The MIT Kinetic Design Group presented an extensive amount of research projects exploring intelligent systems. The “Interactive kinetic façade” is a proposal for an architectural-scale installation that creates an add-on layer to the lower level of a building’s envelope. The objective was to create a dynamic surface that has the ability to respond to pedestrian activity. More specifically, every time a pedestrian walks by, the bars sway toward that direction in a wave-like motion. Even though each one of the bars moves in a simple fashion, their combined action creates complex patterns. The movement of the bars is controlled through sensors programmed to track an individual’s motion, point towards the “target” and follow it. The adjacent rows sense the movement and start wobbling, affecting that way the motion of the others, and so on. The visual result can be regarded as the kinetic diagram of the pedestrian’s flow. The Group tested the proposal creating a tile of the façade in a 1:1 working prototype.
1, 2: Fox, M., & Kemp, M. (2009). Interactive architecture. New York, NY: Princeton Architectural Press, 146.