Design and research
Project Octopus

de fr


Nothing is more permanent than change



The project octopus aims at creating a new type of objects which replace the static predefined visual appearance of normal objects with the capability to continuously change its surface patterns. These patterns are displayed by an active object surface and change their behavior both due to changes in the objects‘s internal state and to interaction. By driving the image generation process using algorithms derived from artificial life and complex systems a wide variety of surprising and organic looking patterns can be generated. By choosing appropriate sensors these patterns may respond to body temperature, skin resistance, or pulse frequency and therefore reflect the emotional state of a user.


... adornment and meaning always stroll together. Old writings served both as decoration and message.
[Thomas Mann: Doktor Faustus]



The capability of products to transform user input and environmental influences into visible patterns gives raise to intuitive forms of communication which eventually leads to a strengthening of the emotional bond of a user to a product. Several products which possess this technology are able to communicate among each other. By this way they can exchange algorithms and modify or initiate pattern formation processes.

fluid funk

God used beautiful mathematics in creating the world.
[Paul Dirac]



Products which respond to its owner in similar ways as animals do mimic some characteristics of living organisms [life like products] and are highly customizable. By combining a variety of sensors diverse artifacts can be developed which detect and respond to different types of user emotions. In addition, users can increase the variety and individuality of their objects by exchanging algorithms.