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LED Growlights for your aquaponics system

Posted on August 8th, 2012

Lately I’m investigating what good LED Growlights are and why. If you know this it is easier to choose between professional suppliers and suppliers just lifting with the hype.
At Mediamatic Carlos Portella (an intern who works with me) is testing difference in spectra of LED grow lights samples. He is doing this with a DIY spectrometer, when using this it’s important to take your time for a proper calibration. We ordered the LED bars in Shenzhen (china). You can also order them in The Netherlands but you probably end up in a web shop that has his back orders in the same town. So if your planning to order bigger quantities it might be interesting to order directly an the source.

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Carlos taking a look at the change of frequency (blue)

When looking for grow lights think about what you want to grow and then look what colors work best with this type of plants.
Typically plants make good use of blue and red light for the photosynthesis. For blue 440nm is a wavelength you would be looking for and 660nm for the reds.
To know how much light you need to place above your plants look in the specs for the PAR (photosynthesis active radiation) you will find this in uMol/m2/s (micromol, square meter,second).
After doing some research we found the sun provides on a clear and warm day about 2000 uMol/m2/s. You probably do not need to create this amount of PAR for you plants, typically herb-like plants would have an optimal photosynthesis at 500 uMol/m2/s, after this point the plants will be oversaturated and this will very likely have a negative effect on growth.

To be continued…

What about openFrameworks

Posted on February 1st, 2011

What is openFrameworks?

oF (openFrameworks) is a collection of classes and methods that simplify writing programs in C++.
Those packages with classes and methods are called addons. You can include an addon into your software and this way use all of its capabilities.
oF comes with a set of main addons that are commonly used and well tested. One example is the ofSimpleXML addon that helps you with parsing your xml and making xml files.
This is one of the addons that I’m using in my twitterEmeter app.
Because oF has an open community everyone can contribute by making new addons that fit their personal needs and by sharing them online we can all benefit from this.
A platform called github (https://github.com/) is a common used way of sharing code with others.
oF has a growing community, his community is important for the applicability of it. Where new media platforms are born new addons are made.

Why and when to use oF?

I would say, use it if you need the software to be powerful: If you need fast and accurate responses or if you need to progress large amounts of data for example with video processing.
oF is not the best tool for parsing data like I did because the addons are not really providing a lot in this field.
C++ is definitely not the easiest way to go for mainly because of its sometimes complicated syntax. You have to keep in mind a lot of things like memory household for instance.
The java based platform Processing has a far more natural human language so to say. oF is also doing a great job with this natural coding but still a bit more advanced with more complex error messages.
An other good thing of oF is its stability. If your program runs and you didn’t make stupid mistakes your program is less likely to crash. This also depends on the quality of the addons your using.

ikStaar installation @Dev Camp 2010

Posted on December 22nd, 2010

Dev Camp is an open playground for new-media lovers. You get five days to make an  interactive installation and you get a stage to present it.

Together with Axel Roest , Seth Hunter, Luis Rodil-Fernandez we designed and build a ‘stare off’ installation.
The extraordinary about this stare-off contest is that the moment of failure is captured. The loser is given the choice to save this moment. If he chooses to do so the video appears in a video grid that is projected on the wall.

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Upcoming Maestro

Posted on December 5th, 2010

This is a visual of Maestro taking over the pin system for its security issues. This transition will be finalized in 2012, that’s why I choose this movie poster. The assignment was for a business presentation concerning this subject.

2012

Je Naaste: Interactive art installation

Posted on October 24th, 2010

Together with Els Engel I helped Roberta Petzoldt with her graduation project for the Gerrit Rietveld Academy here in Amsterdam. We build the technical part. The installation works as follows: There is a setup with from left to right: spotlight, chair, translucent projection surface, beamer. When you sit on this chair there appears a person in your shadow. This is Roberta and she starts to read you a poem after a couple of seconds. 

Je Naaste
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