Conjuring – Expense Map

I like listing down my expenses to keep track of money. For this conjuring assignment, I plan to let user explore my day-to-day expense through Google Maps. I was thinking to use Google Location History at first, but for some reasons, I could not get the data.


I found an alternative option, using Google My Maps, to import a JSON file for it to visualize. I already have the list, but I still need to add the address to it for Google Maps to pin the location. I only have three months of input for now.


Here is the live view of my expense maps:

Twister game

This week, we step away from our original concept and build a twister game. We use conductive paint paired with Touch Board to produce sound and create interaction for user.

The Touch Board had 12-pins that could play different sounds individually when connected. We gathered some sample sounds and tested them with alligator clips. After getting it to work, we decided it’s time to scale it up.

We purposely make it thicker thinking it would provide more conductivity. Unfortunately, after checking the documentation, we found out that the thicker the lines the more likely it is to create resistance value.

We went back on using conductive tape.

We also create another iteration for this, by creating a game that challenge kids’ memory skills, have them remember the sequence of the colors and tap them accordingly.

Indoor Generation

  • We spend 90% of our time indoors
  • Provides minimal daylight and fresh air
  • Indoor air can be 5x more polluted than outside
  • Scientist prove links between lack of daylight and a variety  og physical and mental problems
  • The only time we spend out is the time we commute to school or work.

Mood: Melancholy
Device: Metaphor

Research paper

For research assignment, I picked a paper from Proceedings of ACM IDC11 Interaction Design and Children called Evaluating technology that makes physical games for children more engaging. The paper is somewhat relevant to the project Winnie and I are building.

The authors wish to explore one of the two learning objective in kinesthetic literacy, learning to move. They found out that interactive technologies incorporated in a physical sport helps get players more engaged. And people that played it well will most likely pick up the sport in real life. Few pre-existing successful materials that embrace these ideas are Splashball, Remote Impact, and PingPongPlus.

The game proposed was for user to throw toys toward a display screen. An image shows up when the toy hits the screen and eventually create a digital collage of all the toys in the end.

Some findings through play-test:
1. Children throw differently with a physical object in hand rather than a virtual one
2. Using alternative soft toys instead of hard bouncing balls help eliminate risk of injury and distraction from their end goal
3. Adding element to create personal connections with the children motivate them more
4. Keeping the interaction simple so players of all physical abilities can play.
5. Giving feedback on their hand position, throw velocity etc helps player reflect on their progress or skills

Knock knock

After seeing our prototype, Alex told us about a UK-based company Novalia that specializes in producing conductive ink and boards. They did projects where people could touch a designated portion of event posters, and it outputs sound. Some of the similar products we found are Circuit ScribeBare conductive and 3M electrically conductive tape.

We decided to test the functionality of available materials at ITP before investing into these fancy products. We tried out 555 timer, conductive tape, and littleBits. 555 timer did not really work, but the other two works great, especially littleBits. It’s purely simple and effective.

We put up a visual target for the user to hit on using the slingshot, a buzzer would be triggered once they hit certain point. We plan to scale this up by incorporating copper tape or conductive ink for future version.

One of our user testing the stability of our slingshot.

For research assignment, I picked this paper from 2011 because it is relevant to the concept of my project.

Lo-fidelity toys

For this week, we were asked to make a lo-fidelity toys to be play-tested for our next class.

Some of the prompts given to us were:
– Target a persona, could be a child or adult
– Must be played within a specific environment
– Should be built under three materials (e.g batteries, electronics, wood…)

Winnie and I talked about how tech-heavy the toys nowadays are. Trying to bring technologies to kids as early as possible. Which is so different from what we used to have when we were young. We came across Pinaffo Pluvinage’s Papier Machine and love the aesthetic of their work. Why can’t classic and tech toys have a good match?

We list down some of the classic toys we know, and re-engineered it to add elements of tech to it.

iBall – so you can always be there

For this week, we were asked to critic on a topic related to technology. Pedro gave each group some extra constrains to work on. For us, it was:

    • Attribute: Playful
    • DeviceAbsurdity
    • Mood: Shame

Idit and I decided to make an object concerning mass surveillance. On our first meeting, she came up with the idea of using eyeball to watch back to those who surveil us. I think the idea was interesting, and it matches the constraint of being playful and absurd. But we also thought the form of an eyeball was too predictable.


We then saw these images, and use it as reference for the foundation to our project, (left) gumball machine and (right) eye-shaped candy. After setting with the theme, we did our research hunting for the components. Idit happened to have a gumball machine at home! How wonderful is that! Adafruit has some mini spy camera and TFT display which could be useful. We bought both the sensor but found out that the result was not that ideal nor impactful, plus it was not very stable. The mini spy camera can take photos, but it’s all stored on a microSD card. The TFT only displays a pair of goggly eyes.


We scheduled office hour with Pedro, and he told us about RC camera commonly used for drones. It gives live feed within a certain range and does not require any programming at all!

For some reasons, we were having a hard time matching the right channel for the camera and receiver. Each time we reconnect the power, we would have to search through the different channels . We then noticed that the frequency range would show up for a split seconds when the receiver is attached to my phone app FPViwer, top left of the screen. We try to tune it with the chart given in the instruction sheet and now it works like a charm.

Idit excels in fabrication. She created the eyeballs using paint and plastic spheres. The result was phenomenal.

Final Product: