“Words of a Middle Man” is a project by Christoph Steinlehner, Lino Teuteberg and Jeremias Volker at the Univerity of Applied Sciences in Potsdam. The project includes a wireless router which analyses the communication on its own network and reinterprets it on a computer display into a “natural” language.
The device watches the communication between all the connected – people, devices and servers and the messages or their activities are translated into “natural” language, making it human-readable and understandable. The narrative is to shed light on activity and content of human-computer dialogues conducted.
Wi-Fi routers are the link to the Internet and thus the local hub of our digital communications. We send e-mail via them, establish connections to other devices or visit websites. In careless interaction with our computers, we assume that the network traffic is handled quietly and confidentially by the wireless router. In this space, the intimacy of digital wireless router stands as a silent observer.
The project describes a scenario where the wireless router is taken out of it’s shadowy existence and actively communicates its function. Devices, servers and their users are the protagonist in a continuous dialogue with one another.
The housing is made of laser cut acrylic plates, which then glued, filled and painted. The display is an E-Ink display and comes from an Amazon Kindle. The program for reading and analyzing the data network is running on an external computer, which sends over a socket connection which is then read on the Kindle located inside the object.
Posted on: 03/07/2012