Everyone has those people on Instagram: The ones who post 10 selfies a day, or share only photos of “inspirational” quotes set over stock art. But whether you’re sick of scrolling through dozens of baby snaps or griping over gratuitous fitness posts, a new project from a Philadelphia and Boston-based company will help you nix those annoying pics from your Instagram feed anonymously. “The best thing about Instagram is that it captures and shares a person’s unique perspective,” Pic Nix’s creators write. “Sadly, unique perspectives have started to become anything but… Enter Pic Nix and the little robot that could.”
Anonymously judging other people on the internet is easy, but doing it well can be difficult. Enter Pic Nix, a free service that lets you casually (and anonymously) shame a fellow Instagram user for over-posting one of “16 offenses” like too many photos of beer, cats, food, lattes, or dreaded selfies. Ad agency Allen & Gerritsen, which came up with the project, has put together a warning image for each of these that can be posted on a @PicNixer account on Instagram, and will call your friend by name and offense in the comments. What makes Pic Nix particularly noteworthy is what’s going on behind the scenes. Your image and a corresponding message are chosen and pecked out on a smartphone by robot the group has called Silent B.O.B. It types with a stylus that’s hooked up to an Arduino-powered X-Y plotter that guides it to the precise parts of Instagram’s app. The messages in each post (complete with an @ mention for your target) are then typed out on a nearby Bluetooth keyboard, and it’s sent on its way.