Alon Devorah, Gabriele Carotti-Sha, Andrew Forsyth


...And there was sound.

The staff chooses the wizard. That much has always been clear to those of us who have studied the ancient runes. These connections are deep and complex. An initial attraction, and then a mutual quest for experience, the staff learning from the wizard, the wizard from the staff.

But what good are our mere words? Humans, dwarves, elves, and any other beings we are humbled and grateful to have in our presence here today, come! Let us show you. Let us share in the adventure and discovery. Let us take you away to a world where you will be immersed entirely in the magic of sound.

O^3: A Controller Based Around Concentric Circles

David Bordow, Erich Peske

Our controller is a prototype based around one of the most fundamental controls: a turntable. Our goal is to implement the turntable in a way that has never been done. Using a stacked-gear mechanism, we are able to put one disk on top of another on top of another. The user will theoretically be able to hook up the O^3 to any editable parameter allowing fluid, tactile, and precise control for use in sampling, ambient, or whatever the imagination creates. We hope to continue our work on the controller into the next quarter and will strive to improve the product over time.

Sound of Sirens

Gina Collecchia, Kevin McElroy, Dan Somen

"Siren Organ" is an electro-mechanical instrument consisting of compressed air and motor-driven disks with evenly spaced perforations. Three different controllers were designed, each with a dedicated disk (the siren). These controllers contain a network of air tubes to direct air flow from a compressor to individual rings on the sirens. These rings have different numbers of equally spaced holes to create a fundamental frequency, and varying radii of the holes to create harmonics.

The motor speed can be controlled by a fader, creating frequency sweeps that are classic to the siren sound. A custom manifold of valves, buttons, and air pathways as well as ball valves and blow guns control the pressure of the compressed air. Hence, the performer can control volume in addition to pitch. A master valve connects to each controller and splits into 4 hoses + valves, to provide an upper limit of the possible pressure. The hose leading from the compressor is also split into 3 channels, feeding each controller.

This is an extension of a design by Bart Hopkin from the papers ""Sirens, Part One"" (Vol. 12, #4, pp. 13-18, June 1997) and ""Sirens Part Two"" (Vol. 13, #1, pp. 19-22, Sept. 1997), both in Experimental Musical Instruments.

Cyber Bully

Micah Arvey, Rooney Pitchford, Zach Saraf

The Cyber Bully is a digital guitar effects pedal that utilizes a USB trackball for effect control rather than a conventional on/off toggle switch, ideal for experimenting with wacky and practical guitar sounds on the fly. The trackball controls four effects; velocity in the positive y direction and negative y direction correlate to the strength of one effect each, while velocity in each x direction correlates to an effect, combining four effects into one setting. A diagonal spin results in a mix of the two effects based on the spin angle. Two switches allow for toggling through effect settings, one allows for bypass, and another implements an auxiliary, instantaneous effect specific to each effect setting. One additional knob controls total volume, and two other knobs set a default level for each effect when the ball is still. Effect processing is run through Pure Data.

Space Ball

Emily Graber, David Grunzwieg, Michael Mendoza, Kunal Datta

The Spaceball was designed by Music 250a students Emily Graber, Kunal Datta, Mike Mendoza and David Grunzweig. The device is intended to simplify 3D panning on large, multichannel sound systems. In the past, any type of panning for multichannel sound systems was done in software before the performance. Our goal was to design a logical interface to help users make the most of their sound system during a performance. The buttons moving around the surface of the Spaceball’s dome represent the perceived origin of the sound in space of a specific track, with the top of the dome representing the point directly above the user. The faders allow the user to control the volume of the each individual track.


Brie Bunge, Sophia Westwood

We built a musical instrument in the form of a giant kaleidoscope. Two bike wheels, filled with colorful gels, spin to control the bass line and the melody. Light streams the gels, reflecting in the kaleidoscope to produce brilliant visual effects to accompany the piece. We generate the harmony and melody via Hall effect sensors that detect magnets on the bike wheels and pass the input into a machine learning algorithm.

controlled environment

Brandon Cheung

This project is actually a preview for Brandon Cheung's Personal Statement in the Product Design program so there is very little that we can say about it.

Sonic Drop

Elliot Kermit-Canfied, Pablo Castellanos, Cooper Newby, Justin Li

Sonic Droplet is a self-contained interactive audio-visual sculpture comprised of water activated sensors mounted on a suspended, internally lit cube that glows in response to human interaction with the device. Meshing visual art with sound synthesis when the water sensors are activated, Sonic Droplet generates beautiful