Looking Outwards 04 – Yugyeong Lee

The Classyfier is a smart object, created by three students, that detects the beverages the users are drinking and through that naturally chooses music that fits the situation. This table enhance the atmosphere in different situations. Through identifying characteristic sounds, the table, through computational program, plays the appropriate music. Altough the final form is a simple, and quite small, just adequate to place few drinks, the table has built in microphone system with computational program that is “pre-trained” to have the ability to identify different drinks. For example, as shown in the video below, the user stirs the hot tea, which naturally creates sound. Then, the table analyze the sound to play music accordingly. It is interesting that the program is trained and the most interesting part of the project is that it is a smart object that naturally can bleed into the everyday life. Although in terms of form it is simple, the ambient it generates is very unique.

video in the link: http://www.creativeapplications.net/processing/the-classyfier-ai-detects-situation-and-appropriates-music/


I researched a lot of artists and watched a lot of installations and videos. Finally, the piece, NOMIS, by Jonathan Sparks really stood out and inspired me.

Nomis is a musical instrument. He wanted to make loop based music expressive and transparent with the use of human gesture and light.The artist combines three different sensibilities: sight, sound, and touch. Throughout this piece, Sparks looped and layered multiple sounds in order to make different melodies in real time. Each sound was represented by a different color. He emphasized the inclusion of light and gesture in order to make his piece more expressive and compelling at live performances.

This piece inspired me because this piece is highly interactive and demonstrates a response with every action. Every action is individualized and brought attention to. However, every action becomes part of a whole melody. This also reminds me of the DJ set many electric music performers use. But, I never thought it had this type of technology behind it.

Full website found here


As a music major, technology has affected our craft in both negative and positive ways. One of the most beneficial aspects of technology integrated into music, in my opinion, is the newfound ease that compositional programs provide composers, musicians, and creatives. Back in the day, composers would sit down and write hundreds of thousands of notes, one by one, on pieces of paper. This is a very slow method, erasing becomes a large hassle, and there is no way to hear what it sounds like completed, especially for compositions for large ensembles, unless one was to recruit the 50+ musicians necessary to create a full orchestra.

One of Beethoven’s original scores to exemplify the issues encountered while composing using pen and paper:

Composing on the computer allows the composer to quickly tap notes on the staff to write music. If the artist would like to get rid of a note, it is easy to click on it and press delete instead of erasing; one can even select an entire section to delete. One now has the ability to copy a melody, and paste it to have another instrument double the line, or even place it in another section of the piece. It is also possible to move a passage up or down by any interval, such as moving a melody down by an octave or changing the key by moving an entire piece a half-step or more up/down. In addition, there is a play-back setting that allows the composer to hear computer-generated instruments perform their work, and even listen to selected instruments individually. All of these features have greatly improved the speed and ease of composing.

Created by: Roger Dannenberg and Dominic Mazzoni, Carnegie Mellon University

There are a multitude of composition applications and computer programs. Some of the most common ones are Sibelius, Ableton Live, Audacity, Pro Tools, Garage Band, and MuseScore. There are many differences between all of them, as some have the ability to edit sound, while others are more adapted for writing in notes on a staff. For many of my composition assignments I do for music classes, I use a computer program to cleanly write out and listen to my assignments. It is extremely helpful as I am not particularly fluent on piano, so I can easily listen to the counterpoint of my four-part harmony without the struggle of playing it myself. All in all, composing music utilizing technology has changed the field of composition and the music world for the better.

Written Using C++


rsp1-Looking Outwards04

The project that I found this time is called Prismverse.


Prismverse is an art installation created by XEX for Dr. Jart+. It’s inspiration draws from the light rays that move through a diamond and its reflections that result from the multifaceted faces of the diamond structure. In short, it is inspired by Brilliant Cut, which according to the article linked above, is “a form that produces highest brilliance with maximized light return through its top.” The installation itself consists of a surrounding of complex geometrical tessellated mirror walls that produce visually pleasing reflections on the floor that is made of LED lights itself. It also produces unique omnidirectional sound qualities for the visitor.

With the use of software programs such as C4D, Redshift, Adobe Aftereffect, openFrameworksAbleton Live, Reaktor, Arduino, and Capacitive Sensors, the artists were able to achieve a breathtaking visual. The project itself illustrates an expertly executed installation of technology and art.

