On October 22nd, Karaj ran a hardware hacking workshop and 18 people from different fields participated. Our host was hardware maker guru Bilal Ghalib. After explaining the basics of electronics, the participants were asked by Bilal to divide into groups and worked on their projects. The workshop was a success and people had lot of fun! Here’s what Bilal had to to say about the workshop.
Karaj and GEMSI brought together an amazing group of individuals. Artists, programmers, musicians, and engineers got together and learned some new tools. You never really know what will happen when you release a new tool to creative people, and I was so excited to share what the group came up with.
Here’s a sneek peek on what went on during the workshop:
Karaj bills itself as Beirut’s Media Lab in east Beirut and was the perfect place to host our Daft Punk set design workshop. Using the free and open source technologies Arduino and Processing we were able to rapidly teach a simple way to make interactive displays and interfaces including music sequencers, live image manipulation, motion and sound generation. The workshop was held in the main room, with attendance of 18. Participants learned how to make a basic circuit by making a throwable LED. We then talked about open source and the Arduino platform, and people discussed what they could make, and how they could take free and open projects online and bootstrap off of that to make awesome complex things rapidly. After a quick lunch, people divided themselves into groups and began working on their projects. Everyone came up with unique ideas, and everyone used a combination of sensors and microcontroller programming to make a programmable interactive display!
I was lucky to have support from Bassam at Karaj and Depot Beirut along with Maya and Marc from AUB and together in just 5 hours the teams went from having no first hand knowledge of Arduino and Processing to creating some pretty great interactive pieces. One team built a distance sensor for volume control, I think that would be a pretty great thing to have by my computer sometimes! Another group made a image and sound shifter controlled by waving your hands in front of a IR sensor. Team Aquaduino made a pressure sensitive wind sensor out of a barometer and used that to move an LED windmill while sequencing some lights. Another group made a beat detector visualizer and color projector depending on the tempo of the music and a tactile pressure sensor!
It was all done within the span of one day. This is one of the awesome things about open source technology and collaboration. Getting together into a group really allowed each person to play to their strengths and share to build a bigger more awesome project. I’m so thankful to have had the opportunity to host this workshop at Karaj, it was an amazing place and I can’t wait to be back in Beirut to see what this group does with all the Arduinos they now have! Go, build a future you want to see.
- Bilal Ghalib, GEMSI