FabricatINK explores the personal fabrication of irregularly-shaped low-power displays using electronic ink (E ink). E ink is a programmable bicolour material used in traditional form-factors such as E readers. It has potential for more versatile use within the scope of personal fabrication of custom-shaped displays, and it has the promise to be the pre-eminent material choice for this purpose. We appraise technical literature to identify properties of E ink, suited to fabrication. We identify a key roadblock, universal access to E ink as a material, and we deliver a method to circumvent this by upcycling broken electronics. We subsequently present a novel fabrication method for irregularly-shaped E ink displays. We demonstrate our fabrication process and E ink's versatility through ten prototypes showing different applications and use cases. By addressing E ink as a material for display fabrication, we uncover the potential for users to create custom-shaped truly bistable displays.
The ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (https://chi2022.acm.org/)