Wifi Dowsing Rod

Van Mensvoort
September 11th 2009

Today's technology advances so rapidly that people are often unable to update their media schemas in time and as a result are left cluelessly in awe of it all. Mike Thompson's Wifi dowsing rod aims to work against this: By basing the design for a wireless internet detector on ancient technology, the user should immediately feel at home with the device.

Although perhaps impractical and anecdotal, the Wifi dowsing rod is an intriguing attempt of using 'magic' as a construct to cope with the technological complexity accumulating around us. A great gift for your grand-grand-parents.

Related: Magical interaction, Your grand-grand-grand-parents new media, Dandella shows you the way, Voodoo communication device.

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Posted 28/07/2011 – 16:39

The wifi rod makes a reappearance as a museum object at the Museum of Modern Art's Talk to Me exhibition (http://www.wired.com/underwire/2011/07/talk-to-me/?pid=4018). Now, if we consider Coomaraswamy's observation that "we are proud of our museums where we display a way of living that we have made impossible", what did happen to make the wifi rod obsolete before it even did find real use? Since the aether has been flooded by wifi waves, I suppose what is needed now for our grand-parents is a magic lock pick set for cracking wifi key locks.

Posted 28/07/2011 – 11:01


Should men be able to give birth to children?

Koert van Mensvoort: Is the artificial womb frankenstein-like symbol of (male) engineers trying to steal the magical womb from women? Or… is it a feminist project and needed to reach through equality between the sexes? I personally lean towards the latter. To me it feels like progress if a girl can tell a guy to carry the womb for a change.

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