Ken Goldberg is one of the pioneers of telematic works, and "Ouija 2000" is not only a playful stab at the idea of global mind through the nostalgia of a Ouija board, it introduces important elements of real-time collaboration.
"Ouija 2000" consists of a game board located in situ with its pointer mounted on a robotic arm and a webcam view of the board. In contrast to most teleoperation systems where a single user controls a single robot, with "Ouija 2000" participants logging on to the Web site are given instructions for using their computer mouse to interact with up to twenty other live players to collaboratively control a single industrial robot arm--and the board planchette. The game-program calculates the collective movement of online participants' mice to determine the correct answer to point to.
Website commissioned by the University of California Berkeley Art Museum and originally presented as Ken Goldberg/MATRIX 186/Ouija 2000. Courtesy Catherine Clark Gallery, San Francisco
Project team: Billy Chen, Rory Solomon, Steve Bui, Bobak Farzin, Jacob Heitler, Derek Poon, Gordon Smith; Graphic design: Gil Gershoni; Illustration: Dave Garvey; Flash: Paulina Wallenberg Olsson