I personally liked this project because although it is similar to many other installations such a mirror maze, but it incorporates so many more complex elements, logic, and technology. Instead of a static installation where you see just your reflection, the installation now is something interactive and changeable. I thought it was interesting how the geometries were shaped as well. Its psychedelic qualities make it hard to look away and keep the visual interest of the viewer. I wonder now what the experience would be like to actually be within the installation itself.

Below is a video of the experience by the artists:


Matthew Erlebacher Looking Outward-04

One piece of sound art that I found to be interesting was the Hexome. The device sound beautiful while also looking aesthetically appealing. I think that what sells the look is its hexagonal shape. It is said that hexagons are the shape of nature, (many things in nature come in that for e.g. bee nests and turtle shells) and the shape is used to make this device incredibly attractive. The creator likely encoded each light with specific instructions on how to interact with each other using “if” and “else” statements. I think that the programmer’s creativity was able to manifest in the final project just by how much you can interact with it. The device can even do a small light show making it a highly versatile instrument. It also just looks fun to uses and see how many different combinations of sounds you can come up with.

gyueunp – Looking Outwards 04

Spectra (2004) is a series of installations created by the new media artist Ryoji Ikeda. It is produced using an array of xenon search lights that is accompanied by a sound system of a mathematically derived score. His work has been installed in multiple locations including London, Tasmania, and JFK International Airport, and the number of lights and scales vary depending on the sites. Its white lights and ultra-high frequency sound component present the viewers with an ethereal experience as they walk through the field of light. The scale of the work is one of its most noteworthy features; the xenon lights shoot straight up into the sky, allowing a broad range of audiences to see the work. I would love to experience the work’s symphony of ultra pure sine sound waves; its sound is just as beautiful and celestial as the captivating visuals.

Ryoju Ikeda’s website

More about Spectra

akluk – Section A – Looking outwards-04

The project that I have decided to write about is Liquid Percussion, by TRUMPIN or Gerhard Trimpin.

It is an acoustic sculpture that creates music based on the amount of rain. The water droplets will then fall and strike the various unique instrument at the bottom. The Artist has always been been very passionate about blending electronics, art and music together and this piece is no exception. I don’t think any specific algorithms are used in the creation of this project, since most of it is dependent on nature and rainfall. What really impresses me about this work is how its actually able to create such complex and interesting melodies and rhythms from this sculpture. You can see more of his work from the link below.


Lrospigl – Looking Outwards – 04 (Bebot)

Bebot is robot synth. It is an iPhone app that allows you to control the effects and the scale, all while a little robot sings at you. While I really like the app, what interested me more is that it doesn’t have a limiting range. It really is up to the suer and how they take it. For example, this man tested the limits of Bebot to make an interesting and complicated song.

Since it’s a multitouch app, the writer of the code cannot assume how many fingers the user is actually going to use. In the video for example, the user here used up to 4 fingers at a time, something that the author took account for.

Official Apple App store bebot site .

katieche – looking outwards 04

shimon the robot

Shimon is a robot first of his kind created at Georgia Institute of Technology. Unlike some robots who just make beeping noises and call that a song, Shimon actually has four arms and knows how to play traditional, analog instruments. He has been programmed with over 5,000 songs, two million motifs, riffs, and licks. Particularly, he specializes in the marimba. A lot of robots can play preprogrammed songs, as did Shimon for the beginning of his lifetime, but what’s fascinating about Shimon is that he now is able to play original compositions! Researchers are still working on how to improve his musical abilities, as current original compositions are a little sporadic since Shimon can’t think in long term structures as well. If you pay attention to his song, it seems like the music is produced in short bursts that complete the song.

hqq – secE – LookingOutwards 04

“With my pictures, I create a musical space. With my music I create a pictorial space. Pictures and music are equivalent. They meet in the head of the beholder and the listener, and they reveal something new in him.” – Rolf Julius

Ash is an installation art piece by Rolf Julius that uses small particles of ash from German fireplaces to help create a medium to visualize soundwaves. Julius recorded a variety of everyday sounds at differing pitches to create a highly diverse soundscape that the piece uses to create imaging. The piece receives reverberations that are sustained within the terra cotta pots that make up the body of the unit. A small fabric drum within the piece holds ash that jumps and separates when vibrations from the sound are generated. This achieves a different image depending on what sounds are picked up.

Computationally, this piece uses an analog system to develop a top-down processing script and, although coding was not directly involved in the process, it uses a computationally-driven inherent logic that allows the image to differ between iterations.

The piece was created in 1991 and is still on display at the Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.