SensiLab opens its doors to curious minds regardless of levels and disciplines. This winter, the lab engaged undergraduate students from IT and Design to do a Winter Research Scholarship project. This collaborative project aims to create a remote communication experience for Open Day, opening up dialogs between visitors to Monash’s Caulfield and Clayton campuses through unconventional interactions.
The final installation, Affinity Machine, includes two identical set-ups at the two campuses. Each consists of four telephones in cages hanging down from a metal structure. When someone picks up one of the phones, they can ‘talk’ to someone at the other campus in different ways.
At one cage, participants create music using a keypad made to sound like piano keys. The soundtracks they create are played at the other campus where someone may reply with another music piece. At another cage, as people speak into the phone, their conversations manifest in text projected in the middle of the structure. There are buzzwords that trigger images to pop up on the message board. People could also talk directly with the other campus like a normal phone, only their voices are filtered through many effects and echo, which alters the mood of the conversations.