In times of the smart phone, messages from friends and colleagues reach us everywhere we go. Our communication becomes quick and volatile as we rush through the day.


In contrast to this I tried to imagine a form of communication that was spatially fixed and happened gradually over time. The aim was to revive ancient rituals of expression like Zen-Garden-Arrangements with technological means of today.

I developed a message device which can be used by physically distorting its surface (poking into it or pulling it). The information is then transferred  via internet to another person’s home where eighty pins reproduce the exact shape.


Quite different from mobile devices, my design implies a “slow-chat”, located in the domestic space.

Next to the design of several  functional  prototypes, I explored the potential of communication that is based on three- dimensional pixels:

Which visual /symbolic vocabulary would emerge if we conversed like this?


This full-body-communication-device is meant to connect two people at different places in a tangible way.

Users can push, lean in the wall or pull out certain areas and the action is mirrored in the corresponding space. Each interaction will leave behind a different topography at the wall.


In order to explore possible interactions via connected walls, I built several prototypes and tested their potential. My responsive wall does not connect two different spaces yet, but it can serve a base for further research.


© 2018 Jonas Althaus