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Days: THUR Time: 2:30 pm - 6:10 pm Fabrication Lab room 0039 of the CoMForT
Instructor: Joe McKay joseph.mckay at
office located on first floor, 1007

Computers are slick beautiful machines, but what happens in the virtual world generally stays in the virtual world. This class is designed to bridge the gap between software and hardware - demystifying the space between the two. We will do this through examining game-play and ludic functions. In this class we will introduce the arduino. The Arduino is an inexpensive microcontroller that has digital as well as analog inputs and outputs. It has a free programing environment for both mac and PC and plays well with Processing - which is also free.

This class requires quite a bit of programming. I will be providing a lot of sample code, but it is also necessary that you learn or already understand the basics of Processing if you do not have it already.

Class time will be divided between

This class will divide into two main sections. Open Source Class
Processing is an "open Source" program - meaning it is free to use and distribute. The arduino is sometimes referred to as "Open Source Hardware" - of course it's not free, but it's way cheaper than most micro controllers. In this spirit, our class will be "Open Source" as well. In your research you will learn some cool stuff. it's on you to share that cool stuff with the rest of us, and in return we will do the same with you.

Also, you will be expected to be self directed. This means there will be a lot of class time during which you need to be working on your individual projects. "Working" means no Facebook, no twiiter, no texting, no pict-o-whatevering you kids are into.

A working understanding of Processing - or similar programing experience is a must.
A willingness to participate and share ideas.
A healthy fear and respect of electricity.

This class combines physical materials and programming. Students need to be able to program on location where we also create our sculptutes and installations. You will need to bring a laptop to class - it can be Mac or PC. The software required is open source and free.

Each week we are going to be learning and doing quite a bit. Attendance is a must - please don't miss a class unless you really have to.
More than 2 absences is going to dramatically effect your grade. 4 absences is an F.

You DO need to come on time.

Each student will do a short presentation of an artist or maker that is doing something interesting. These presentations will be no longer than 10 - 15 minutes each, and begin in the second half of the semester.


Equipment and the room
There will be some projects that may require you to buy / salvage your own materials. We will be talking about how to repurpose electronics in class. We have Arduinos and breadboards that are yours to keep.

We share this room with other NME classes, and we need to be respectful of the space and equipment.

I really like this book by Daniel Shiffman

This is the official word - NOTE: there are changes from previous semesters
Accessibility Statement

The Office of Disability Resources collaborates directly with students who identify with documented disabilities to create accommodation plans, including testing accommodations, in order for students to access course content and validly demonstrate learning. For those students who may require accommodations, please call or email the Office of Disability Resources, 914-251-6035, (Student Services Building, #316A).