textiles made from computer binary data by phillip stearns textiles made from computer binary data by phillip stearns
aug 14, 2013

textiles made from computer binary data by phillip stearns

fragmented memory: textiles made from a computer’s physical memory by phillip stearns
all images courtesy phillip stearns

 

 

‘fragmented memory’, the triptych of large woven tapestries by brooklyn-based media artist phillip stearns uses digital practices to render invisible processes into tangible objects, a method operating as tactile and lo-fi digital storage media that can capture, record, and transmit data. the project draws a snapshot of stearns’ computer’s physical memory extracted from a core system dump; three selections of the binary data converted into images using custom software which groups 6 bits into RGB pixel color values (2 bits per channel).

 

the resulting 64 hues in the images are then mapped to a custom woven color palette created by mixing 8 colors of yarn using variations on a satin weave. the patterns are then woven on a computerized industrial jacquard loom. because of the direct mappings from binary data to image, and from image to woven pattern, it’s actually possible to decode the original binary information sourced from the computer’s physical memory.

 

 

fragmented memory process
video courtesy phillip stearns

 

 

the process operates as tactile and lo-fi digital storage media that can capture, record, and transmit data

 

 

a snapshot of stearns’ computer’s physical memory extracted from a core system dump, translated into patterns

 

 

binary data is converted to images using custom software which groups 6 bits into RGB pixel color values

 

 

the resulting patterns are woven on a computerized industrial jacquard loom

 

 

 it’s actually possible to decode the original binary data because of the direct mappings

 

 

pattern variations from binary data

 

[h/t] creative applications

  • Love the concept of using technology to create the pixelated patterns. It would be interesting to actually create patterns with “real” stories embedded in the nonrandom binary data, however that would be far more difficult to do and might be a little scary. I wonder how many computer eperts will try and decipher the codes in the textiles? The textiles would make awesome throw blankets for couches, placemats, and rugs – to name just a few applications. I can’t wait to see it in action.

    Evelyn M says:
  • Wow, those are wonderfully appealing patterns & colors!

    Seth Joseph Weine says:
  • This loom could be used to make fabric scores like those produced by the Music Animation Machine.

    Stephen Malinowski says:
  • I have made quilts with various cryptograms in the patterns but this is the BEST!! 🙂

    Cyndy Davis says:

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

comments policy
LOG IN
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

PRODUCT LIBRARY

a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

technology news