24 Drones is a video demonstration of the incredible drones made by Rhizomatiks and their ability to move around 3d space in ways never before seen. With intricate sensor systems both on the drones and in the room the drones are constantly checking their surroundings and mapping them in order to move without colliding with each other or a speaker who stands in the middle of the swarm of drones directing them with gestures and movements. The movement of the drones is not only controlled and safer than ever, the drones awareness of their surroundings makes them appear conscious and gives them a sense of personality.
Made by Daito Manabe and Motoi Ishibashi and their team at Rhizomatiks Research along with Marco Tempest of Magic Lab the project set out to showcase the incredible drones made by Rhizomatiks and explore what the technology means for art and performances using the automated drones. As Marco Tempest explains the idea of illusions in the modern world where technology makes anything possible, the drones fly around in playful manners exhibiting the their ability to create the illusion of character and personality in machines through the interactive movements.
The site for the project discusses the goals of the project stating
“Our goal is to create an intimate interaction between man and machine and explore the anthropomorphisation of technology, an illusion with far reaching consequences as we share our world with an increasing number of thinking machines and digital devices. “ Drone Magic with Rhizomatiks Research
The team also states the importance of the timing of the piece saying
“It’s a timely demonstration as legislation about the use and safety of flying drones is being debated around the world.” Drone Magic with Rhizomatiks Research
Now that drones are becoming a regularity and further uses for the flying machines are explored every day the concept of how we will interact with these machines as they evolve is ever crucial. Matthew Reynolds of wired talked about the piece and the importance of exploring safety and interaction with drones stating
“As drones become more ubiquitous, controlling them safely will become increasingly important. The technology is already being trialed for deliveries and used in film-making, with some envisioning a future of flying compasses and intelligent parasols.”Reynolds, Matthew(2016, Feb 9) Watch 24 drones fly in mesmerising unison
With the ever changing world of technology and machines the idea of how humans interact with it all is a crucial concept and will be discussed more and more as machines and tech are further incorporated into our lives. 24 drones explores this idea and with the impressive show of programming the drones movements create the illusion of personality, one that we readily accept as we watch the drones. Humans have the urge to connect with the objects we interact with and this includes machines and tech and the work that Rhizomatiks has done with their drones takes this connection to another level. This new method of interaction that sees us interacting with the tech in a shared space, creates a new manner in which humans can communicate with technology and satisfy our urge to connect with the objects on a more intimate level
24 Drones shares the same exploration of human interaction with drones and the beauty that is possible with the intimate interactions between man and machine as one of Rhizomatiks previous works from a year earlier with the same name where the drones are interacting and dancing with three human dancers. The close shared space and hypnotic movement of the drones and the dancers is a perfect and poetic example of the possibilities of human-computer interaction.
The work done by Rhizomatiks shares the same exploration of interaction with machines and the collaborative possibilities that form when humans and machines connect that is explored and displayed by artist Sougwen Chung and D.O.U.G. her drawing robot. By drawing together with D.O.U.G. Sougwen shows the character and personality that shines through the robot as it draws along with her creating its own unique style of drawing and an entirely new work of art.Both pieces look at the possibilities of personalities forming in machines through empathetic and reflective reactions. However, similar to the project with the dancers, D.O.U.G. is mainly focused on the collaboration that is born when autonomous machines work with humans to interpret and create new works of collaborative art.