teaching numbers to a robot
ROBO-NEUROSURGERY | 2016 | primary media: steel fabrication (CNC, torch, MIG and TIG), soapstone, microcontroller.
The robot counts the digits as I hammer them into its brain; e.g. four strikes in short succession represent the number four.

In ROBO-NEUROSURGERY I chisel the digits of π from my memory into the robot's.

I'm simultaneously carving stone and recalling π from memory. As I chisel, an Arduino microcontroller in the robot counts the strikes until there is a pause. At that point the robot has learned the digit, and says it out loud.

Doing so removes material from the stone representing the robot's brain, which records the strikes spatially but not temporally -- the exact opposite of the counting mechanism.

My intention is to address the complex nature of numerical information: the necessity that numbers refer to the physical world despite their inherent reductionism.