Artist Niklas Roy taught a one week workshop at the HfG Offenbach, where he asked the design students in the electronic media class how computers work on their fundamental levels and whether communication networks can be built from scratch with limited materials. They aimed to answer these questions using cardboard, welding wire, glue, rope, rulers, and cutting knives.
The students had to rethink how digital devices work in order to build the cardboard versions, and designed a series of creations including a masterclock, speedway racing game, punch card reader, cloud player, and NAND gate.
Roy created a plotter using durable Finnish cardboard, with axles and slide rails made out of welding rod, and everything connected with super glue, adhesive tape and tie wraps. He built two rotary dials and a switch for the interface.
One of the dials moved the pen in y-position, while the other moved the table under the pen in x-position, and the switch lifted the pen or placed it on the paper. Click through to see images from the cardboard computer workshop: