A Berry College student's final project will be featured at Georgia Tech's TechArts Festival starting Friday, April 12.
The 2013 festival will showcase works that merge art and technology, as well as works that are solely artistic in nature. Bit Dome, a project by Berry student Zane Cochran, is a 360 degree environment of light and sound. The 10-foot diameter structure was also recently featured in the online magazine Hackaday.com (http://hackaday.com/2013/03/08/putting-yourself-inside-a-display/), which publishes modifications of a product or software into a new creation.
Cochran, who has a bachelor's degree in public relations, enrolled at Berry to take the requisite computer science courses for graduate school. He has been accepted at Georgia Tech and Clemson University. The Bit Dome project came from his work in Berry's physical computing class. Students were asked to create something tangible and interactive that could sense world around it and react to it.
He wanted to create an enclosed and isolated space geared toward making people happy. The Bit Dome on Berry's campus is the first model. It is made of over a hundred triangles made of a foam insulation sheet. The dome is about 10 feet in diameter and 7.5 feet tall. He incorporated RGB LED lights at each point which react to body movement and create different colors. It took about a month and a half to complete the dome and write the 6,000 lines of code that went into the program.
He made the program so that others could use his work as a foundation and write their own simple programs to use in the dome. Cochran had the concept of the Bit Dome in the works since his trip to Korea last summer.
"In Korea, technology is often used for fun and enjoyment rather than practicality," said Cochran. "Even in the most trivial aspects of technology there were things that would brighten your day."
This summer, Cochran is traveling to Liberia to teach computer science to underprivileged students. Also a professional photographer, Cochran recently published his eighth book of photography. To learn more about the Bit Dome visit zanecochran.com<http://zanecochran.com>.
Article by Student Public Relations Assistant Katherine McDonald