Space Replay - Art Or Rover?

This scary, menacing black sphere is an art project called "Space Replay", designed by Francesco Tacchini, Julinka Ebhardt and Will Yates-Johnson. Rather than being designed as a surveillance drone or interplanetary explorer, it is actually a hovering presence that records and then plays back the sounds of drab public spaces. Enjoy the video.

(Space Replay the art of sound in spaces video)

The sphere responds sonically to people and its surroundings by means of a battery-powered Arduino, an Adafruit Wave Shield hacked to record and playback audio on-the-fly and a small speaker. These were inserted into a latex balloon after being vacuum formed in plastic in the shape of a cone in order to enhance the sound coming from the speaker and protect the balloon from the wires and PCB edges.

The balloon was filled with enough helium to be able to lift everything and hover, reaching its buoyancy point. The final and lightest prototype weights 120g, comprising of electronics, packaging and balloon.

I hope there are at least a few SF fans who remember The Prisoner, a 1960's series, in which menacing spherical Rovers would roam the landscape. They could alter their size and were equipped with toxins to incapacitate prisoners.

(The Rover seeks its prey)

So at least the Space Replay art project is not armed. That's probably for the best.

From Space Replay.

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