Pier 9: DRM Countertop Bacon Extruder




Introduction: Pier 9: DRM Countertop Bacon Extruder

About: Artifact Designer at Institute for the Future, and Pier 9 AiR

The year is 2028. AI and cybernetically augmented pigs have teamed up to make money on lab grown meat. After centuries of factory farming, the pigs are fed up with exploitation by humans. With the help the latest animal-computer interfaces and AI collaborators, the pigs were able to design manufacture a countertop bacon extruder. The machine is charged with proprietary capsules that contain pig DNA, and all required growing substrates and nutrients are used in the machine, similar to how a Keurig coffee maker works. In this world, the pigs' AI lawyers have secured rights over all pig DNA, making it illegal for third parties to sell pig DNA, or any pig products without consent and expensive licensing fees from the pigs. In this future, the only way to eat bacon is through this proprietary system that ultimately makes the pigs filthy rich.

This DRM Bacon Extruder an Artifact from the Future, created as part of a series of objects titled Animals Doing Capitalism. For step-by-step instructions on crafting your own Artifacts from the Future, or if you’re wondering why animals have taken to capitalism, see: https://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-Make-Arti...

If you want to Craft your own DRM Bacon Extruder, You'll need the following tools and materials:

  • Autodesk Inventor 360, or similar 3D modeling Software
  • 3D printer
  • Bondo, Primer, Spray Paint
  • Sand Paper
  • Acrylic Sheet, Laser Cutter
  • Raspberry Pi, LCD Display
  • Arduino, Neo Pixel LED Lights
  • Soldering Iron, Wire, Buttons and Knobs
  • Power Supply
  • Insulated Glass Water Bottles
  • Fake Bacon

Step 1: Sketches, Prototyping, and Modeling

The first step of the process was to sketch out the idea, then make a 3D model of it. It helps to take inspiration from other kitchen appliances.

Step 2: Presentation and Feedback Session

The model was photoshopped into a kitchen setting, and presented at an art critique at the Pier 9 Artist in Residency. It is really helpful to share ideas, and get feedback on how you can improve.

Step 3: Bacon Extruder Version 2

The initial design was improved based on feedback from the critique. It was pointed out how it isn't immediately obvious that this is a countertop lab-grown bacon extruder with DRM bacon pods that are exclusively licensed by pigs. To help embed that story in the object, a display screen was added to the design, and this was modeled in Fusion 360.

A vertical display screen was feeling sort of weird. Further design exploration added a second glass incubation chamber, which made room to put a horizontally-oriented screen along the bottom. Analog buttons give the appliance a nice retro-futures feel.

At this step, it was important to consider the size of electronics and glass incubation chambers. Screens, LED lights, and double-wall glass water bottles were ordered, measured, and incorporated into the design.

Step 4: Printing and Finishing the Final Model

The final design was printed using ABS on a Fortus 3D printer.

The electronics, and glass were checked for fit.

The 3D print was covered in Bondo, sanded, primed, sanded, primed, sanded again, etc.

Once a nice smooth finish was achieved, the final model was pained with Montana Colors 94 spray paint - really great stuff!

Step 5: Soldering and Programming

The LCD screen is driven by a Raspberry Pi, and the Neo Pixel LEDs are driven by an Arduino.

The LED code is based on Scott's Neopixel libraries, available here: https://github.com/scottkildall/NeoPixel-Samples

The Raspberry Pi code was cobbled together from several different sources, final code available soon!

Thanks @ Pier 9's Blue for helping with the photography!

Step 6: DRM Countertop Bacon Extruder

DRM Countertop Bacon Extruder complete. When you turn the knob, the screen cycles through different images showing the extruding process, and providing some backstory on how the nutrient charger pods are proprietary and must be licensed directly from the pigs.

Now this leads to the question, would you buy bacon from a pig?

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    3 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Apparently some pigs are more equal than others, but I'll bet they taste the same.


    2 years ago

    If your input was colloidal pig dna coiled on a spool, you could arrange to have this device actually deliver cooked bacon. Of course, until such a thing were available, you'd need to roll your own using commercially-distributed pig dna cartridges available at your local supermarket.


    2 years ago

    Very cool and really funny. A future of sentient pig rulers, hopefully they won't eat humans.