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Outrace

Robots write your messages in light over Trafalgar Square

by Jacob Resneck in Tech on 25 August 2010

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An upcoming collaboration between revered German automaker Audi and Swedish-German design firm Kram/Weisshaar turns London's Trafalgar Square into an interactive message center. Called Outrace, the installation uses eight industrial robots from Audi's production line to deliver messages sent from people around the world as 3D lighting graphics.

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Part of the nine-day London Design Festival the concept invites visitors to log on to the project website with any mobile device or computer to take part.

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Like Nike's massive "Write The Headline" campaign that took over the façade of a Johannesburg skyscraper earlier this year, those who submit should choose their words carefully given that they potentially have London's seven million inhabitants as the audience.

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The project explores ways to integrate innovative technology within the arts, using LEDs to scroll out user messages by attaching the powerful light heads to the mechanical arms of the robots. A long-exposure camera will capture the resulting light traces, creating videos of the user messages so that participants can share their experience across their social media platforms.

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Months in the making, Outrace will operate daily from 17 September through 23 September.

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