Hacking Arts

Saturday Sept 28, Astrodime introduced new products at a conference on art and entrepreneurship held at the MIT media lab and hosted by the Sloan School.

We collected new Apps and accessories for the iCAN, demoed our products, and stepped up our marketing with the Astrodime Electronic and Tin Can Marching band.





MIT7 iCAN user survey: Question 1

Based on a user survey on the iCAN, here are the preliminary results. This survey was conducted at the MIT7 conference on Saturday May 14, 2011. This is Question 1.

QUESTION 1: If you had an iCAN (TM), how often would you use it and what would you use it for?

Only as often as necessary

I’d use it to sing to myself and test my own reaction to my lectures. I’d use it several times a day. (5 to 10 times)

At least once a day for meditating on difficult problems.

Secret meetings with myself.

During lent for confession.

I do wish I had a pipe-based trans-home communication system.
Control of personal soundscape

Often, for whispering sweet nothings at my neighbors who shout back and forth at each other across the street. (Quiet by example)

I don’t think I would use it.

Once in a while, not very often.

Looks like it has multiple uses -a quick plumbing solution -2nd communications, after all has a lot in common with plumbing.

Very frequently

Frequently unknown confidential conversation.

Testing quality, timbre or my own voice.

I mean, I can’t imagine a time during the day when I wouldn’t be using the

I’ll use it always as a necklace, and would be able to communicate all the time.

Once a week at parties.

All the time for everything.

MIT7 iCAN user survey: Question 2

Based on a user survey on the iCAN, here are the preliminary results. This survey was conducted at the MIT7 conference on Saturday May 14, 2011. This is Question 2.

QUESTION 2: What would be your preferred network for use of the iCAN (TM)?
I could build my own network.

Network for anything.

At lunch time when I could also use as A can.

My voice 4g.

Would mostly use it myself.

The network of one. (I love the battery life.)

Listening to my own voice. Museums.


Not AT&T, calls would be dropped. True story. AT&T told me my Internet was out because birds and squirrels chew wires for the electrical shocks to stay warm.

The social.

The Nashville network.

Spy network.


Around campus to have students record their feelings in real time about what they do and see around campus.


MIT7 iCAN user survey: Question 3

Based on a user survey on the iCAN, here are the preliminary results. This survey was conducted at the MIT7 conference on Saturday May 14, 2011. This is Question 3.

QUESTION 3: What accessories do you suggest would be useful for the iCAN (TM)?. What are your favorite colors?

Little boxes. Rose, blue, violet.

Blue accessories. Blue

I like black and blue colors. A recording device to record talks and thoughts for later replay.

The Ican open source CanOpener. Software hacking package.

Purple. It could have a pinhole camera.

A lanyard hook for mobile accessories. My favorite color is blue (tooth)

Metallic. More iPhone like.

A larger can or (can shaped bucket) to carry it in. a can cozy (quilted rooster shaped) A perpetual motion machine. A mobile made out of other cans that a group of people could stand under and talk into.


Blue. Clock timer.

Definitely white. (Smudges might also be a nice touch.)

Belt clip.

I would like to have some amplification capabilities. Any fashion enhancement would be good. Bright colors.

Green maybe the color of preference nowadays.

Soft grip-pod lining around the PVC piping.

Favorite color: red. But why not a device that change the color according to your humor?

Neon green. Ican covers in all colors.

Transparent and yellow.

MIT7 iCAN user survey: Question 4

Based on a user survey on the iCAN, here are the preliminary results. This survey was conducted at the MIT7 conference on Saturday May 14, 2011. This is Question 4.

QUESTION 4: Can you suggest any apps you would like to see developed for the iCAN (TM)?


Fax. Wouldn’t it be so cool to be able to sands print transmission through our phone lines.

I think I already answered.

Can I? I can! Neoprene sleeves please.

IPhone holder.

Not really. I think you tapped the main possibilities.

/recording device.


Rustproofing app. Re-canning app for packaging and transmitting preserves.

No apps! Resist application. Or apps that track my period menstrual cycle.

Net hack.

Angry birds.


An amplifier to make the sounds louder and a stress meter to measure the stress in the voice of the speaker.

AstroDime at MIT7

AstroDime Transit Authority will be taking part in MIT7: Unstable Platforms: the Promise and Peril of Transition. This is taking place May 13-15, 2011.

here’s the agenda for the Media in Transition conference:


AstroDIme will be doing some interventions and a presentation. Based on the data we have collected this spring for our iCAN, suggestions for apps and updates, we will present our data and our next prototype for the iCAN

We will be collecting more data at the Saturday reception in the TING foyer at MIT
from 7-9pm. There, we will circulate with iCANs and tin can phones and take surveys on the future of the iCAN.


Our presentation of data will be on 10:45AM sunday. in room E51-335.
Here’s the full session:

Music of the Spheres
Ananya Ghoshal, Cybernetics, the Music of John Cage and New Media
Boris Goesl, Modern Projection Planetariums as Media of Iterative Reinvention
sam smiley, The Future is Now: smartCANS in the 21st Century

moderator: Paul van den Hoven

Hope to see you there!

The Future is Now: smartCANS in the 21st Century

The Future is NOW!

smartCANS in the 21st century.
TRADE SHOW and Conference

Bannister Gallery
Rhode Island College
Providence Rhode Island

Keynote Speech by Mitchell K. Ahern,
Chairman of the International iCAN Developer’s Association

His speech will take place via SKYPE at 6PM EST

AstroDime Telecommunications Company is sponsoring a TRADE SHOW and demonstration of cutting edge TIN CAN technology.
Based on consumer response, we will premiere our iCAN version, with new improved performance and optional interactivity. In addition, using only the most intelligent of our smartCANS and the faster than sound speed of our 2G network, consumers will be able to beta test ENHANCED ™ tin can phone calls via our Party Line, for the latest in social networking.

