Medialab Prado


Interactivos?'10: Selected projects and Papers

List of papers and abstracts of selected prosals to be collaboratively developed during the Interactivos?'10: Neighborhood Science workshop, that take places in June 7-23, 2010. Leading tutors: PlatoniqDouglas Repetto, and the working team formed by Andrés Burbano, Alejandro Araque, Alejandro Duque and Alejandro Tamayo. Technical assistants: Massimo Avvisati, Pablo Ripollés, Yago Torroja and Gustavo Valera.

Call for collaborators: May 4 - June 4, 2010 [+info]


  • Siri Driessen & Roos van Haaften: Finding the Local [+info]
  • Milan Janic: Home Sweet Home [+info]
  • Fabiana De Barros: Fiteiro Cultural (Culture Kiosk) [+info]
  • Gabriel Menotti Gonring: Gambiarra: The Prototyping Perspective [+info]
  • Allison Kudla: Living building [+info]




by Kelly Andres (Canada)

Waterworks is a collaborative system for water harvesting, bioremediation and mapping surface bound water. The project merges performance, ecological research and community activism. Through three layers of research the project creates a space to locate, analyze and re-conceptualize urban water: Agualab, will serve as a hub for community members and collaborators to process water samples taken from the city, the dissemination of the samples will be through Expanded Puddle, an online map and shared pooling of water sources and lastly, Waterpark, a portable tool for bioremediation that will be developed in the Agualab.

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Open Solar Circuits

by DreamAddictive (Carmen González & Leslie García) (Mexico)

Open Solar Circuits is a project that works as a framework of collective construction, making a system of the knowledge obtained during the experimentation process, to be reproduced later in different contexts. The project is focused on experimenting with electronic sustainable circuits. The dynamics of the project in the context of Interactivos?'10 Neighbourhood Science seeks, in the first place, the creation of a repository of ideas about design and development of discreet electronic circuits fed by sustainable energies. This repository is created from responses made collectively among the collaborators and promoters of the project.

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by Brian Degger (UK)

This project seeks the realization of a bacterial-luminance based assay to test the food of urban foragers for the presence of heavy metals. We are interested in merging wild bacteria and electronics in a way that gives us an indication of the presence of heavy metals. We propose to do this by isolating luminous bacteria from seafood (this is done), culturing the bacteria until glowing (this has been done before), and then with a control solution and an unknown solution (both prepared from vegetation) compare the luminosities of the solutions with an optical to electrical detector. This will be fed into a computer program and also logged online. We envisage prototyping this semi-living device at Interactivos?'10.

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by Sandra Dávila (USA)

Re:tag is a unique tagging system that enhances the emotional connection between individuals and products while encouraging responsible re-use of discarded objects. Individuals wishing to get rid of appliances, furniture, and clothes will leave a voice message on a database describing the story of the to-be discarded product. A costumed tag with a unique ID and telephone number will then be placed on the object before being disposed of on the street. Dialling the instructed number, neighbours or passerbys will hear the voice message, getting qualitative information about the product. By fostering trust in the object, locals are more likely to re-use it, thus reducing the overall waste within the community.

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Algas Verdes

by Hamilton Mestizo (Colombia)



This project is working to develop a cheaper and easy-to-assemble device which will be able to observe biochemical reactions in photosynthetic bacteria (Green Algae). We will build a photobioreactor where a particular atmosphere can be simulated using algae biomass, solar radiation, CO2 and water. Algae use CO2 and H2O in its metabolism and in this process oxygen and other molecules (e.g. hydrogen) are liberated, changing the chemical composition of the environment. That process will be observed by gas sensors (O2, CO2, H, among others) using a microcontroller (Arduino) which calculates the proportion of those elements inside the photobioreactor. An interface (sound, light, movement) will inform us about (dis)equilibrium of those gases.

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by Rory Solomon & Marek Walczak (USA)

Virtualurban explores the perception and phenomena of space and the ‘unseen’: how physical infrastructure, social and network culture interplay within a community. Starting with workshops, we move from people's subjective understanding -a day or typical journey– to the more conceptual, to create ‘elements’ of the shared world around them. Once we have a set of shared ‘elements’ – which can be physical infrastructure,psychological spaces or physical movements – we create a series of generative forms that correspond to the workshop's concepts. These are
displayed as augmented realities, overlaying the actual view of the cityscape with matching generative forms, creating a dialogue between a conceived actuality and a constructed ideal.

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Birds within

by Luis Bustamante (Colombia)

It is a sound installation that maps satellite orbits to an observer's given location, adding sound as a mean towards an augmented perception of satellite activity around us. The results are both an experience of the
ubiquitous presence of satellites in our personal space and a musical experience generated by outer space traffic. It uses a public database of two-line-elements (TLE are sets of numerical descriptions of the orbit of a satellite that allows to track its position at a given time) to create an aural mapping of satellite positions in correspondence to the observer's location.

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Control Mental

by Maurizio Dikdan (Venezuela)

A CRT TV connected to a sphygmomanometer (blood pressure meter) will be used as an oscilloscope to generate a Lissajous curve based on the valuesof blood pressure of the visitor: the integrer frequencies (M,N) will be functions of the values of systolic and diastolic pressure of the visitor. A reference chart will be created to relate common blood pressure values with certain curves, allowing visitors to assess the state of their blood pressure without referencing to numeric values.

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Society of Urban Naturalists

by Emilio Zamudio (Mexico)

Inspired by the clubs and associations that gathered the naturalists before the birth of Modern Science, Participants in Interactivos?'10 will create the Society of Urban Naturalists (SUN), an open forum in the web for the explorers of the urban ecosystems to share resources and discuss findings or observations, to share drawings, poetry and any kind of artwork inspired by the ecosystem we live in; but also to organize walks, meetings and actions in the city. Because science, beauty and social conciousness should never be separated. The SUN will begin by making a list of resources for the urban naturalists in Madrid and organizing a series of walks to investigate the ecosystems in the area surrounding the Medialab-Prado.

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IceCap [Automated Collapsible Forms]

by Erika Lincoln (Canada)

This project will focus on the experimental design and construction of a kinetic paper sculpture in the form of an Arctic Ice Cap, which simulates the act of melting by the Madrid sun, shrinking with the aide of motors, string, and solar power. The sculpture is intended to highlight climatological predictions surrounding the shrinking of the Polar Ice Cap which covers the Arctic sea. The goal of this project is to bring together people who have an interest in geometric paper folding, sculpture, solar power, mechanics, and concerns regarding how local environmental behaviours can have global consequences.

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