Technical Issues

Because these works are meant to be touched and parts of them moved, there are lots of technical issues and techniques to be worked out.

Here is an initial list of some approaches we have thought about and/or worked on.

Safety for People

It is essential that the work can not injure adults or children, even it they abuse it.

People will tend to spin things as fast as they can go; the system must resist that by some means.

If a work has large moving parts they must not be able to be moved to where they would hit a person.

This is why our first works consist of cans and balls on steel rods: so the motion is very limited. Each can and ball has objects inside that slow down the rotation of the ball or can (which also allows people to adjust them more accurately.)

Safety for the Work

The work must be designed so that its normal use – and even expected abuse – will not break it.

We do assume that works that are touched a lot may require periodic maintenance or repainting, but the work should be designed to need as little upkeep as possible.

Outdoors and Weather

This project is largely focused on works that can live outdoors, with no supervision, in any weather.

On the other hand, indoor interactive works would also be great to create and to experience, and would be a lot less difficult to design and build.

Mechanical Means

Many of the interactive works we see today are electronic in nature and while we enjoy these, the focus of this project is hand-operated works that don’t require electric power.

This is both a safety issue, but also part of wanting to create works where people can see just how they work, yet still enjoy engaging with them.