The Agents Play Their Music

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Bringing the A.O.S.C. project to the next level – the agents play their music!

In the previous setup the agents functioned only as the ears of the system, listening to the acoustic environment and sending the data of the audio spectrum to the main server. Everything else, the analysis of the data streams, the resulting calculation of the parameters for the sound synthesis as well as playing back the music, all that happened on the server side.

Now we bring the music back to the agents!

The server only does the calculations and sends the stream of parameters back to the agents where the music is generated by a Pd patch.
That means, you can sit beside the agent, listen to your actual acoustic environment and – by using headphones – to the collective electronic soundscape composed by all the networked agents.
Now this system offers the possibility to directly observe the impact of the acoustic events at the agent’s place as well as direct acustic interaction with the system.

In the moment we have four agents running: Toronto, Lviv, Sydney and Bonaforth.

Currently we are working on the algorithm which is receiveing the data stream and calculates the control data for the music.

Here are some snippets.

aosc170731 is a YouTube video with syncronized visualisation of the data streams.

prototyping new machine: the Scan Table

Photo: blackhole-factory

We are prototyping a new machine. The Scan Table is a computer controlled ‘turntable’ equipped with a Fire-I cam + a USB-microscope. A stepper motor is controlled by a max patch using an arduino board and a stepper driver to scan small objects. The images are live processed by a jitter patch and projected. The same objects are also used to create live processed sound by a max/msp patch. All three patches (for motor control, video and sound are exchanging control data and influencing each other creating an unstable situation.

The first public usage of this beast will be in the project ‘Die Situation ist unter Kontrolle’ at Kunstmühle this weekend Nov 4 + 5.

Some video from the machine at work will follow soon.

Photo: blackhole-factory

blackhole-factory / TIG: Disability Media Arts Residency

blackhole-factory in collaboration with Disability Arts Company TiG at Londonmet between 31st of May and 2nd of June 2011
www.theaterglashaus.de

Photo: blackhole-factory

0ver 4 days, a group of BA Performing Arts students will work alongside 10 performers of mixed abilities to re-vision a version of the Shakespeare project ‘Caliban’s Island’.
TiG/Blackhole Factory offer a unique approach to performance making which integrates interactive technology, subversive low-tech aesthetics, and a group of performers with diverse range of abilties to create cutting edge live art work. Blackhole Factory have worked internationally for the last 15 years, and we are proud to host their London stay this year, by involving a group of current students in a series of workshops and final showing of a devised piece of performance.
Please join us at one or more of the following events.

Tuesday May 31st
19.00 blackhole-factory work presentation

Wedn June 1
19.00 presentation of ‘SONG’
Film by David Bickerstaff and blackhole-factory talk about their work with TIG

Thursday June 2
19.00 TiG performs Shakespeare media-arts event ‘Caliban’s Island’
in collaboration with Performing Arts students of Londonmet

The showings will be held in our Studio TM205 in
Tower Main Building 166-220 Holloway Road N7 8DB • London UK

Friday June 3
blackhole-factory workshop, Performance Innovations Summer Intensive

Binaural Ogunator

Binaural Ogunator

The Binaural Ogunator is part of the project Erzulies Traum.

The Binaural Ogunator is a kinetic sound sculpture using silk, computer controlled motors and 2-channel sound system. Two triads of sinusoidal signals are slowly changing frequencies against each other (binaural beats) to create a permanent shift from deep drones to a fast 6/8 rhythm and back.
The sound is synchronized with 3 computer controlled motors moving flags of red and black silk.

video

photos

The sound of the Binaural Ogunator is composed using a phenomenon known as binaural beats: two sinusoidal signals with slightly different frequencies produce a low frequency pulsation dependent on the difference of the two tones. Normally you get the best effect by listening to it with headphones, each signal in one ear. For the Ogunator we used a 2 channel sound system so people can move around in the room.

We used a custom max/MSP patch to create 3 sinusoidal signals at each channel. The tuning of the signals of one channel constantly changes over a period of 11 minutes to create a shift from deep drones to a fast 6/8 rhythm and back.

Wandering around in the installation the listener is constantly changing the mix of the resulting pulsations because of his position to the speakers and reflections in the room. The accentuation of the pattern is changing and shows the ambiguity of the 6/8 rhythm.

Tuning of the sinusoidals to get the binaural beats of the Ogunator:

For a short moment when both channels are in tune (state A) there is no puls. As soon as channel 2 starts changing frequencies a slow pulse developes, speeding up over 10 min time until state B.  Because of the different shifts of the 3 sinusoidals there is a resulting rhythm which is the basic pattern of african 6/8 rhythms and also the rhythm played in the ritual we visited. In state B the rhythm reaches the tempo of the drumming in the ritual.

motor control:

For spinning the flags we use motors for car windscreen wipers, controlled by a custom software written in max. The software is talking to an Arduino board to change direction and speed of the motors using pwm signals, then send to two RN-VN2 modules.

The motors have 6 different states of movements dependent on the tempo of the music:

1. don’t move
2. shaking
3. slow movements (5 possibilities differing in acceleration and speed)
4. rapid movements (5 possibilities differing in acceleration and speed)
5. spinning
6. slow down

There is no abrupt transition from one state to another but a continuous shifting of probabilities to choose a certain state. This probability shift is the same for all three motors, but the decisions what to do is choosen seperatly for each motor.

So the flags behave in a related way but seem to have their own plan, moving sometimes alone, unisono or in call and response style.

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