ITP Spring Show 2009
Sunday, May 10, 2-6pm & Monday, May 11, 5-9 pm

Marianne Carbon
Milena Selkirk

rock unsteady

This interactive piece consists of one glove with flex sensors in the fingers and a hat and various other objects which have accelerometers in them. Up to 6 participants at once can use the objects in various ways to create sounds together.

Introduction to Physical Computing

This project was designed by M.V. Carbon and Milena Selkirk in our physical computing class with Scott Fitzgerald. This project involves a glove with flex sensors on the fingers and a foot pedal. Each finger on the glove triggers midi samples and can change the pitch of the samples according to how much the fingers are bent. There are also various head pieces with accelerometers in them and foot triggers and belt triggers which activate midi samples. The samples' pitches fluctuate according to where the head is positioned.

We are interested in rock music traditions and also gaming and observed the ways music has been approached in the past through these genres.

Avant garde musicians, children, gamers, rockers, mystics

User Scenario
Five or six people perform together to form a mesh of sounds determined on their movement. Several people wear gloves, one curls his fingers, while another moves his hand horizontally, then vertically. A third person wears a head piece and shakes his head. Once the user is familiar with the "instrument" they will use their body in unconventional ways to play "music."

Rock Unsteady is a collection of gloves and head pieces. We are interested in the design and look of the pieces because the items should live up to the music they make. We would like to see people having fun and learning about music and creating their own sound pieces while playing with our garments. We'd also like to incorporate them into our own performance work.

We burnt out a few LEDs, broke flex sensors, wasted a few circuit boards...
We learned how to use an arduino micro-controller, breadboard, how to make a circuit board and how to solder intricate circuits. We also learned a lot about the nature of the sensors we used, especially that flex sensors do not measure movement in a geometrical fashion. We also got familiar with Midi, the musical electronic sound protocol, how it works and is transmitted and the programs it is compatible with.