Difference between revisions of "MakerFaire"

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[[Image:MuthaBoard.jpg]]
 
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[[Image:Avrboard.jpg]]
 
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==Feedback Piano==
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The Feedback Piano was originally built to make the sound design for a production of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. It is a computer-controlled feedback loop which engages the strings as a sort of resonant memory. Any sound made in its vicinity will hang sustained in the air as it is slowly transformed. Its sound is at once familiar and alien, a fitting backdrop for the surreal world inhabited by these characters.
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video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vz2HwwG1KC8
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audio: http://www.alloyelectric.com/music/halcyonic.mp3
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==Mutha Rubboard==
 
==Mutha Rubboard==
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==Myrtle==
 
 
Myrtle is a music controller that communicates with a computer via OSC (Open Sound Control, an open-ended machine communication protocol) and MIDI simultaneously. The interface is primarily designed for controlling the pitch, amplitude envelope, and rhythm of three sound sources in real-time. Designed in conjunction with the Pd environment, Myrtle currently controls a bank of FM synthesizers via OSC, and can transmit 12 different user selectable MIDI notes via a standard MIDI out port. These notes are triggered real-time using a fader.
 
 
[[Image:Myrtle_whiteback_s.jpg]]
 
 
Myrtle was designed to be used in a live-performance environment, played solo or as part of an ensemble. Instead of an "all-in-one" design, the functions of Myrtle are fairly specific, giving it a unique sound and feel. However, since it is only a controller and not a stand-alone instrument, it can be mapped to any number of different sounds or devices, limited only by the numerical data it puts out. The typical usage of the controller is with the left hand controlling pitch via the foam strips (see below), and the right hand manipulating the various controls on the right side. There are many ways to use the controller differently than this, however. The goal was to create a new and unique tool for musical expression, and integrated into that goal was the idea that Myrtle would have the ability to control audio synthesis in complicated ways, using an intuitive and easy-to-use design. The combination of 3 different controls - a fader, optical sensors, and a series of buttons, used in conjunction with one another , were all integral in achieving this goal.
 
 
[[Image:Myrtle_strips.jpg]]
 
 
Please see the detailed Myrtle project page here: [http://ccrma.stanford.edu/~breeder/projects/myrtle/myrtle.html http://ccrma.stanford.edu/~breeder/projects/myrtle/myrtle.html]
 
 
[[Image:Myrtle_controls.jpg]]
 
 
==Trees of Pythagoras==
 
The Trees of Pythagoras is an acoustic, electromagnetically-actuated, computer-controlled, long-stringed instrument, with the important distinction of being a single instrument composed of three, physically separate parts. Each piece is, in essence, constructed like a square, extra-large member of the violin family. Each piece consists of a large soundbox connected to a long steel string about ten feet long. Each piece sounds acoustically with a wide dynamic range, but only one unit is intended to be played by a musician. The other two pieces are actuated using electromagnets, which are controlled through a Max/MSP patch. Additionally, all three pieces have piezo-electric transducers which feeds the sound of each unit back to the computer. The Trees of Pythagoras is a concert instrument intended for live performance.
 
 
[[Image:Trees_1.jpg]]
 
 
The three soundboxes are all similar in construction to a member of the violin family. They are constructed using a variety of plywoods, eliminating differences in wood stiffness due to grain direction, thus allowing for the square shape. Different thicknesses and sometimes different cuts of plywood are used for the top and back plates allowing for two different sets of plate resonances. Each has an internal architecture with a soundpost and bass bar. Each unit uses a standard contrabass bridge. An important difference to the violin family, is that the top and back plates of these soundboxes are considerably more flexible allowing for greater coupling with the internal air column resonance. Steel signpost bar is employed as a suitable neck and standard 18 gauge steel wire from the local hardware store is used as a string. The string is freestanding, not unlike an Erhu, and connects to the steel bar at the bottom, lays over the bridge, and is attached at the top of the unit to a tuning peg inserted directly into the steel bar.
 
