The Singing Park Benches

Posted on June 12, 2005

A new art project in England is placing seemingly intelligent bins and benches in a public area in The Junction at Cambridge University. The benches and trash bins, which are solar-powered, appear to move around, sing, avoid bad weather and head for the shade if they get too hot.
Bins and benches will be free to roam independently within the piazza. The Bins and benches are solar powered but, to passers-by, they will look like ordinary metal bins and standard wooden park benches. Each bench will drift slowly around the square and all bins and benches are equipped with sensors to detect the presence of objects in their immediate vicinity, coming to a complete halt when any object is closer than two meters. To guard against loss by theft, Bins and Benches have tilt alarms fitted and global positioning technology inside. Occasionally, when the weather is good, small clusters will gather and sing a harmony with the bins joining in with their sweet soprano voices.
The creators of the exhibit claim to have created the singing and dancing benches to give people some entertainment during the day. One might ask: who really wants to chase after a park bench?

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