Swarm Robotics in Performance


Vision Forum is developing a project to use swarm robotics in performance with Bristol Robotics Lab.

The project focuses on developing technology and content for a robotic, light, sound and video performances based on digital swarm behaviour:

1. In the centre of the space is a small “pond” for the swarm robots. These interact with one another based on given, pre-programmed parameters – their “choreography.” They also learn so that their interactions change over time.
2a.  In the space there are also 2-3 video projections.
2b. There is a sound producing computer.
2c.  There are also dmx-lights in the space.
All three outputs are controlled/influenced by the movements of the robots in the swarm. The light, image and sound have pre-programmed patterns, but these patterns change depending on the behaviour of the swarms.
3. The robots in the swarm are also responding to sound and lights produced creating a complex emergent system.

The three systems are in short dependent on one another and since the robots have the ability to learn and to act differently over time, the performance will be generative and change throughout the duration of the show. There will also have certain thresholds/critical levels: for instance when the sound, video or light will reach a certain level, it can for instance start the lasers or specific sound patterns which will have a clear impact on the movement of the swarm. (This effect also means that the movement and noise produced by the audience will have an impact on the dynamic of the system.)

More info soon.