As a member of LabSynthE (Laboratory for Electronic and Synthetic Poetry)
What: Robot Strike at UT Dallas
When: December of 2021
Where: At the School of Arts, Technology and Emerging Communication at UT Dallas.
LabSynthE organized a Robot Strike with fourteen Tobors (that’s r-o-b-o-t backwards), UTD’s personified delivery vehicles that bring orders from the app “Starship.” Giving voice to the robots, we sprayed the ground with chalked slogans like, “Access for All” and “Curb Cuts Are For Everyone.” Approximately 22 students—lab members and class peers from ATCM 4330 Culture Jamming (Fall 2021)—ordered items to the same location from the Starship in staggered time increments.
We figured out a way to keep the well-organized fleet in strike position. And, just for fun, we had all of them play “All I Want for Christmas is You” (Mariah Carey version), so there was a bit of noise, and subsequent laughing and dancing for a festive ending to the semester.
Please view our Git page for details and stencil cut-outs if you’d like to stage your own robot strike: github.com/LabSynthE/RobotStrike
In this video David articulates why we staged a strike. It was a successful first launch of the Robot Strike! project, developed in LabSynthE with Murilo Paiva-Homsi and David Adelman.
Very Important Players:
David Adelman: Voice over, script/narrative, and slogan phrases
xtine burrough: Lab director, experience director, editor
Murilo Paiva-Homsi: Conceptual development
Letícia Ferreira: Last minute props and chalk sprayer
Evan Fladager, Cynthia O’Neill, Maryam Ashkabooshi, and Maedeh Asgharpour: Good energy and participation
Class Members Participated in Production, Including:
Patrick Annett, Shajia Anwan, Worth Carlin, Safwan Chowdhury, Jackson Hawkins, Kristen Kirk, Julie Le, Dayzha Morrison, and Kelsi Tresco