7 Feb 2007 ixisuprflyixi   » (Master)

I built artBOT, from scratch parts and pieces that were lying around, in about an hours time. Yet when the bot moves, its patterns mimic a child's drawing behavior. Circles and dots and incoherent scribbling. Does the artBOT really possess the power to make "random art" or does the robot just happen to bounce in circular and sometimes not so circular patterns. artBOT is not capable of making even the simplest geometric patterns (other than CIRCLES) but the drawings do look, to me atleast, very organic and fluid. The amporphous shapes that this bundle of simple electronics churns out is sometimes astounding, and at other times, laughable. When artBOT is in "line mode" the drawings have very dark lines (as opposed to light dots) which are random and circular but are sometimes right angles, and I would be very impressed if at some point and time artBOT draws a full rectangle even if it is a mangled one. I do not believe that artBOT has any form of intelligence, but it does have stimulus-response ability. The kind Mark Tilden is fond of. The eccentric motor spins and this makes the robot jump, the robot jumps at a height determined by the weight and speed of the eccentric counter weight. Once the "legs" (markers) contact the ground they provide some small amount of shock absorption which gives way to the next jump. The variables of all the small details become the emergent intelligence. The current status of all the variables at one moment in time is like the systems memory which makes it next move based upon the last "known" status. By last known status I mean the status of all the variables (of which they are too numerous to list). In this roundabout way the robot can perform a basic movement and based on the circumstances it is presented with, will make its next move. Scrutinizing things in this manner one may come to the conclusion that artBOT's intelligence level can be compared to that of a rubber ball. :)

picture of artBOT:


picture of artBOT's art:


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