Initial Brainstorming

Final Major Project / 06

July 30, 2021

Luchen Peng, Tiana Robison, Jinsong (Sylvester) Liu

We showed our process to the class. Although John & Al give very positive notes to the presentation and topic potentiality, they remind us to stay a critical view of the methodology. To the rest, I don’t think we explain well enough about data bias and critical design (partly because of the limited presenting time). More importantly, the missing context and target audience make the idea even more abstract.

To continue our work, we decided to generate some ideas ourselves. All group members would try to develop ideas in each of the three sectors: health, finance and workplace.

Below are detailed descriptions of my design and a general view of those from Luchen and Tiana.

A Hiring Machine

This installation simulates an imaginative process of AI interview. By reading a guide booklet, the human applicants need to create a CV receipt that only a machine can read. Then they will have to pass a human/robot identifier, chat with the algorithm via a screen, and finally meet the human interviewer.

I got the inspiration from the zombie apocalypse in popular culture, which originated from Haitian culture. It struck the western world when the French brought West African slaves to Europe in the 17th century. Appropriating the theme of fear, I imagined an experience that people fear AI and need to survive with manual, disguise and behaviour change.

Hiring machines. ©silvesterlau

Transplant Organ

This exhibition shows treasure organs with rare biometric data. To prevent data bias in medical science, doctors need to collect data from marginalised rare organs. These containers preserve organs well and display their speciality, meanwhile shows the conflict between privacy and data collecting.
I’m inspired by Candice Lin’s work, Pig and Poison, combining colonialism and body art. The health sector seems closer to us now in the COVID-19 pandemic, and the “Chinese flu” is part of the long racialising disease history.

Ankle Monitor

This device is for people in the credit crisis. Growing evidence shows that personal data contribute a huge role in financial evaluation. While one’s credit score remains mysterious, the joining of algorithms emphasises the characters of a “black box”. Would people want a product to constrain them (somehow like a prisoner) and probably get a higher mortgage? How would we live differently?

Ideas from Luchen & Tiana

Tiana had a similar idea of an interviewing installation: a two-side room that shows both the suspicious AI and the visualised algorithm. Her other concept is a healing pod to indicate injury to a human body.

Luchen provided a design of a facial expression training device, helping people to smile and talk like a successful businessmen. She also suggested religion and a black market as a context for the near future.

Who, what, where, how. Image by group.
Who, what, where, how. Image by group.

We noticed that all the designs are entirely random and intricate. Some work as an individual device, while others serve as a context. I’m fascinated with the notion of punishment, that humans must unwillingly do ridiculous things to adapt to the biased AI. Next step, we are curious about what others might come up with in the workshops.


  • Crockett, Z. and Zarracina, J. (2016). How the Zombie Represents America’s Deepest Fears. [online] Vox. Available at:
  • Weiss, J. (2021). Resident Alien’s Illustrated Intros Are IKEA Instruction Manuals for extra-terrestrials. [online] SYFY WIRE. Available at: [Accessed 29 July. 2021].
  • Guangdong Times Museum (2021). Candice Lin: Pigs and Poison - Announcements - e-flux. [online] Available at: [Accessed 29 July. 2021].