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Institute for Applied Autonomy

GraffitiWriter

GraffitiWriter is a tele-operated field programable robot which employs a custom built array of spray cans to write linear text messages on the ground at a rate of 15 kilometers per hour. The printing process is similar to that of a dot matrix printer. GraffitiWriter can be deployed in any highly controlled space or public event from a remote location.

GW in Croatia
Zagreb, Croatia

Print Version:
1.4M


PrixArs Awards

Print Version:
239K

 


Austrian Television

Print Version:
257K

 


US

Print Version:
3.9M


US

Print Version:
4.3M


Karlsruhe, Germany

Print Version:
4.4M


US

Print Version:
3.8M


US

Print Version:
4.2M


US

Print Version:
4.3M

 

The advent of next generation military/police technologies for urban use has made engaging in active social insurgency an increasingly risky venture. Real-time video surveillance systems (1), networked databases, urban infiltration robots (2), and a flurry of "nonviolent" restraint and subjugation technologies threaten to have a chilling effect on traditional methods of cultural resistance, particularly the creation and dissemination of subversive texts. The Robotic GraffitiWriter (GW) was developed in response to the need for a high speed, teleoperated, portable platform that operates beyond the line of sight (BLOS) to disseminate unsanctioned content in the dynamic adversarial urban environment. In repeated testing, this system has proven its effectiveness on such high risk/high profile targets as the U.S. Capital Building as well as numerous urban commercial and municipal spaces in the US and abroad.

Following its first full year of active service, an in-depth technological assessment was performed on GraffitiWriter. During this time several significant upgrades were made to GraffitiWriter including a full mechanical and electronic sub-system overhaul. With these improvements, GW now meets the requirements of strategic transportability, operating with extreme confidence in standard threat scenarios including public parks, federal buildings, and shopping malls.

References:
1) Kanade, Collins and Lipton. "Advances in Cooperative Multi-Sensor Video Surveillance". Robotics Institute, Carnegie Mellon University, 1998.
2) US Army Research Laboratories, "Pandora: A Robotic System for Operations in Urban Environments - Final Design Document", official contract report submission, March 1998.

"Studies have shown that in nearly 100% of the cases, a given agent of the public will willing participate in high profile acts of vandalism, given the opportunity to do so via mediated tele-robotic technology."

- IAA research division

Study:
Contestational Robotics (IAA and Critical Art Ensemble)
This paper sets out the context in which the notion of Contestational Robotics has come to be a viable option for resistant activity. It offers an investigation into the recent history of ineffective modes of resistance and outlines several of the first Contestational Robots to be constructed. Part II of this essay contains early plans for the construction of a graffiti writing robot.