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Cloud of Cards (ABCD), a home cloud kit


Research and Art direction by Patrick Keller and Nicolas Nova.


Cloud of Cards, a home cloud kit to reappropriate your dataself, is the principal outcome of the joint design and ethnographic research Inhabiting and Interfacing the Cloud(s), accompanied by two books in print-on-demand that document it.

The main results of the project are four artifacts [ A) - B) - C) - D) ], both digital and physical that constitute a set of modular tools (“cards”) that are delivered in the form of an open-source diy kit, freely accessible on www.cloudofcards.org as well as on Github. The purpose of these tools is to give everyone, the community of designers and makers in particular, the possibility to set up their own small size data-center and cloud, manage their data in a decentralized way or develop their own alternative projects upon this personal small scale infrastructure.


 
 

A) 19″ Living Rack


Project developed by Léa Pereyre


19” Living Rack is an open source variation around the standardized 19” computer server rack (or cabinet). Dedicated to be distributed in domestic environments for personal or for small size community uses, the modular base of the standard rack is getting combined with additional functions, to address this renewed small office/home office context.

In making clear reference to the famous Ch. Eames toy, the modular House of Cards project, the 19” Living Rack comes in one technical “Base” that can then be combined and customized into three different types: “Office”, “Home”, and “Garden”, to set up personal and somehow undersized data centers.

For each configuration, air flows have been taken into consideration and act as design and functional factors: the air in the front part of the rack remains temperate before entering the rack and cooling the servers, while the back and top air flows are getting warmed up and dried due to the computers heating process. “Office” functions comes therefore mainly in the front part of the rack, “Home” on the back where elements can be tempered or dried, while “Garden” comes on the top, equipped with moistened plants to clean, re-humidify, perfume and cool down the air.

B) Cloud of Cards Processing Library

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Project developed by Christian Babski (fabric | ch)


Cloud of Cards Processing Library consists in the unification of three different API dedicated to online files and folders manipulation and the development of an additional fourth one specific to the needs of the Cloud of Cards kit and the Inhabiting and Interfacing the Cloud(s) research project. The overall final package has been adapted to the Processing development language and linked to the open-source cloud software ownCloud.

Additional behaviors are included that can also be used in relation to ownCloud (or Nextcloud), for both its server and clients. These additional functions are the implemented results of the design research process, linked to an ethnographic study about the cloud user experience.

Through the use of this new library written in Processing and linked to other open-source tools, it is now easier for a wider public to experiment, sketch and develop alternative interfaces, visual or physical applications for the cloud. In particular, the communities of designers and makers that are used to the Processing language.

C) 5 Folders Cloud

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Project developed by Christian Babski (fabric | ch)


5 Folders Cloud is a software implementation (among many possible) of the Cloud of Cards Processing Library and exemplifies its use, server and software side. It is a version of ownCloud with automated behaviors and cascades of events, in particular when linked to the 5 Connected Objects. As a matter of fact, this variation on the cloud combines a client-server architecture with a distributed, almost horizontal peer-to-peer approach.

Linked to the results of the research project’s ethnographic research on the uses of the cloud, 5 Folders Cloud translates in the form of five verbs of action the various identified motivations that seem to push users to drop files and data into this technological setup. These verbs in turn become the main functions and names of five synchronized cloud folders that serve the various files interactions. Each of these folders automates digital procedures linked to these motivations.

C) 5 Folders Cloud, cookbook only: recipes and other elements

Please find below the necessary recipes, blueprints and information for the 5 Folders Cloud project.


Install ownCloud client.

Look for, Subscribe and syndicate to one or many 5 Folders Cloud (recipes, how-to & instructions included).


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