We are honored to have Mitchel K. Ahern
Chairman of the International iCAN Developer’s Association
as our Keynote speaker.
his Keynote Speech:  “iCAN is the Platform on Which We Will Build the Future”

Mitchel K Ahern, Chairman of the International iCAN Developers Association

Mitchel has been in digital marketing and communications for a very long time with titles like SYSOP, Webmaster, Digital Media Producer, Product Manager and Director of Communications for companies such as One to One Interactive, Eastern Acoustic Works, and currently Cantina. He’s worked with clients such as Aegon, Royal Caribbean and UPS to develop apps for both consumers and in the B2B space. He writes for industry publications such as iMedia Connection and speaks at various industry events, most recently leading a panel at the Direct Marketing Associations DMA2010. Mitchel also has extensive experience with non-profit trade organizations as Vice President of the Webmasters Guild and chairman of the Association of Internet Professionals with over 33 international chapters. In his current role as Chairman of the International iCAN App Developers Association Mitchel is responsible for coordinating the efforts towards establishing a coherent and consistent iCAN user experience, promoting accessibility, and establishing professional development opportunities for the larger iCAN technical community.

Survey Results for iCAN apps!

Focus Group Survey Results

On Friday, February 25, astrodimer sam smiley gave a presentation on the iCAN (TM) and also handed out surveys. The panel/presentation was called “An Afternoon of Dialogue, Debate, and Discourse” and included art historian Cher Knight and AIB faculty member and artist Nathan Felde. Stuart Steck was the organizer and moderator of this panel.

On behalf of Astrodime, sam sam smiley created a survey, which would help AstroDime in the creation of “apps” for the iCAN (TM). Here are the results of the survey.

1. If you had an iCAN, how often would you use it and what would you use it for?

Meetings, talking to myself in public
I would keep one half and give the other to a friend.
To recycle my thoughts, to prevent my thoughts from escaping to others, to prevent word pollution, to communicate with my head.
Every thought I had that I wanted to transmit to myself
Holding Soup, Talk Soup
Once a month
I’d use it for silly fun
I would poke, various noises, ring tones
I would pretend I was talking to my therapist
I’d use this every day in class. I think this would be a pretty amazing way to conduct crits.
The first thing I would do would be hack it.
Then I’d post my hack on the instructables under my hacker alias.

2. What would be your preferred network?

T riders
deep, dark secrets
Party Line
Just my close hacker community friends

3. What accessories do you suggest would be useful for the iCAN? What are your favorite colors?

Naples Yellow
“Phone covers”, bedazzled iCANs! Personalize your own!
An iCAN “sock” for a) modesty, b) cold weather use
Economy-can sized unit for family chat
Stylish label-cases: chunky and Campbell’s preferred
Jolly green giant, Cotton candy blue, Warhol soup can red
I love the blue
Funnel attachment
Those little cell phone charms. That would be way cute, like Hello Kitty or something.
A hands free head/neck holder brace thing so you can text at the same time (multitasking)
I like the natural colors of the materials
A hands free version would be nice

4. Can you suggest any apps you would like to see developed for the iCAN?

Music, Political rants
Thought whirling, circular thinking (like circular breathing), If you get thoughts whirling fast enough, they may puff up like beaten egg whites. Think what we might discern!?!
The eye-can camera phone
Recycling-yard filler
CAMP Bells- bang cans together to ward off bears
CANdid camera- easily changed into a pinhole camera
Puddle jumpers or step-ups to see over crowds
Poetry app
Inside joke app
Peaceful protesting “megaphone” app
Voice modifier
Some app that tracked my metrics and posted my usage data to twitter

iCAN call for APPS!

Looking for APP or APP proposals for our bleeding-edge technology, the iCAN!

Astrodime at Maker Faire Rhode Island

Astrodime at Maker Faire Rhode Island

Sept 30 2009 by Amanda

This is a recap of Astrodime’s experience at the Maker Faire festival in Providence, RI. The website for the festival is at http://makerfaireri.com/.

On Saturday, September 19 the Astrodime Transit Authority demonstrated our tin can telecommunications system at the Maker Faire Rhode Island festival. The technicians of Astrodime, including sam, Julia, Lisa, and Amanda worked directly with adults and young children in using the AstroCan communications systems. Many adults were eager to prove to their children that the tin can system worked just as well as their iPHONES.

Set in the heart of the Financial District in Providence, Astrodime’s exhibition consisted of 2 videos displaying the most current INtransit journal “Can You Hear Me Now?” and “Secret Decoder”. Also on display were the hand-crafted iCANs, tin can phones, and wire tapping devices. Between 2pm and 10pm locals and out of towners experimented with our iCAN, tin can party line, and tin can phone wiretapping. Throughout the day, over 200 people tested the tin can communication device, and sam experimented with our wiretapping capabilities.

Maker Faire is the foremost event for grassroots American innovation. Being the first Maker Faire festival in Providence, this event attracted over 50 makers, inventors, and artists to showcase their most recent inventions. One of the highlights of the day was the disco bicycle party, designed by the custom frame bike-makers Circle A Cycles; another rare gadgeteer was Tellart, and they installed an interactive mixed reality pong game that people could play by wearing helmuts with IR LED’s attached. As Maker Faire continued into the late evening, the Providence River was set on fire as the themed “Celebration of Life” Waterfire festival took place!