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Ceramic Circuits

2023 Design Platform, NUS DID

Glazed ceramic is a versatile material and people use it everyday. Rather than develop new electronic devices, what if we could use these everyday ceramic objects as computational interfaces? In this platform, students explored embedding interactive circuits into ceramic objects based on research developed by the Interactive Materials Lab. From these explorations, they conceptualized and built a range of applications for everyday ceramic interfaces.

Student Projects

Adam Choo Wen Wu, Teo Tze Yang, Vina Setiawaty

Techtile redefines the way we interact with tiles. Specialized sandblasting techniques and LED backlighting are used to create projections of different shapes and icons on everyday tiles, while maintaining their unassuming look when unlit. The different stages of interaction can then be mapped to different lighting effects when users approach and touch the tiles. Techtile introduces a new interaction design concept that has many applications with the abundance of tiled settings, and can be built upon to discover new visual feedback associated with physical interaction.

Plant Pulse
Jerome Jimmy Wong, Joshua Tan Jianhao, Ang Zi Yi Hannah

"Plant Pulse asks the question: ""What if we could give a voice to plants?"". Through ceramic circuits, we incorporated a moisture sensor and light sensor directly into the pot's surface. By connecting the pot to a 3D printed platform embedded with speakers and electronics, it deciphers the data inputs from the triggered sensors to create sounds that enable the plant to voice its vitals and needs. When you initiate a ""handshake"" or petting motion on the plant, it growls when it is too dark, or whines when it needs water. If the plant is in dire need it will skip your initiation and proactively communicate to you. Be more connected to your plant by learning its’s voice, to find out how it is doing in advance before it reaches those critical levels where it will sound out by itself!"

Ong Zhi Kai Douglas, Ong Yong Qing, Zeng Zhihan

Ceramuse is a novel way of human-ceramic interaction, where it aims to engage the kidlike novelty of interacting with objects and obtaining an unexpected outcome. Unique to ceramics, the natural resonance bolsters the interaction, where no two vessels sound the same. Through implementing Arduino and Max/MSP as a sound synthesizer, the natural resonance of ceramics informs the musical response, thereby injecting an element of surprise into the experience.

Pang Xue Le Cheryl, Eu Hui Sin, Sim Zhi-Yi Jared

Rethinking the mundane, STACK is an interactive installation inspired by our natural urge to stack and organize things. This installation encourages you to throw away your fear of breaking ceramics, hence elevating the seemingly ordinary and frequently unnoticed practice of stacking ceramic vessels. Stack, tilt, and rotate. By continuously reconfiguring the cups, it seamlessly translates into a virtual projection that differs from our reality. Hence, blurring the line between reality and virtual magic.

Wang Fan, Jonathan Lau, Gazal Mathur

Enhance Your Nighttime Routine with SleePlate. SleePlate is designed to provide a more peaceful nighttime experience for those looking to cultivate healthier habits. Through conductive ink, SleePlate extends the touch points of your smartphone to a ceramic plate, eliminating the need for additional hardware. This innovative technology allows users to interact with the plate's lines and patterns, which in turn generate soothing music tailored to their preferences, helping individuals achieve better rest before sleep.

Wang Yixian, Chloe Chong Wen Jing, Chan Shao Kaye

Inyo is a pair of connected diffusers that uses the power of fragrance to bring you closer to your loved one's presence. Each half holds an essential oil bottle with a chosen scent that reminds them of their partner. One person can tilt their essential oil bottle, allowing a drop of their partner's scent to fall onto the ceramic plate. On the other side of the world, Inyo's sister device will respond automatically, mirroring the gesture by tilting its oil bottle to create the familiar experience of sharing a physical space. The scented oil droplet that falls directly onto the plate acts as a conductor of electricity, completing the moisture sensor circuit embedded on the plate’s surface. This activates the heating element at its base. Leveraging on ceramic’s excellent thermal properties, the plate uniformly and efficiently heats up, accelerating the diffusion of the scent in space. As the scented oil evaporates over time, it will eventually dry up, turning off the moisture sensor. The system will then deactivate the heating element, making the whole experience effortless and worry-free. Inyo makes the act of connecting with your loved one a subtle and sensory experience that is integrated into our living spaces. You’ll feel connected to your loved ones, no matter the physical distance.

Wong He Kai, Gan Jie Lin, Liu Xinxin

Imagine a design service that converts ceremonial tea sets into modern home devices, extracting ceramic sherds and imbuing them with haptics and functionality to serve as smart home interfaces and conversation pieces. RePiece takes cues from contemporary UI to inform the button forms and arrangement, its layout is designed to echo the original topology of the teapot, and recognisable affordances like the teapot lid are re-contextualised into electric dials, bridging old and new through a reimagining of utility.

Copyright 2024 Clement Zheng