 
[[Image:Trees_elect.jpg]]
 
  
Two of the three units are actuated using an electromagnet assembly. This assembly is then powered using a standard audio amplifier. I acquired fairly powerful electromagnets which have resistances of around 4 ohms at 0 Hz, like many small speakers. For this instrument, the priority was force. I needed to be able to create large, low-frequency waves on the steel strings at a respectable amplitude. Because I am interested in complex sounds, issues concerning distortion are not important. After much research and experimentation, I created an assembly using two electromagnets, facing each other on either side of the steel string. Using ideas developed by Edgar Berdahl and Steven Backer (see
 
[http://ccrma.stanford.edu/~sbacker/empp/berdahl_backer.pdf  http://ccrma.stanford.edu/~sbacker/empp/berdahl_backer.pdf]), I added two rare-earth magnets on either side of each electromagnet which intensifies the magnetic field. A stereo
 
audio amplifier is then used to feed the same signal to both electromagnets with the polarity reversed for one so that while one magnet is pushing the other is pulling. This design provides ample force while still being powered by a small wattage amplifier. With too much power, the electromagnets will overheat. To provide additional assistance with this, each
 
electromagnet is attached to a heat sink. For all three units, I constructed a basic piezo-electric transducer using piezo discs and an op-amp based impedance buffer as a pre-amplifier.
 
  
[[Image:Trees_magnets.jpg]]
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==Swing Set==
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[[Image:pendulum.jpg]]
  
==Accordiatron==
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The Swing Set is a simple idea: a set of pendulums which control musical parameters.  The dynamics of the pendulums, with their inherent rhythms and a tendency to conserve energy efficiently, allow musician to play them in several modes; the player can respect the dynamics, or alter them according to his will.  When controlled with a computer, this allows for a surprisingly playable musical instrument.
  
The Accordiatron is a new MIDI controller for real-time performance based on the paradigm of a conventional squeeze box or concertina. It translates the gestures of a performer to the standard communication protocol of MIDI, allowing for flexible mappings of performance data to sonic parameters. When used in conjunction with a real-time signal processing environment, the Accordiatron becomes an expressive, versatile musical instrument. A combination of sensory outputs providing both discrete and continuous data gives the subtle expressiveness and control necessary for interactive music.
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Many digital interfaces choose power and flexibility over ease-of-use and intelligibility. Moreover, many of them are overwhelmed by metaphors from the computing world.  Our goal with the Swing Set was to produce a set of controllers which are immediately intuitive and break away from this pattern.  Furthermore, we wanted to present something that had its own tangible physical dynamics; with a pendulum, we were able to capitalize not only on natural resonance and decay, but also the fringe benefits of physical devices, like inherent haptic feedback and visual intelligibility.
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In order to create compelling musical experiences with the devices, we decided not to limit ourselves to only using the pendulums as controllers: our installation also includes a computer interface where an operator chooses samples, volume levels, and melodic patterns.
  
[[Image:Atron_1.jpg]]
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Our Swing Set consists of two main devices: the Swing Set proper, which consists of three pendulums, each with a dedicated purpose, and then the Transfer Pendulum, which is a set of two loosely-coupled pendulums dedicated for use as a tangible mixer.
  
The Accordiatron detects the rotation and distance between the hands, the latter by means of a potentiometer embedded in the scissor linkage that connects the two end panels. Buttons on either end panel can be used for triggering notes, samples, or any other discrete input. The Accordiatron is based on the premise building a new interface to capture what are known to be expressive performance gestures, but divorcing those gestures from a particular sound source. The Accordiatron is gathering a growing repertoire of compositions using a variety of mappings.
 
  
[[Image:Atron_3.jpg]]
 
  
[http://ccrma.stanford.edu/~gurevich/accordiatron/ http://ccrma.stanford.edu/~gurevich/accordiatron/]
 
  
  
 
[[Category:PID]]
 
[[Category:PID]]
 
[[Category:Projects]]
 
[[Category:Projects]]

Revision as of 23:34, 11 March 2008

MuthaBoard.jpg


Introduction

The Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA -- pronounced "karma") is an interdisciplinary center at Stanford University dedicated to artistic and technical innovation at the intersection of music and technology. We are a place where musicians, engineers, computer scientists, designers, and researchers in HCI and psychology get together to develop technologies and make art. In recent years, the question of how we interact physically with electronic music technologies has fostered a growing new area of research that we call Physical Interaction Design for Music. We emphasize practice-based research, using DIY physical prototying with low-cost and open source tools to develop new ways of making and interacting with sound. At the Maker Faire, we will demonstrate the low-cost hardware prototyping kits and our customized open source Linux software distribution that we use to develop new sonic interactions, as well as some exciting projects that have been developed using these tools. Below you will find photos and descriptions of the tools and projects we will demonstrate.

