Ping-Reset by Bart Koppe is an installation where 36 internet routers attached to the ceiling are rebooted when functioning, making an attached object to make a sound, creating an orchestrated symphony generated by ping and reset.
Playing off the subtleties of human attachment to animate objects and creatures, Ricardo Nascimento’s “Suffering Machine” remains a relevant reminder of the trials and tribulations that we often discover with the technological apparatus and detritus that occupies our daily existence. His “Suffering Machine” is a robot consisting of three arms or legs all connected at the same joint. All of the robot’s limbs are controlled by a separate motor, although one of the motors is purposely weak in an attempt to invoke a type of artificial handicap. This subsequent construction poses difficulties for the machine to move around its immediate environment and thus attempts to provoke an emotional connection between the audience and the object, who in turn empathize with the robot’s problematic existence. This feeling might be akin to the way someone might typically emotionally connect to a crippled or handicapped individual. When the robots falls, it finds a way to rehabilitate itself, stand up and repeat the process. If an onlooker attempts to reach down to help it, the robot plays “dead”, thus not accepting any outside aid. Overall, Nascimento’s intent with this interesting project was to offer an artificial being full of “contradictions and strange behaviors” in order to examine and explore our growing attachment to technology and the human-like characteristics it can often exhibit and demonstrate.