Language used: MaxMSP
Repurposing Objects and Affordances
Every object has its own set of "Affordances". Affordance is a very magical word. Donald Norman defines this term in the context of Human-Computer Interaction as a reference to "action possibilities" that are readily perceivable by an actor. It is a quality of an object, or an environment, which allows an individual to perform an action as Wikipedia simply puts it out there for us.
MetroCard is an exploration into affordances and examining affordances as a way to "suggest" or "invite" a new action possibility rather than to "provide" an action that is already widely accepted. The common perceived affordance of a metro card is swiping, isn't it? A flat surface, a thin layer of plastic. Relational to the turnstile, its form already speak for itself - "Swipe Me!"
However MetroCard is repurposed for a new use- making tunes. Not quiet MacGyver style but it basically uses the swiping affordance as a way to "make tunes" rather than to "get home or work".
I got a crappy walkman from Chinatown for 3 bucks and hacked into it to use the same magnet head that reads the mix tapes. This magnet reads the magnetic pattern on the card and sends the data to MaxMSP to create visuals corresponding to the change in the audio that card makes. The footage is my commute on L train from Union Square to Graham Avenue.
Watch the demo here.