Aram Bartholl writes:

I am pleased to preview ‘Dead Drops‘ a new project which I started off as part of my ongoing EYEBEAM residency in NYC the last couple weeks. ‘Dead Drops’ is an anonymous, offline, peer to peer file-sharing network in public space. I am ‘injecting’ USB flash drives into walls, buildings and curbs accessable to anybody in public space. You are invited to go to these places (so far 5 in NYC) to drop or find files on a dead drop. Plug your laptop to a wall, house or pole to share your files and date. Each dead drop contains a readme.txt file explaining the project. ‘Dead Drops’ is still in progress, to be continued here and in more cities. Full documentation, movie, map and ‘How to make your own dead drop’ manual coming soon!

In the meanwhile drop some files here!

87 3rd Avenue, Brooklyn, NY (Makerbot)
Empire Fulton Ferry Park, Brooklyn, NY (Dumbo)
235 Bowery, NY (New Museum)
Union Square, NY (Subway Station 14th St)
West 21st Street, NY (Eyebeam)

Becky Stern

Becky Stern

Becky Stern ( is a DIY guru and director of wearable electronics at Adafruit. She publishes a new project video every week and hosts a live show on YouTube. Formerly Becky was Senior Video Producer for MAKE. Becky lives in Brooklyn, NY and belongs to art groups Free Art & Technology (“release early, often, and with rap music”) and Madagascar Institute (“fear is never boring”).

  • kaspar carr

    this is brilliant and i bet even more people would get involved if you expand new spots and list only the GPS coordinates. this will make it a game to find the spot. then people can find them, “swap the cache” (download a fun mp3, upload something in exchange like a photo or something)

    GeoFlashing revolution begin!

  • Donna

    You could wood bore a hole and epoxy these in place a littlle easier and faster. I don’t usually carry wet concrete, but hey, maybe that’s just me. This would facilitate more locations. Folks with a wooden leg could be geo-located and create a mobile access point. Also, instead of looking like a total dweeb with your laptop against a building, not to mention conspicuous – use a female to male USB cable. This prevents permanent damage to a location and saves you from having to stick your laptop against someones smelly leg.

  • Rick

    Sounds like an interesting venture but it also strikes me as open to abuse and users had better make sure their virus protection is up to date and water tight.

  • anachrocomputer

    It’s possible to get waterproof USB connectors, such as the Bulgin Buccaneer range. You could set up a waterproof USB type B socket, with a screw-on cap. Then a user could bring an ordinary USB A-B cable, unscrew the cap, and plug in!

  • ibutton77

    * USB autorun virus. Most Windows users are not well protected against this

    * Like guy above said, waterproof? Female connector maybe? Or cable hanging out a foot or two with a male connector.

    * Kid sees shiny thing in wall -> Kid kicks shiny thing. Or, if it’s a cable, it will be pulled.

    * What in the world is in this DCIM folder thingy? There must be over 9000 images in here of.. OH GOD, Oh my god my eyes are bleeding! I didn’t even know that was physically possible! I mean that’s got to be shopped or .. OH MY GOD THAT’S NOT SHOPPED! I had better call the cops and let them know how I found the place. :P

  • revcripe

    Awesome! Can’t wait for more information and the manual! This would be great where I live!!

  • Michelle

    looks like a good way to obtain a virus.

  • Atwas911

    Oh look.. Its the MakerBot Douchebag..