This project was completed during a four day workshop on Grasshopper and Firefly taught by Jason Kelly Johnson and Andrew Payne at the University of Oregon - Portland during the summer of 2011. Associated LEDs explores the lost spaces of a building, the un-programmed circulation spaces that we often pay no attention to. The project tries to draw attention to the space through an interactive surface composed of an array of LEDs and proximity sensors. As a person walks into the area, LEDs begin to light, growing brighter as the person comes closer. The LEDs represent the influence or "personal space" of a person. As people circulate through and around the space, these LED "fields" begin to interact with one another, merging together as people move into one another's space.
The prototype consists of 4 LEDs in a 2x2 array and 4 light sensors that mimic the output of proximity sensors. This interactive prototype has two uses, one to show the light levels of 4 LEDs of the full size array represented graphically in Rhino. These 4 LEDs can be selected by moving an encompassing box around, so one can view the differing light levels throughout the imagined surface. The second use is to actually sense presence (or in this case light levels) which defines the overall values of the LEDs in the graphic array.
The site of the imagined surface is in an atrium space in the University of Oregon's White Stag building in Portland, Oregon. However, the surface has also been imagined to be an entry canopy to a building or a bus shelter, where the interactive responsive surface will show users how they and others move around a space and interact with one another. This could also occur in a pubic open space, a square or sidewalk; where people could begin to understand their presence among others and how each person circulates through a space both interacting with and avoiding one another.