Conference Badges with a Virus

When asked to create a set of conference badges, the makerspace Workshop 88 designed a viral experience.

Commissioned badges are no new thing, with conferences like Defcon and even us here at Hackaday developing our own. Along those same lines, the Big Data Everywhere conference asked the folks at Workshop 88 to design and develop a set of badges for that communicated with each other using RF.

With the goal of showcasing the applications of big data and wearable technology, the group set out to develop a set of badges initially prototyped in Arduino GitHub project page here that collected and created large amounts of information by communicating with each other.

To do this, they seeded a “Patient Zero” badge with an infection, which soon spread a disease to other badges and spread throughout the conference. The badges then sent their data to a kiosk powered by Raspberry Pi that compiled everything into a flat file and used D3 for visualization. Conference-goers were then able to use the kiosk to check their infection status as well as the progression of the virus through the event.

No real people were harmed in the making of this project.

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