Free Art & Technology (F-A-T) Lab


Pittsburgh & anywhere

2011 to present

The informal code that vagabonds developed in the 19th century to offer warnings and help each other cope with the uncertainties of nomadic life inspired the QR_Hobo_Codes project by Free Art and Technology (F.A.T.) Lab, a Pittsburgh-based research network devoted to enriching the public domain through the development of creative technologies and media. F.A.T. Lab created 100 QR codes (freely downloadable lasercut-ready stencils) to provide advice and warnings to modern-day digital nomads. Codes include “vegans beware,” “hidden cameras,” and “those aren’t women.” QR_Hobo_Codes is one in a suite of what F.A.T. calls its “homebrew infoviz graffiti tools for locative and situated information display.”

Accessibility, Community, Information
4 days
Problem - need for urban guidance
Solution - covert advice and warnings for modern-day digital nomads