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Binary Counting [Processing]


Created by Joshua Noble, Chris Bierbower and Mette Lyckegaard, The Binary Counter is an interactive display and teaching tool for kids to explore the most basic building blocks of digital information: 1’s and 0’s. The team broke a byte into its 8 bits and gave each a physical and visual representation using motors and LEDs.

The Binary Counter uses movement to show the pattern of changing values for each location in the byte as the exhibit counts up. Kids watch as the card for each bit flips in front of them as they spin a large dial incrementing the decimal number on the screen. As they begin to understand the pattern, they can press corresponding buttons to change the value of each bit and see the resulting number calculated instantly.

This is a CIID Physical Computing project created under Massimo Banzi, David Gauthier and David Mellis.

Photos by Chris Bierbower

  • Sara Levandusky Reinthaler

    this is great! do you have a list of materials and instructions – I would love to make something like this for teaching my elementary students about binary.