Kickstarter Project of the Week: Cosmic Quilt – Interactive Installation/Student Workshop

One of the ideas that I’ve been playing with recently is the dynamic between creativity and innovation. It’s something David Sable, the  global CEO of Y&R talks about often. While I think most would agree that the two go hand-in-hand, I’m starting to see something else as well: Innovation as creativity. Innovation of course comes in all forms and is seen in all disciplines, but usually one thinks of it from a technical aspect. Something that improves efficiency or efficacy perhaps. Creative innovation tends to be more artistic – cubism for instance.

But digital technology is combing innovation and creativity is startling new ways. Call it the New Aesthetic. Innovation, in the hands of a new breed of professionals called Creative Technologists, is taking on a startling look where the innovations themselves are beautiful or somehow embody creativity.

Take a look at this Kickstarter Project: The Cosmic Quilt

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Stunning, right?  This is a project from The Prinicipals. Based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn their studio focuses on industrial design, interactive environments and the influence of new technologies on traditional craftsmanship.

By uniting facets of architecture, fabrication and industrial design, their aim is to both define architectural environments as well as build them.

Following this approach in projects such as prototyping, production of original product lines and experimental architectures, the ultimate ambition is the design of spaces and objects that expand our understanding of the built realm without abandoning its history.

Here’s how they describe the project:

Have you ever wondered what buildings will look like in the future? If the kind of interactivity we have come to expect in our devices will ever make it’s way into the architecture we inhabit?

Soon, just as we can sense a space as calm, contemplative or frenetic, the space itself will be able to sense our presence and react accordingly.

This May, The Principals and 20 students from the Art Institute of New York will take the first step to allow the public to be able to experience this new type of architectural space.  Over 1 week, we will instruct the students in the construction of a reactive architectural environment that will open to the public during New York Design Week, May 19-21.

Students will learn to network a series of sensors, motors and micro-controllers through a unique system developed by The Principals in their Brooklyn studio.

I hope you’ll take a moment to help fund this project. If you want to see the other projects Y&R NY has funded this year, take a look at our Kickstarter profile page.

Kickstarter Projects: The Written World

For the second week of the Y&R Kickstarter program I’ve chosen to back The Written World. This project is described as a multiplayer storytelling game which lives on the Internet. 

You had me at storytelling game. I’m a big believer in both of those concepts, so when they are combined I’m always intrigued. The Written World is the brainchild of Simon Fox of playlab London, Toby Green, Anna Fogg and Shelly Lozdon. The game itself is too textured and detailed for me to explain here, so I encourage you to read the Kickstarter page, but the underlying concept delivers an innovative approach to narrative and gameplay. Here’s the video:

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There’s clearly been a tremendous amount of thought put into this, and that’s one of the key lessons of game design that I’ve learned. The pre-production time is enormous, both on the creative side and in terms of game mechanics. The Written World creators appear to be expert world builders. Take a look at the design of the game characters:

The Written World Game Character Design


The gameplay is designed around collaborative writing by both “the narrotor” and “the protagonist.” See the run of the gameplay here. Ultimately, nothing in this project feels like a rehash to me, and that’s the sort of project I’m looking to support. This one still needs a bit of your help, so please consider backing this one.

You can also read this interview of Simon Fox by Emily Short for more on the game, as well as these other posts:

The Huffington Post:

The Atlantic:

Hero by Clicking:

So it Goes: