How About Talking to Neighbors is an on-going research and design project in search of surveillance protection by using small technologies within small networks. As our digital spaces become highly centralized and surveilled, this project thinks back on physical proximity (“neighborhood”) as a digital communication framework, creating with small-scale wireless protocols that are independent to large infrastructures as a form of radical resistance.
An artifact from this research is Whisper Phone, an open-source, battery-operated DIY device I designed and assembled, using LoRa, a low power, long-range radio network. This protocol connects two or more devices wirelessly in a small group over a free radio frequency, and allows them to communicate without relying on cellular or internet services, completely away from mass surveillance infrastructures. Accompanying the device, I'm organizing a series of curated research and writings on alternative communication protocols, community organization, decentralization, and more.
More information coming soon here
Viola He is a Shanghai-born, Brooklyn-based design technologist, programmer, and interdisciplinary artist. Inspired and grounded by histories of subcultures and resistance movements, their creative practices engage with hardware, computing, movements and various time-based media, as pathways to explore alternative structures for humans and machines in a time or crisis.