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Customized Automation Solutions

Automation for Projects in Art, Exhibitions, Theater

Based on the experience with automation in general, and in collaboration with companies for mechanics, electronics, stage design, web design, graphics, photography and much more within the Genossenschaft Gleis 70 where plan44.ch has its office and lab, we also build efficient customized automation solutions for art projects, exhibitions and theater.

Whenever possible, plan44.ch uses open source software and hardware, and publishes own work as open source. This allows everyone free experimenting with and improving of what's already there, and ensures other people can take up, modify and evolve projects according to their wishes and needs. We think that's the best way to ensure software lives as long as it has users, even beyond a particular company or person's capacity to maintain it.

Examples

ETH Digital Platform: For this platform, designed by Zurich based design studio Klauser Lienhard, plan44.ch could develop all electronics and also produced it in-house in cooperation with Planetarium Zürich.
In total 70 OpenWrt Linux devices based on the Omega2S SoC module control the illumination in the 35 glass floor elements, the 18 elements of the 19m long scrolling RGB LED display as well as the interactive LED effects. The elements of the platforms are connected together with a single power cord and a single ethernet cable only; the synchronisation of text and effects are realized in software and thus can be easily rearranged.
The design of the controller hardware as well as all software is open source.
Onion also published the project as a case study about an Omega2S application on their site.

  • ETH Digital Platform - Image © Jon Etter
  • ETH Digital Platform - test assembly - inside view
  • ETH Digital Platform - colored scroll text with graphic elements

glocken2: Custom electronic clock driving real antique bells installed in various restaurants of Bindella Terra Vite Vita. With BLE remote control for test and setup. Mechanics and design of bell mounts by a-faire and Schwitters Raum, electronics and software by plan44.ch. Photos shows the bell installation in Gerberstube Schaffhausen.

Märlifee: Revival of a Seventies "Märlitisch" (fairy tale teller table) for childern - used to work with a multi track tape drive. Tape drive mechanics were exchanged with a Raspberry Pi running plan44.ch automation daemon to play MP3s from a USB stick upon press of the original start button.

MixShelf: Webcam on a rail along a shelf, can be moved via web interface to explore the shelf's content. Integration with digitalSTROM lights in the room.