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An Emotional Machine


"It is not the consciousness of men that determines their being,
but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness."
Karl Marx

Our basic emotions evolved long before our more rational functions, resulting in decision-making processes that are often ruled by the heart and not the head. An Emotional Machine poses the question can and should we allow artificial intelligence to similalry evolve.

Would giving machines emotions, give them empathy? Or would they become selfish? And would emotional machines condition us to have more empathy towards machines? And how would this affect interactions and interfaces, experience, and ultimately the design of machines.

A recurring theme in my work is anthropomorphism and our perceived emotions of inanimate objects. With a nod to developmental robotics(*) and affective computing (**), An Emotional Machine is an over-sensitive monolith.

An Emotional Machine is a minimal tower of light and sound, and a feedback loop, that responds to it's environment, particulalrly to others' emotions, and to its own. The machine's emotions are expressed as generative sound and visuals, which attempts to influence the emotions of those around it.

An Emotional Machine creates a moody room, that ebbs and flows, from a deep contemplative trance-enducing state, to a state on the edge of chaos. It is a machine intelligence feedback loop, where the sound generates the visuals and where the visuals, coupled with visitors' presence and emotional state, in turn generate the sound.

An Emotional Machine was developed as part of a residency at Schmiede in Hallein, Austria.
#Generative #Javascript #ProjectionMapping #SoundReactive #MotionReactive #SoundDesign

* Developmental robotics is a school of robotics where robots learn behaviors the same way human children do.
** Affective computing is a branch of computer science involving the reading, interpretation, replication and sometimes manipulation of human emotions.

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