Tuesday Jul 31, 2007

playa programming -- OpenSolaris at Burning Man

For my eighth year at Burning Man, the two-by-four of inspiration whacked me upside the head and stole away my summer free time. On evenings and weekends I've been working feverishly on an art installation called The Belligerent Blooms. With lots of help and indulgence from Jan, Bart, and encouragement from the rest of my campmates, the project is starting to take shape. There's been plenty of programming, hacking, drilling, sawing, soldering, and even a little bit of welding. The whole project is centered around an OpenSolaris-based system driving audio for this embedded application. There's no electricity out at Burning Man, and generators are noisy -- so with a bit of begging, we've managed to borrow 2 solar panels to charge the battery which runs the whole installation. For those playing along at home, that means we'll be running Sun on the Sun.

This post will (hopefully) be the first in a series about how the software and hardware of this art project was put together. The series will likely come in fits and starts as time before the event is precious -- we depart on August 26, so blogs may have to wait until we return. But, before I begin the series, there's some more begging to do...

The Belligerent Blooms need your audio contributions!

The Belligerent Blooms are a garden of cranky electro-mechanical flowers, accosting passers-by with their deeply rooted beliefs. We need your unique voices to contribute to the cacophony.

Consider what you'd say if you were a belligerent bloom -- share your experiences as part of nature, opinions about humanity in general or Burning Man participants in particular, or any other flowery invective you have to offer. Try to keep the comments short and pithy. Get a giggle, challenge world views, add your voice! Above all, be belligerent!

Contribute your flowery invective by sending mail to belligerent.blooms@gmail.com and including .wav (preferred, and easily generated by audiorecord(1)) or other audio files. Putting your quips in separate files will greatly please the gardeners. Contributions made by August 19, 2007 will be included.

If you, or someone you know attend Burning Man, the Belligerent Blooms make their home at the 'Blacklight Aquarium' theme camp. Habitat and 7:30; just look for the big spinning fish sign in the sky.

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Liane Praza

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