Software apps and online services
La Machine a lire Roussel was a mechanical device designed in 1954 to read a book named New Impressions of Africa by Raymond Roussel
Raymond Roussel was a French writer who exerted a profound influence in Surrealists and Oulipo and New Impressions of Africa was a strange 1, 274-line poem with parenthetical asides that run up to five levels deep.
I think any programmer or mathematics enthusiast could relate to this structure.
Following a tradition – compulsion? – of colliding literature and technology (see also Rayuelomatic, Klausner Machine, Nyctograph Machine, etc) I’ve decided to make a New Roussel Reading machine but using a previous book named… Impressions of Africa (“a carnivalesque travelogue that features the passengers of the Lynceus, a vessel shipwrecked by a hurricane in the fictional land of Ponukele on a journey from Marseilles to Buenos Aires”)
I’ve also decided to replace old machine’s mechanical crank by a continuous servo motor driven by Arduino and fired up by a push button connected to a delay routine using intervals related to Raymond Roussel biography.
For example: Roussel died in 1933, so 1933 is used as one of the delays while passing the cards.
- An old Rolodex – not so easy to find a Rolodex in Argentina, BTW
- Arduino Nano
- Push Button
- DC female connector
- 3 Amp Power Supply
- 2 x 3d printed side supports
- In Design Template to create fragment cards
Cards layout was designed using Adobe In Design
Why making anything no one asked, required or paid? How is it better or at least different to read Impressions of Africa by Raymond Roussel using this machine? Is it an excuse? a tribute? an amusement?
For sure it is different as it is different to read on a screen than reading on paper. In this case there is also a random factor, an arbitrary fragmentation, sounds and kinetics involved.
SecondRaymond Roussel Reading Machine