Zine Machine is a paper-based math tinkering kit that uses two-dimensional mechanical movements to enable physical sense-making about mathematical functions. Zines are made by folding paper into the form of a pocket-sized story-telling magazine. Zine Machine presents automata, moving mechanical devices, in the format of a zine that sets a narrative between math and motion. With Zine Machine, learners can represent the mathematical concepts of functions, inputs, and outputs embodied in mechanical movements. The goal is to tinker with arrangements of the static and dynamic pieces in the zine to drive one or more outputs using a fixed input. The zine provides instruction as a folded booklet and opens up to a flat sheet to serve as the maker canvas. Zine Machine facilitates new thinking around math and making, offering an accessible and creative tangible medium of interaction.
Note: This is an initial version of an on-going long-term project. The next steps in the works are addition of paper circuits with the goal of generating sounds based on the output movements created by the user; provisioning an additional, playful sensory experience. Later steps will involve the coupling of paper circuits with the maker canvas on the Zine Machine using conductive ink-made paths, a piezo disc, a coin cell and an oscillator circuit IC.