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Immaterials: light painting WiFi

Immaterials: light painting WiFi
“The complex technologies the networked city relies upon to produce its effects remain distressingly opaque, even to those exposed to them on a daily basis.” – Adam Greenfield (2009) Immaterials: light painting WiFi film by Timo Arnall, Jørn Knutsen and Einar Sneve Martinussen. This project explores the invisible terrain of WiFi networks in urban spaces by light painting signal strength in long-exposure photographs. This builds on a technique that was invented for the 2009 film ‘Immaterials: the Ghost in the Field’ which probed the edges of the invisible fields that surround RFID readers and tags in the world. While we were mapping out tiny RFID fields, we wondered what it would be like to apply the light painting process to larger-scale fields of Bluetooth, WiFi, GSM and 3G. We built the WiFi measuring rod, a 4-metre tall probe containing 80 lights that respond to the Received Signal Strength (RSSI) of a particular WiFi network. Lots more visualisations and ‘making of’ pictures. Related: