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Blubber Bots!

A project log for FEED

An immersive video experience allowing users to experience multiple POVs in real time, swapping channels through head movement.

AndrewNAndrewN 07/20/2017 at 22:050 Comments

If we attached the remote camera to a flying blimp, perhaps we could see a space from a different and unexpected perspective.  We leveraged Jed's Blubber Bots to provide a nice, stable, platform.

Blubber Bots are floating DIY robotic species that navigate autonomously and intelligently. Blubber Bots float, dance, seek and sing. They are light-seeking hellium-filled balloons that graze the landscape in search of light and cellphone signals. Designed into the inflatable form is a set of light sensors enabling them to seek out the brightest light source.

They are also equipped with a phone flasher and can recognize cellphone activity. You can interact with a Blubber Bot by making a call and waving your phone near it. In response, it will go into a flocking dance or sing you a special tune.

Social and friendly in nature, Blubber Bots like to play. You can invite other Blubber Bots over for a party to watch a roomful flock and mingle. They propel themselves using helium buoyancy and two directional motors. They are a little clumsy though and bump into things. Fortunately, Blubber Bots are born with a feeler (bump switch) to help them out of tricky situations. At a flick of a “feeler”, they back up and head in a new direction.

Not only do they like to play, but they love to sing. Blubber Bots have a unique voice generated from a vibrating motor and a small piezo speaker attached to its mylar body. They bellow sounds similar to a whale’s song and serenade you with melodies. When not being played with, they rest while tooting periodic sounds in their sleep, dreaming until they once again are awakened.

What is a Blubber Bot?

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