Software Tools

Planet CCRMA at Home is a collection of open source programs that you can add to a computer running Fedora Linux to transform it into an audio/multi-media workstation with a low-latency kernel, current audio drivers and a nice set of music, midi, audio and video applications (with an emphasis on real-time performance). It replicates most of the Linux environment we have been using for years here at CCRMA for our daily work in audio and computer music production and research. Planet CCRMA is easy to install and maintain, and can be upgraded from our repository over the web. Bootable CD and DVD install images are also available. This software is free.

http://ccrma.stanford.edu/planetccrma/software


Ardour sm.png

Ardour - Multitrack Sound Editor


[[Image: Hydrogen sm.png]]Example.jpgExample.jpg

Hydrogen - Drum Sequencer


Pd-jack-jaaa sm.png

Pd, Jack and Jaaa - Real-time audio tools

Hardware Tools

In our courses, we use a prototyping kit based on Atmel AVR microcontrollers, with Pascal Stang's AVRmini at the core. To the AVRmini, we attach an I2C LCD display, solderless breadboard strips, a loudspeaker and sometimes a MIDI jack. In student lab exercises and for prototyping, we hook up sensor circuits on the breadboard and send control signals to a Linux PC over USB, serial, MIDI or Ethernet in order to control open source real-time sound synthesis and processing software. These prototypes are then often built into larger-scale music and interactive sound art projects like the ones below that we will demonstrate at the Maker Faire.

Avrboard.jpg


Feedback Piano

The Feedback Piano was originally built to make the sound design for a production of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. It is a computer-controlled feedback loop which engages the strings as a sort of resonant memory. Any sound made in its vicinity will hang sustained in the air as it is slowly transformed. Its sound is at once familiar and alien, a fitting backdrop for the surreal world inhabited by these characters.

video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vz2HwwG1KC8

audio: http://www.alloyelectric.com/music/halcyonic.mp3



Mutha Rubboard

MuthaBoard.jpg

The Mutha Rubboard is a musical controller based on the rubboard, washboard or frottoir metaphor commonly used in the Zydeco music genre of South Louisiana. It is not only a metamorphosis of a traditional instrument, but a modern bridge of exploration into a rich musical heritage. It uses capacitive and piezo sensing technology to output MIDI and raw audio data.

This new controller reads the key placement in two parallel planes by using radio capacitive sensing circuitry expanding greatly on the standard corrugated metal playing surface. The percussive output normally associated with the rubboard is captured through piezo contact sensors mounted directly on the keys (the playing implements). Additionally, mode functionality is controlled by discrete switching on the keys.

This new instrument is meant to be easily played by both experienced players and those new to the rubboard. It lends itself to an expressive freedom by placing the control surface on the chest and allowing the hands to move uninhibited about it or by playing it in the usual way, preserving its musical heritage.



Swing Set

Pendulum.jpg

The Swing Set is a simple idea: a set of pendulums which control musical parameters. The dynamics of the pendulums, with their inherent rhythms and a tendency to conserve energy efficiently, allow musician to play them in several modes; the player can respect the dynamics, or alter them according to his will. When controlled with a computer, this allows for a surprisingly playable musical instrument.

Many digital interfaces choose power and flexibility over ease-of-use and intelligibility. Moreover, many of them are overwhelmed by metaphors from the computing world. Our goal with the Swing Set was to produce a set of controllers which are immediately intuitive and break away from this pattern. Furthermore, we wanted to present something that had its own tangible physical dynamics; with a pendulum, we were able to capitalize not only on natural resonance and decay, but also the fringe benefits of physical devices, like inherent haptic feedback and visual intelligibility. In order to create compelling musical experiences with the devices, we decided not to limit ourselves to only using the pendulums as controllers: our installation also includes a computer interface where an operator chooses samples, volume levels, and melodic patterns.

Our Swing Set consists of two main devices: the Swing Set proper, which consists of three pendulums, each with a dedicated purpose, and then the Transfer Pendulum, which is a set of two loosely-coupled pendulums dedicated for use as a tangible mixer.