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The art of Wi-Fi signals (photos)

Oslo designers visualize their city's invisible Wi-Fi signal patterns with stunning paintings made of light.

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Christopher MacManus
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Wi-Fi signals at night

Timo Arnall, Jorn Knutsen, and Einar Sneve Martinussen, Ph.D. candidates from the Oslo School of Architecture and Design, have found a unique way to visualize invisible Wi-Fi signals in their Norwegian city by light painting signal strength in long-exposure photographs.
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Wall of light

To create the mesmerizing visuals, the artists placed a camera nearby as they took a Wi-Fi-equipped rod with 80 LEDs to various locations at nighttime in the Oslo borough of Grunerlokka. The lights illuminate at varying levels depending on signal reach.
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AHO network

A dense network in the forecourt of the Oslo School of Architecture and Design.
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Floating fence

This light painting almost looks like a transparent floating electric fence around the brick building.
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Hidden topography

This shot, a combination of five separate photos, reveals the hidden topography of wireless networks in Oslo.

"The strength, consistency, and reach of the network says something about the built environment where it is set up, as well as reflecting the size and status of the host," according to Martinussen.

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Bus stop

An Oslo bus stop within a Wi-Fi network.
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RN-131C WiFly module

The central component of the Wi-Fi light- painting project is Roving Network's RN-131G WiFly module, designed as an Arduino shield by Sparkfun.

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