Anthem: BOM, Description, Plan

'Anthem' is a kinetic audio sculpture that will feature pendulums: a TV set on the end of a swinging rope and a globe(s) enclosing a speaker.  As the user sets these elements into motion the randomized composite 'world' anthem will be generated, using the MIDI files for each country's national anthems to create a playback out of the swinging speakers.  At the top, the pendulums will hinge at potentiometers, which will affect the audio / video playback.  The video may feature imagery from the respective countries or it may feature webcam feeds from the different places, and the audio will be affected by the potentiometers opening and closing perhaps with a doppler effect, or a frequency filter.

  The idea is to create a disorienting aural experience with a captivating and political visual impact.

Questions for Playtesting:

Is the physical interaction understandable? 

Would you have liked some instruction or explanation of the project before beginning ?

Do you find the concept/audio/visual interesting?


Bill of Materials:

Final Project Idea: Musical Pendulums

the idea here is that you have varying height pendulum arms - in this case the ratios are 1:1, 2:3, 1:2, 1:3.

a sound is played each time the bob passes equilibrium (every other time it reaches the bottom of it's swing).

I'm not sure I like this iteration of the idea all that much.  Perhaps the lengths need to be more similar in length, for visual and sonic effect.  It does lend itself to a series of short notes that, with more pendulum arms, would make a nice wave effect.  Then, though, you basically make a large chimes instrument, but without the chiming...

I do like the idea of a nicely finished, wall-mounted piece of sculpture combining simple sound and physics.  It could get much more interesting if the pendulums triggered MIDI signals.  endless possibilities.  Perhaps it deconstructs and reforms a familiar song (i.e. one pendulum handles drums, another bass line, another the melody..).  Something resembling an inverted metronome.  Would be neat if you could continue to interact with it in a musical way such that you didn't necessarily just set it in motion and then watch as it does the same thing every time.  

Week 7: Midterm project proposal

Working title: Anthem.  A hanging globe acts as a pendulum, and each time it reaches the bottom of it's swing it blocks a light source from hitting an oppositely mounted photocell sensor.  Each time this photocell detects darkness it tells the Arduino to send a signal via the serial USB input on a computer to randomly "change channels" on my p5 sketch which has preloaded all the national anthems of the countries from which us ITPer's hail.  The effect is that each time the installation is set in motion, a new composite world anthem is randomly generated and performed.

It's the beginning of a project which I anticipate becoming my final P-Comp project.  In that scenario, a new world anthem would perhaps be articulated via MIDI + soft synth sounds as opposed to these sourced orchestral recordings, producing a more cohesive, new age, and less fight-y soundtrack.  I'd also like to extend the length of the pendulum's arm so as to elongate the length of the swing cycle.  By coding a delay into the Arduino script it could also elongate the cycle by only sending the change channel signal on the event of every other pass by the photocell.

Week 6 : Synthesis Day

  Dror and I were paired up and began to pursue the idea of making a Serial Input Sensor into a controller that would act as a video transport device (i.e. play, pause, fwd, rewind) connected to a YouTube API.  This seemed daunting given the time allowed, so we pivoted to trying to do the same idea but with a pre-loaded piece of audio content.  

  Running into trouble with getting this to work we switched again, and were able to make our potentiometer control the pace of movement of a Jitter script from one of my earlier ICM p5 sketches.  We used the sensorValue variable as parameter of the Jitter script.   Behold :) -->