octagonal Ash wood frame with view inside and beautiful wood markings on panels

Making the Machine

The wonderful team that built http://www.thepredictionmachine.orghave come back together to make the Future Machine. I am collaborating again with Ian Jones (Sherwood Wood) on the structure of the machine, using an Ash tree from a local wood (to Nottingham) felled and planked by Ian’s friend (see image below).

The machine is octagonal (Wallace has named it the Octagonal Centre of the Universe). Like honeycombs, the centre of the dome in the Duomo in Florence and the infinite set of octagonal prisms found in nature. It is influenced by the Jaggannath in India (the Lord of the Universe), that is celebrated at the Ratha Yatra festival in June and July. It is where the English word Jaggernaut comes from. Jagganath is placed in a chariot and pulled to the temple. Children make small versions to pull around their home to make it sacred. It is also inspired by the Monolith in the film 2001 Space Odessey, the ancient greek Oracle at Delphi and the Norse myth of Yggdrasil a mystical Ash Tree at the centre of the Universe. It is also meant to be reminiscent of the old hurdy gurdys and barrel organs that were pushed around cities (and in many places still are), playing popular music, sometimes telling fortunes.

The Future Machine will be pushed around England, around Finsbury Park in London, Christ Church Gardens in Nottingham, up to Tilberthwaite Quarry in Cumbria and around King Wood Common in Oxfordshire. Later, hopefully, it will also travel to other corners of England…

The insides are being made with Matt Little (building the sustainable power), Robin Shackford (building the brain), Dominic Price (web, data and dials) and Matthew Gates (arduino, weather station and dials).