Created by the MIT Media Labs’ Tangible Media Group in collaboration with MIT’s Deptartment of Chemical Engineering, RCA and New Balance, bioLogic explores opportunities around developing new forms of interface using biology instead of circuitry. The team are imagining a world where actuators and sensors can be grown rather than manufactured, and have developed living actuators as a bio-skin that responds to the body's changing temperature and moisture.
A millennium ago, a Japanese samurai’s quest into battle took an unexpected turn. An abrupt attack in the midst of an evening meal led to a surprising culinary discovery. What was found on his journey was a previously undiscovered bacteria, Bacillus Subtilis natto. The microorganism lived inside dry rice stalks, which were woven into bags to carry soybeans in that age. Ever since this coincidental unearthing, the mysterious bacteria has become an established fermentation tool for the preparation of nattō, a soybean-based dish in Japan. A thousand years into the future, a new behavior of the ancient bacteria has been unearthed: the expansion and contraction of the natto cells relative to atmospheric moisture. Enchanted by this phenomenon, a quest into the redefinition of actuation has become the ambition of the bioLogic team.