Dining Philosophers Plate

  • Tasked with reappropriating old silver-plate tableware, I found myself instantly attracted to this plate, with its simple, colonial-esque ball motif around the rim.
    Looking into plates, I came across the Dining Philosopher's Problem. An example for multitasking in computers, the problem features five philosophers sitting around a table, with a fork between each of them. The philosophers may only eat when they have both the fork to their right and to their left in hand.
    I was struck by the peculiar imagery of needing two forks to eat. Consequently, I decided to split my plate in half and construct a base. I then created a simple locking mechanism requring two modified forks to make the plate whole and usable again.
    Soldering on this scale, with the plating flaking off and the discrepancy in mass of the plate and constructed addition, was a challenge, as is apparent in the final photo of the plate prior to powder coating. Ultimately, however, the powder coating gave the plate the look of porcelain. Set on a table, it calls for user interaction and engagement.
  • Note: All of the small balls along the above were made by balling up wire, and then soldering the individual orbs along the seam.