Dec.30, 2013

Visualizing sound is typically the province of imagination. For centuries, people have been experimenting with making sound and vibration visible by way of exciting media like liquids and particles. Today, with the wide-reaching cutting-edge technology, more artists and DIY experimenters are looking to uncover the nature of sound - often resulting in great eye candy.

Led by interaction designer Lukasz Karluk, HoloDecks is an umbrella title given to a number of projects which focus on transforming sound through different mediums.

Beginning with an audio track 'Zebra', by Oneohtrix Point Never, Karluk used a custom application built in openFrameworks to visualize its sound waves. The base shape chosen for the visualization is a disc which has always been a ubiquitous shape associated with music storage formats such as compact discs and vinyl records. Audio data from the song displaces the geometry of the disc to create a swirly visual echo of the audios last few seconds.

Karluk then took a snapshot of the generated 3d model, and exported the file in .ply format which then needed to be converted into .obj format so it can be printed with a Makerbot 3D printer.

Up to this point, the sound has been transformed from pure audio data, into a software visualization and then materialized into the real world using a 3D printer. A final transformation takes place by augmenting the 3D printed sound sculpture using a mobile device to see another layer of audio reactive visuals mapped to the object.

Take a look at the demonstration video below, and see how music is transformed through computer rendering, 3D sculpting, 3D printing and augmented reality. The custom built HoloDecks Swirl audio sculptures are also available on Shapeways shop in different materials.


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lassi wrote at 11/19/2014 5:12:33 AM:

steve, you mean a scope? sure. just run a visualizer. but if you have healthy ears then the use cases are pretty limited, except if you just want something pretty to look at while trippin'. but then, I'd recommend more of downloading winamp and a bunch of trippy visualizers.

Alan R wrote at 3/25/2014 5:39:22 PM:

I would like to see a visualization of room accoustics for sound reduction and reduction of sound echoes for specific room dimensions, diffusers and absorbers. You could input co-effecients of absorption, diffusion and area of same on particular walls, along with location of speakers to visualize the results and reduce trial and error of room/auditorium treatments. Physical experimentation is expensive.

steve wrote at 1/4/2014 6:17:53 AM:

using new glasses technology, do you thinks it could be possible to create an app that allows for sound visualization? i.e. meta pro, google glass?



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