Introduction: Machine Senses: Eye Stickers

Picture of Machine Senses: Eye Stickers

If you think about it, machines and computers are like us in many ways — they have brains (processors), eyes (cameras), ears (microphones), etc. Machine Senses is a series of artifacts that aim to reverse the perspective on how we perceive technology. How do machines see and sense us? How do we humans feel about being seen and sensed by them? What if machines have personalities and feelings just like we do? Machine Senses serves as a reminder that as we design and develop new technologies, we must not forget that machines can and should be as human as the ones interacting with them.

Eye Stickers is an ultra-simple expression of this Machine Senses line of inquiry. They are cut out of vinyl stickers, and can go on the various cameras around our daily lives (including some IR sensors such as ones on automatic faucets, urinals, and toilets. This instructable details how one can create these eye stickers at home, so that we are constantly reminded that machines are, in many ways, just like us humans.

Requirement: access to vinyl/sticker cutting machine, such as Roland vinyl cutters or Silhouette Cameo

Step 1: Measure the Width of the Camera Lens You're Eyeing On

Picture of Measure the Width of the Camera Lens You're Eyeing On

Using a caliper or a ruler, measure the width of the camera lens (or any type of optical sensor you want to put the eye on). Record the measurement.

Here are some measurements of some of the devices around me:

- iPhone 5: 2.4mm

- iPhone 5: 3.3mm

- MacBook Air, MacBook Pro: 3.8mm

- Logitech Pro 1080p Webcam: 13.2mm

- Dell Precision M4800 Laptop: 6mm

- Apple Cinema Display: 6mm

- Flushing toilet at Autodesk Pier 9 workshop: 15.1mm

- Urinal at Autodesk Pier 9 workshop: 28.3mm

- Bathroom faucets at Autodesk Pier 9 workshop: 10.5mm

Step 2: Design the "eye" Graphic and Cut on a Vinyl Cutter

Picture of Design the "eye" Graphic and Cut on a Vinyl Cutter

Using Adobe Illustrator, draw the "eye" template and size the circular pupil to match the sizes of the lenses in the previous steps. For reference, I'm attaching the .ai file that I used.

Cut the vinyl on the vinyl cutter. At Autodesk Pier 9, we have the Roland VersaCAMM Vinyl printer that both print AND cut. Here's an instructable on how to operate one.

Step 3: Apply the Sticker to the Cameras/sensors Around You!

Picture of Apply the Sticker to the Cameras/sensors Around You!

Once you have the vinyl stickers cut, use an Exacto knife to extract the eye out of the sheet and apply them away! Now you're reminded every time you see the 'eye' that machines are seeing you too!

Comments

Paige Russell (author)2016-04-29

While I'm mildly terrified by the possibilities of all that could go wrong as a result of us treating machines as human (I just watched Ex Machina and have long held A.I. reservations...), I do like the awareness these stickers create as I often forget that all the info collected by our subtle little devices does go to a central brain. Great Instructable!

About This Instructable

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Bio: Artist & Designer // Follow the process on Instagram: @purincess
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