How do you feel about finals? Anx­ious? Exhausted? Relieved?

Share your feel­ings with the North­eastern com­mu­nity by voting online or by pressing one of the color-​​coded but­tons out­side of Ryder Hall. Select red for anx­ious, purple for exhausted, or blue for relieved.

The results will be dis­played each night after sunset in a three-​​dimensional LED matrix, which is mounted on the building’s façade and com­prises 900 lights.

Dubbed “.vote,” the dis­play is the result of a col­lab­o­ra­tion between Philips Color Kinetics and Northeastern’s Master of Fine Arts in Infor­ma­tion Design and Visu­al­iza­tion, a new two-​​​​year inter­dis­ci­pli­nary pro­gram in the Col­lege of Arts, Media, and Design in which stu­dents learn to trans­late and com­mu­ni­cate infor­ma­tion into visual, phys­ical, and vir­tual forms.

On Thursday evening, a score of stu­dents, fac­ulty, and staff gath­ered at Cen­ten­nial Common for the offi­cial opening of the inter­ac­tive instal­la­tion, which will remain on dis­play until the fall. After finals, a new ques­tion will be posed to the North­eastern community.

.vote was cre­ated by six grad­uate stu­dents in the MFA pro­gram for a course titled “Infor­ma­tion design for dynamic media and light.” Dietmar Offen­huber, an assis­tant pro­fessor of infor­ma­tion visu­al­iza­tion, and Susanne Seitinger, the city inno­va­tions man­ager for Philips Color Kinetics, co-​​taught the course, which aimed to demon­strate the power of out­door lighting sys­tems in urban settings.

The .vote project is a new installation in Ryder Hall, done by the Northeastern Information Design and Visualization MFA program in collaboration with Philips Color Kinetics. Photo by Maria Amasanti.

The .vote project is a new instal­la­tion in Ryder Hall, com­pleted by stu­dents in Northeastern’s Infor­ma­tion Design and Visu­al­iza­tion MFA pro­gram in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Philips Color Kinetics. Photo by Maria Amasanti.

You can let the group know what you think of the instal­la­tion and share ideas for future polls by emailing your sug­ges­tions to idv-​students@​neu.​edu. Don’t be afraid to get cre­ative. “We want to use this tech­nology to develop infra­struc­ture that can be used by stu­dents of any dis­ci­pline,” said Offen­huber, who holds joint appoint­ments in CAMD and the Col­lege of Social Sci­ences and Human­i­ties. “There is already a lot of interest from other depart­ments throughout the uni­ver­sity to develop exper­i­ments that can be run on the façade.”

.votes diverse array of poten­tial appli­ca­tions aligns with the aca­d­emic makeup of the first cohort of stu­dents in the infor­ma­tion design and visu­al­iza­tion pro­gram: Their under­grad­uate back­grounds range from biology and phi­los­ophy to eco­nomics and motion design.

Ashley Treni, MA’15, studied graphic design and was intro­duced to the master’s pro­gram by Nathan Felde, the chair of the Depart­ment of Art + Design. “I’ve always been inter­ested in visu­al­izing sys­tems and inter­ac­tion design,” Treni said. “The exciting thing about this pro­gram is that we’re able to explore all of these emerging fields, including data mining, infor­ma­tion design, expe­ri­ence design, and sys­tems design.”

Her con­tri­bu­tion to the inter­ac­tive instal­la­tion included designing text for the LED matrix. But col­lab­o­ra­tion was key, she said, espe­cially when pro­gram­ming was involved.

We all worked together and gave each other feed­back,” Treni explained. “Our goal was to create a space for stu­dents, fac­ulty, and staff to interact with some­thing and then be able to see the col­lec­tive sen­ti­ment of the North­eastern community.”