Category : HACK
By Yuka Okada＋Hirokazu Kawana（Japan）
Human beings tend to disregard things that fall outside their areas of interest. Our project was designed to bring people closer together to give more meaning to everyday life by hacking colored traffic cones—an item that we seldom take much notice of, yet often find around the place.
The colored traffic cones are equipped with a device that controls the light, color and brightness, and they can showcase a variety of expressions by changing up the timing and formation. The cones are digitally fabricated and can be made using a variety of familiar materials. To that end, this project has brought people and communities together, individuals together and people and science closer together in various locations around the city including in universities and at the science museum.
This device is not only for guiding people and keeping them safe, but can also be used for live performances and as a teaching resource for educational purposes.
The frame section was made with DIY materials and a laser cutter, and the device was inserted into multiple colored traffic cones. Thanks to the high level of accuracy in the production process, we were able to put it together using familiar materials. Also, for the staging of the changing expressions of colored LED lights, we used a cutting plotter, and our expertise in change and lighting using materials such as PVC sheets. We also conducted a number of workshops that focused on the allures of using colored traffic cones and digital fabrication technology.
This entry allows us to reexamine your ordinary colored traffic cones by using a variety of colored LED lights. They have transformed the common traffic cone into a creative new media by adding a variety of functions to its simple atypical form. This idea, which was derived by a group of students, lends itself to a wide variety of applications including for projects, workshops, and live performances. The students’ idea speaks to so many people and creates a lasting impression making it very interesting. However, we cannot deny that extending the applications of this project are limited due to the fixed form of the color traffic cones.