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Magazine > Lesson #8

Lesson 8 - 20/12/2011

Submission of the Sound Assignment
Four groups and four interactions that create and change sound in reaction to users' tactile actions.

Design Lab | Interactive Design | HIT

Jenny Bahar, Doron Segal, Shahar Yaacoby, Itay Kurgan: FormalUrbanOrgan

The group embarked from the idea of a barcode-based piano and arrived at a considerably more interesting result: a formal urban organ, an object incorporating a track, gray rectangular units, and transparent Perspex rectangles. The gray and transparent rectangles are arranged on the track, and when moved along it music is created that is composed of music strips that are unique to each gray rectangle. The gray rectangles differ from one another in form, weight and texture, thus creating a connection between the object's tactility and the sound it creates and adds to the mix. The transparent Perspex rectangles are of varying widths and determine the length of the pauses between one strip and another. Using the object is captivating due to the connection the group has created between material and music in all their complexities.

Design Lab | Interactive Design | HIT

In terms of technology, the system is based on RFID tags and a matching sensor. Each tag has a unique identity it transmits wirelessly when it moves close to the sensor. A program written in Processing language creates and plays the mix of sounds according to the order of tags it registers.

Shay Merci, Omer Ben-Naim, Aviad Fux: KoSound

This group drew its inspiration from glass harps and chose to relate to sound itself as liquid that can fill a glass, react to the movement of the glass, and pour out of it. The glass is tipped over and filled with a sound recording. Holding the glass at different angles and shaking it plays the recorded sound at varying speed and volume until the sound is poured out of it.

Design Lab | Interactive Design | HIT

Motion sensing is by means of an accelerometer that senses changes in the angle in relation to the direction of gravity. Computer interface is by means of a Phidgets controller, and the program operating it all was written in a Max development environment.

Dana Mik, Roni Rosen, Geva Rosenthal, Osher Shukrun: Weeeeee Chair

The group decided to introduce a playful dimension to an ordinary office chair by adding sound to the movement of the chair's wheels around the room. By adding a human voice to the object, the group managed to externalize the voice associated with the experience. The voice changes in accordance with the height of the seat so that a taller person will produce a high voice and a shorter person a lower tone. Additionally, the longer the movement the voice becomes more diverse, thus creating motivation for the user to try and execute as long a roll as possible. Encouraging the user to achieve greater distance with the chair is an element of gamifying the experience.

The chair's movements are registered by a computer mouse installed beneath the seat and decoded by a program written in Max that runs on a laptop connected to the backrest.

Design Lab | Interactive Design | HIT

Dina Rubanovitch Even-Paz, Shmulik Mauda, David Kantor: This is Sonic Tap

The fourth group engaged in adding a sound dimension to a home water tap. The problem identified is that it is difficult to know the temperature of the water without touch. The interaction was built into a tap but demonstrated on a model tap, thus avoiding flooding the Lab. With every change in water temperature a piano note is sounded. When the temperature goes up or down, the notes go up and down respectively. The intention is for the user to develop an association between the temperature and the notes in order to know exactly when the water reaches the desired temperature at a given moment, on the understanding that every person and action has a different temperature suited to them.

Design Lab | Interactive Design | HIT

The group used an LN35 temperature sensor and a Phidgets controller and rotary sensors. The program was written in a Max environment.

Can You Hear Me Now?

After the submissions we hear a lecture by Michal Rinott on audio interactions. As an outcome of advanced screen and display technologies, the world is becoming an increasingly visual place. Voice, sound and tone are relatively neglected, but possess vast interaction potential because the human brain remembers and recognizes sounds very well.

Michal shows us a few examples:

- Audio Shaker - an interaction that treats sound like material.
- Shoogle - clever interactive sonification for cell phones.
- ScreamBody - a portable personal screaming space.

She also introduces us to the SonicTexting project in which she developed a means of writing based on human speech phonemes connected to the various letters by means of a joystick.

Interaction With Balls

We're split into new groups and informed that our new project is based on the concept of a ball. Next week each group will present at least five limitation-free ideas in the form of a simulation film or initial model. It'll be round and interesting...

Happy Donut Festival!

Until next time...

Photographs by Itay Kurgan and Omer Ben-Naim
Written by David Kantor


- Introduction

- Lesson 1

- Lesson 2

- Lesson 3

- Lesson 4

- Lesson 5

- Lesson 6

- Lesson 7

- Lesson 8

- Lesson 9

- Lesson 10

- Lesson 11

- Lesson 12

- Final Lesson

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