Alone Together: Human Touch in a Digital World

Ever been at a party where everyone made more contact with a networked device than one another?  As a response to digitally mediated shyness, Eyeris is a cultural prosthetic that renders the user dependent on human touch for sight.

While many of today's digital devices extend our abilities to connect with each other, the disability of our current digital devices can been seen through our loss of tangible human interaction.  This piece was made in an exploration of the importance of human interdependency in a society living under the myth of autonomy driven by technological symbiosis between human and computer.

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Eyeris is a cultural prosthetic that renders the user dependent on human touch for sight.  While many of today's digital devices extend our abilities to connect with each other, disability of our current digital devices can been seen through our loss of tangible human interaction.  I made this piece in trying to explore the importance of human interdependency in a society living under the myth of autonomy driven by technological symbiosis between man and computer.

Eyeris is a mechanically operated electronic device powered by digital input that is deliberately over-engineered to call attention to the social behavioral conditioning imposed on us through less discreet technological devices that we assimilate on a daily basis.

Architecture traditionally creates social relationships through material compositions.  However, with so many social relations occurring in the digital realm, what is in place of materiality?  What role does physical space, fleshy bodies, and tangible apparatuses play in our visual age of rapidly changing materials and media, with social connection being the forefront of interest? Today's apparatuses of engagement have evolved-- this piece, at times tongue in cheek, heightens our awareness of new models of etiquette for social interaction that exist now that everyone has access to a pocket full of contacts.

 

Photographed by Hang Xu.
Alone Together is the title of a book by esteemed technology theorist Sherry Turkle.

Alone Together
laser-cut cardboard, custom designed and 3d printed eyeris mechanism, laser cut acrylic, servo, Arduino, capacitive touch sensor
17" x 17" x 17"