object for a motor perfect! I tried taking it apart to see the mechanics inside. However, when I opened it up I was overwhelmed by all the components. After some time of trying to rewire it, I put it back in the junk shelf.



Since faith wasn’t going to decide for me, I went back to my interest, optical illusions. I saw a motor sculpture project online where multiple sheets of perforated metals were used to create / animate various patterns according to their rotations.

This reminded me of when I looked through my window, through the wire windows against the sun (in Thailand wire windows are used to filter insects). I wanted to recreate the sculpture based on the experience, as well as recreate that experience in the form of a sculpture.

Wire windows

Related image



  • x2 Stepper motors – very slow drive
  • x2 Patterned acrylic sheetsI tried sourcing available materials but perforated metals were both too expensive and difficult to work with. Also, it would give a negative pattern effects ( holes will be dark). So I went with acrylic.Image result for perforated metal sheet
  • x2 Cork base
  • x2 Standing sticks (acrylic)
  • x4 Screws
  • x2 Arduino and jump wires
  • x2 Power supply
  • x1 Super glue (for acrylic)


  • TEST MATERIALMVIMG_20181013_214435.jpgline_1539789653095.jpg


Spray glue is better


Always use callipers


Test them holes

Screen Shot 2561-10-18 at 07.58.47.png Screen Shot 2561-10-18 at 07.58.37.png

Screen Shot 2561-10-18 at 07.58.18.png



Finished work



MVIMG_20181018_000858 2.jpg

00100dPORTRAIT_00100_BURST20181018001511510_COVER 2.jpg


Generally I feel a lot more confident in making things and trying different materials and tools. This class has been one of the most fun classes and closest to my interests for me. I am inspired by a lot of examples given in class and on the blog and I hope to reach that point in craftsmanship and precision in the future!


Flower Vase (Material Combination)


Inspired by the flower pattern itself, I made a flower vase using cork (yoga block), pvc pipe and laser cut cardboard.

The design was inspired by a sculpture which mimics fibonacci patterns in nature. Reference: http://beyond123.com/pa/helicone.html


  1. Cork cutting and drilling – the cork cuts very well on the band saw
  2. PVC pipe cutting – miter saw
  3. Laser cut cardboard (this took a few experiments to get the sizes right as per usual)
    Screen Shot 2561-10-10 at 19.04.52.png

Finished piece





Flower Object Communication

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I have always wanted to make spirographs so I experimented with the equations. I turned these into objects with various properties including sizes, numbers of petals and shapes. I used the array function to duplicate the flowers.

I tried to make the objects communicate in a way that if one is smaller than 100 pixels, make every other one ‘red’. However, I could not get this to work in time and only those which are smaller than 100 pixels would turn red.

The sketch: https://editor.p5js.org/nt1475@nyu.edu/sketches/rk9nyrKcm