Tuesday & Thursday
9:00 PM–11:50 PM

Professor: (office hours: Wednesday 12:00-2:00)
TA: (office hours: TBD)

Working with electronics opens new ways to connect the virtual and physical—from ephemeral representations on screens and networks to bodies in space and time. Through workshops, readings, lectures, critiques, and discussions, we will reevaluate the role desktop computers (and their mice, trackpads, keyboards, screens, and gamepads) play in forming our understanding of what is technically possible, sensible, logical, foolish, magical, and intuitive.

In this course, each participant will build an understanding of electricity, circuit design, mechanisms, sensors, actuators, micro-controller programming, custom interface design, and integrating electronics with software. For the first half of the quarter, we will focus on building our familiarity with these new tools through a series of short weekly and in-class assignments and workshops. The second half of the term will require developing, presenting, designing, and executing a large individual (or small-group) project.

All assignments need to be documented and archived. Students must keep prints and objects from the assignments to demonstrate progress. Class time is used to learn skills, fabricate objects, and discuss student work.


30% – Projects
30% – Final Project
20% – Engagement throughout the course (active participation and substantive contribution to the weekly critiques and discussions)
20% – Process and project documentation

Participation & Attendance

Punctuality, focus, articulation of concepts, and contribution to class discussions are all part of class participation.

Classes start at 9:00 AM. If you are 15 minutes late, you will receive a tardy. 3 tardies will turn into 1 absence. Every unexcused (before the class time) absence equals 1 full grade down (A to B), 3 unexcused absences result in a failing grade.

If there is an emergency and you will be late or absent from the class, please email me.

Required Materials

Count Name Cost
1 Arduino Leonardo 24.95
1 Full-Sized Breadboard 5.00
1 Wall Adapter Power Supply (9 VDC 650mA) 5.95
1 Solid State Relay - 40A 9.95
1 LED - Assorted (20 pack) 2.95
1 Momentary Pushbutton Switch - 12mm Square 0.50
1 Jumper Wires 4.95
1 Actuator (Motor, servo, stepper, solenoid, etc) of your choice. (Actuators at Sparkfun) -
1 Sensor of your choice. (Sensors at Sparkfun) -

† Opther options include the Arduino Pro Micro, Arduino Uno, or SparkFun RedBoard. If you go with one of these please talk to me first! The Leonardo is also in stock at Jameco and Pololu.
‡ Half-sized is ok too, might want to get a couple so you don't have to pull everything apart to make a new project.

Optional Materials

Count Name Cost
1 LED - RGB Diffused Common Cathode 1.95
1 USB Micro-B Cable - 6 Foot 3.95
1 SoftPot Membrane Potentiometer
1 Wire Strippers 9.95
1 Parts Box (You can also find nice cheap boxes at Home Depot) 5.95

Commitment to Diversity and Plurality

We understand the classroom as a space for practicing freedom; where one may challenge psychic, social, and cultural borders and create meaningful artistic expressions. To do so we must acknowledge and embrace the different identities and backgrounds we inhabit. This means that we will use preferred pronouns, respect self-identifications, and be mindful of special needs. Disagreement is encouraged and supported, however our differences affect our conceptualization and experience of reality, and it is extremely important to remember that certain gender, race, sex, and class identities are more privileged while others are undermined and marginalized. Consequently, this makes some people feel more protected or vulnerable during debates and discussions. A collaborative effort between the students, TA, and instructor is needed to create a supportive learning environment. While everyone should feel free to experiment creatively and conceptually, if a class member points out that something you have said or shared with the group is offensive, avoid being defensive; instead approach the discussion as a valuable opportunity for us to grow and learn from one another. Alternatively if you feel that something said in discussion or included in a piece of work is harmful, you are encouraged to speak with the instructor or TA.