#01 assignment: low tech communication

01.1 introduction

For the first assignment we should develop a communication technology capable of flexible sending of messages at a distance of 600 yards and beyond. Most importantly the system should not rely on any electronic components. Each team could decide if they will develop an l. alphabetic system (sending words made up of letters) or a 2. non-letter based system that sends other kinds of units (you will have to determine what kinds of messages might be important).

Lowtech Photo 1

photo 01: Low Tech

01.2 idea & concept

The system we came up with to communicate the messages consisted of a combination of numbers and colors. We choose 5 different colors which are easy to distinguish from each other. A group of 6 different messages was connected to each color, each message represented by a number. Combining a color with a number made it possible to communicate any of the overall 30 messages, despite the distance between sender and receiver.

Lowtech Photo 2

photo 02: Low Tech

01.3 résumé

The system worked well and quick. However, it was limited to only 30 messages which had to be set up before. You can say that this system is not very flexible, e.g. you cannot spontanously send a message that comes to your mind etc. Another downside to the system was the fact, that a channel for feedback was missing. A syntax for sigaling that the receiver has or has not got the message correctly would have been helpful.


01.4 messages


  1. Let's get a beer
  2. What's going on this weekend?
  3. Where is the party at?
  4. Let's kick it!
  5. Let's go to the pub!
  6. Let's go to the bar!


  1. Let's cut class
  2. Steve Wilson is the coolest
  3. Let's hang out after class
  4. This class kicks ass
  5. We deserve at least an A
  6. I wonder what grade we gonna get


  1. Let's get a burrito
  2. Let's get a slice
  3. You owe me 3.00 for materials
  4. Do you work today?
  5. If so you should call in sick
  6. Let's go to the beach


  1. Let's go and see a movie
  2. Want to go downtown?
  3. I hate Bart
  4. I hate Muni
  5. The food on campus is horrible
  6. Let's take a break after this