Bordertown was an eight week design studio run by Tim Maly and Emily Horne in Toronto, where we researched and created projects that explored human spaces near and around border crossings. Our work was shown at the Detroit Creative Corridor show in September 2011, and I served as a mentor for a Bordertown design jam in March.
My research and project focused on borders as already tangible but imperfect interfaces between cultural groups. My task became one of designing an exploratory interface for this communication between human, informational, and physical objects.
I explored the topics around borders in depth: explorations ranging from unmanned aerial drones, to desire lines, to border drawing robots. From these material explorations, a story and theory around borders emerged, and the final prototype became about storytelling and interface.
Three prototypes realized a final piece which was highly simplified in both presentation and technology. Early prototypes had complex sensor/actuator behaviour attempting to communicate the idea through interactive systems.
The final piece was a speculation on how border traffic which placed the visitor in the role of border guard using an arduino powered interface, print material, and visual border crossing scene.