– shape display, interactive, programmable matter
Pin-based shape displays not only give physical form to digital information, they have the inherent ability to accurately move and manipulate objects placed on top of them. We present ideas and techniques that use the underlying shape change to give kinetic ability to otherwise inanimate objects.
The shape display can assemble, disassemble, and reassemble structures from simple passive building blocks through stacking, scaffolding, and catapulting.
Furthermore, special kinematic blocks that are actuated and sensed through the underlying pins can translate vertical pin movements into other degrees of freedom like rotation or horizontal movement. This interplay of the shape display with objects on its surface allows us to render otherwise inaccessible forms, like overhangs, and enables richer input and output.