Rough Crit

There are two technical sides to my project, one being the lights, and the other the sound. The sound code I have from my last project, so to reimpliment it will not be much of a problem. This will mostly consist of dealing with capacitance issues of longer wires, which should resolve itself through the use of a intermediary capacitance sensor (although I haven’t tested this yet).

The lights prove a little more challenging. I discussed with Jake Marsico his workflow on doing installations such as the one I’m attempting, and following his pointers have come up with the following. I’ve designed a passive animation in processing, and then will sample points on that animation, and send the RGB values out from processing. These will then be assigned to the correct light based on a csv file exported from the rhino layout of the entire project. I have not yet tested this full scale as I haven’t been able to acquire the lights or the fadecandy that I plan on using yet. However the animation and csv are created, and I’m confident that this workflow will work out in the end, espescially with cursory guidance from Jake.

Here is the animation that will be passively displayed on the LEDs behind the map: sketch_171116a

The next steps are definetly to begin with material tests and mock ups, I would have liked to do this sooner but wanted to wait until I had time to discuss the project with Slee.

Some changes that need to happen with the design are bringing in more of an aspect of realization about pittsburgh. Not necessarily education, but realizing something that was at the bounds of conciousness beforehand.

Wearable-ish Synth

After prototyping the capactive sensors and the polyphonic function I went about creating an enclosure for the full piece. I lazer cut and engraved a small box to fit in the palm of ones hand, and added a strap for security and comfort. It’s not the most ergonomic thing in the world, but it functions…

I ran into extensive problems with the capacitive sensors and wiring. Hopefully someon can exlpain this to me, but for some reason whenever I used wires longer than about ~6 inches they would begin to trigger from the proximity to the power wire. I then took apart the box and added another slot to run the sensor wires through, this proved also innefective as I ran into the same problem with longer wires. If I had more time I would have set up the whole thing inside the box, but at this point I had already taken it apart several times and was doubtful I could fit everything inside this small of a form factor. I settled for being able to hold the thing, and just not move around too much.

It has a volume control on the breadboard, and you can switch notes and key by changing the pins the wires go into.

I was unable to integrate the 3axis accelerometer for the other hand, but I’m happy with the piece as it is.

Happy to demonstrate in class!

Wearable Synth Prototype

My final goal for this project is to create a 5 tone sythesizer which can be held in one hand, while the other holds a 3 axis accelerometer to control pitch bend and modulation. We’ll see if I actually get there…

In it’s current state I’ve gotten the sythesizer portion working fairly well. I’ve taken some code from a source I found online for a polyphonic synth, that to be honest was far too complicated for me to really understand, however I was able to parse it down and edit it to suit my needs. There are some issues with volume that I need to address, perhaps just try a larger speaker, as well as some issues with unintentional pitch modulation that I think is due to wires not being quite insulated and touching since it goes away everytime I jiggle the breadboard.

I’m pleased with how the capacitive touch works, and how responsive it is in general.


Assignment 4: Romeo & Juliet

For this design, I first thought of a famous story to tackle. Which is more fitting than the infamous tragedy of the two forbidden lovers? Romeo and Juliet simply want to be together, but if either of their families catch them it’s over.

My project sybolizes this using three servos, and an h bridge controlling a set of LED’s. I had to use servos instead of dc motors, because understanding position was key. The audience controls Romeo and juliet, and tries to avoid a patrolling guard. If the guard sees them together, he splits them apart and the two must go back home.

Project files here:

I had a lot of trouble with this project. First of all, I really liked my idea for a story portrayal, but was unsure of how to work an hbridge into it. I sifted through several ideas and finally decided on a very straightforward was of using it to control LED states. The biggest trouble came with testing the servos, two of them turned out to be broken, and much of my time was wasted troubleshooting why they were not working. I was then attempting to run three servos off of arduino power, which I read online was possible, and it was just causing the weirdest malfunctions. Sometimes they would just move randomly, and only rarely would it short the board, which finally tipped me off to the problem after hours of messing around with controls. I had originally wanted to use rotary potentiometers to change the position of romeo and juliet, but I switched them out because I thought that they were potentially causing the problem. If I had the project to do over again, I would put them back in, and add some buzzers or a haptic feedback device to simulate getting caught more than just the LEDs. I would also put more time into the creation and craft of the system, likely laser cutting custom parts instead of using found materials.


Assignment 3 Christoph Eckrich

I used several solenoids and a IR motion sensor to create my device. I think I’d like to call it “monster in a box” or something along those lines… Anyway, I envision him as this cute little guy that gets very scared and skittish when you approach him. He can only peek out one side of the box though.

The IR sensor reads the distance, and then a random pattern displays on the solenoids, increasing in speed as you approach.