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WifiTapestry
Richard Vijgen, 2017

WifiTapestry is a dynamic wall hanging that renders visible the wireless activity of a space. The tapestry unveils the ever changing ‘landscape’ of radio frequencies around us. The invisible signals from mobile phones, printers, and all kinds of smart devices leave an imprint as they try to negotiate available wireless channels. The mechanisms use a controller that listens to all traffic across 13 channels of the 2.4GHz WiFi spectrum. Whenever data is transmitted on a channel, the controller sends a current to an array of thermal elements embedded in the tapestry, converting data into heat and activating a thermochromic yarn woven into it. Streams of data transmitted through space appear as visual traces from an invisible dimension that gradually form and dissolve.