“Rocking” the perfect camouflage location for exhibit microphones

Mark Farley, Rebecca Harver and I made a trip to the “Aquarium Village” in Newport (and the Visitor Center’s storage unit) in the hopes of finding anything remotely inspiring in our task of camouflaging the microphones in installation at the touch tanks. We thought maybe driftwood or something like that would be easy enough to drill into and still fit within the naturalistic design of the tanks. Upon opening the door and stumbling upon dusty unidentifiable objects, our hope was not so high but soon enough I discovered what seemed to be the best solution for our dilemma.

Rock boring clams made perfect holes for our microphones.
Rock boring clams made perfect holes for our microphones.
Rock boring clams made the perfect holes for our microphones.
Rock boring clams made the perfect holes for our microphones.

Thank you rock boring clams for providing us the perfect “habitat” for our microphones to live! Your capability of penetrating wood, coral and rocks leaving behind these perfectly sized holes just made our life much easier and those interesting rocks a great addition to our exhibit. We did have to do a little rasping but all in all our microphones fit perfectly. Below are some photos illustrating this interesting merge between nature and technology to facilitate our video data collection and analysis.

Then we were off to drill holes at the touch tank for placement of the microphone ensemble, connecting wires and power sources. Jenny East was very proud of her newly acquired skills. We will collect some data with a couple of these installed microphones now and make sure all is functioning well before we continue the set up. I am super excited to start my data collection through this high quality video and audio system, as well as happy to see the vision long developed for the system to actually materialize. I am sure we will test around bouncing and interfering sounds since the touch tanks are so dynamic, but hey we are getting there. Stay tuned for more updates on Cyberlab’s interesting adaptations.

Susan O’Brien setting up wires.
Susan O’Brien setting up wires.
Jenny East setting up wires.
Wire madness.
Jenny East setting up wires.
Jenny East setting up wires.