Jul.19, 2013

Researchers at the Input Devices and Music Interaction Lab at McGill University have developed "prosthetic digital instruments" using digital technology and 3D printing.

For three years, designers worked closely with dancers, musicians, composers and a choreographer to develop instruments that are visually striking, utilize advanced sensing technologies, and are rugged enough for extensive use in performance.

The complex, transparent shapes are lit from within, and include articulated spines, curved visors and ribcages. Unlike most computer music control interfaces, they function both as hand-held, manipulable controllers and as wearable, movement-tracking extensions to the body. Further, since the performers can smoothly attach and detach the objects, these new instruments deliberately blur the line between the performers' bodies and the instrument being played.

Using digital fabrication technologies such as laser-cutters and 3D printers, each of the nearly thirty working instruments produced for the project has embedded sensors, power supplies and wireless data transceivers, allowing a performer to control the parameters of music synthesis and processing in real time through touch, movement, and orientation.

The signals produced by the instruments are routed through an open-source peer-to-peer software system the IDMIL team has developed for designing the connections between sensor signals and sound synthesis parameters.

Watch the 15 minute documentary video below which explains the development process and shows the instruments in action.



 


Posted in 3D Printing Applications

 

 

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