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Brief Published: 12 Apr 2018

Writing Robot Transforms Any Wall into Digital Screen


Italian design studio Carlo Ratti Associati (CRA) has unveiled Scribit, a writing robot that can draw and erase digital content on physical surfaces, enabling a wall to act as a screen.

The circular drawing device is suspended on cables, allowing it to accurately move up and down, and left and right. The robot interprets imagery as points along a vertical and horizontal axis and uses this information to plot down four coloured erasable markers held within the device.

Users can upload digital files and send these to a mobile app to be recreated as illustrations. Scribit uses the same precision technology to remove markings with an internal eraser, making it possible to respond to information in real time and display updating news feeds on any vertical surface, from whiteboards to glass or plaster. 

Scribit reacts to growing concerns about screen dependency. By translating the accuracy and fast-paced flexibility of digital technology to a physical medium, the device allows users to remain connected while away from their phones and computers. Consumers yearning for digital detox through analogue experiences is a key theme within our A/W 19/20 Design Direction Captivate, which examines how products are tapping into the human psyche to offer impressive digital-like effects in physical spaces. 

See Essentialist Communities for insights into how and why consumers are seeking low-tech lifestyles, and Circuit for how embedded, human-centric design is catering to this emerging consumer group. 

Scribit’s crowdfunding campaign launches on June 5 after being presented at this year’s Milan Design Week. Our Milan coverage will be published on April 27.