Twitter blows up a bird. By mapping the recent tweet frequency around a topic to the size of a bird's body, the Exploding Twit Bird raises questions around the time that we spend discussing different topics in social media.
This project was implemented by pairing Arduino, PHP, Processing and an AC Triac relay to control the air compressor. By tweeting the term @explodingtwit and a search term, and then pressing a button, the user can see the bird expand to reflect the frequency with which the term is used in the Twitterverse. In this project, I worked to create a physical visualization that was both critical in nature, but open to being used with different topics and different individuals. I find the role of social media in our lives to be a particularly interesting area to explore, particularly as services like Facebook and Twitter become ever more intwined with our lives. As these forms of media have risen, other forms, such as traditional news outlets, struggle to stay relevant and captivating in our lives. But how much tweeting is too much tweeting? When do all these little updates become white noise, and when do they become destructive in society?
For a paper discussing the project’s inspirations, implications, construction, interaction, user feedback and future developments, check out the .pdf file at http://www.kennethroraback.com/Exploding-Twit-Bird.pdf
Some Previous Blog Posts about the Exploding Twit Bird:
Last week was nothing but woes: http://yg.typepad.com/pcomp/2010/12/a-sad-week-for-the-exploding-twit-bird.html
Prototyping from the previous week: http://yg.typepad.com/pcomp/2010/12/more-prototypes-exploding-twit-bird.html
Initial prototypes and thinking around the Exploding Twit Bird: http://yg.typepad.com/pcomp/2010/11/prototyping-the-inflatabledeflatableexplodable-twitter-bird.html
If you would like to view all of my blog entries, check out: http://yg.typepad.com/pcomp/kenneth-roraback/
And my introductory post is at: http://yg.typepad.com/pcomp/2010/09/whats-your-favorite-music-video-of-all-time.html
Lastly, you can check out my portfolio site at: www.kennethroraback.com
As for this project, I would love to hear your ideas for how I can push it forward, other directions I can go with it, and whether you find it an effective visualization. What could make it stronger?