Phoebe Sengers

Influencing Machine

Semiautonomous drawing machine

Influencing Machine

Influencing Machine

Media Files


The objective is to develop and design an experimental, interactive media system which reflects emotions and whose »emotions« can be influenced by users. Using the Influencing Machine, an interactive software system, a semiautonomous drawing program was developed. Its »emotions« are expressed through real-time scribbles similar to children’s drawings and through associated sounds. There is a physical mailbox interface through which users drop pre-prepared digitally coded postcards bearing images and colour hues representing annotated parameters of feeling, reread by a barcode reader. Intuitive interaction between a person and the system allows the user to perform a critical investigation of »emotional computing«. The design team developed methods supporting the open interpretation of the Influencing Machine. An agent architecture capable of selecting and producing various forms and styles of drawing in real time was created. The sound system combines and recombines sound clips, intended to reflect the chosen parameters of feeling in order to contribute to the overall effect. The mailbox-interface allows playful communication between user and system.

The influencing machine has been developed with in the project SAFIRA (Supporting Affective Interactions in Realtime Applications).

Artists / Authors



Germany, 2000-2002


» http://www.edutainme…hop-Papers/EDU_07.pdf


, Jun 14, 2004



Additions to Keyword List