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Sense Stage Workshop

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Introduction

The SenseStage workshop is meant to bring together people from different dis-
ciplines (dance, theatre, sound, video, light) and cooperate in a collaborative
environment with interactive technologies. The workshop will take place in the
Hexagram BlackBox, a special, configurable room equipped with a full set of
theatre lights. Furthermore a multichannel sound setup and video equipment
will be available. Last but not least, a set of sensor devices with sensors will be
available for use during this workshop.

This blog is documenting the workshop process.

Boards and sensors for the arctic

July 27th, 2009

Documentation of the connections from the board to the sensors.
Click on each photo for more detailed info.

One of the boards looks slightly different, as it was the prototype board for the final board layout.
It hooks up to the SparkFun Rh/T sensor, and the gas sensor has a 4pin hookup, instead of 3pins.

complete board with sensors, battery and antenna attached

complete board with sensors, battery and antenna attached

Closeup of the whole board running

Closeup of the whole board running

The whole board without connections

The whole board without connections.
Bottom to top:
2 pins: GND and 3.3 V on the MiniBee (left to right)
11 pin header: GND, RAW and analog pins on MiniBee (left to right)
2 pins: GND, RAW - battery connections (left to right)
Left 3 pins: D13, D11, D12 (bottom to top)
Left 4 pins: connections to Rh/T, (DATA, GND, Vcc, Clock) (top to bottom)
Mid 3 pins: connections to Gas sensor, (GND, Vcc, input) (left to right)
Right 6 pins: connections to accelerometer (CS (=Vcc), MISO (=GND), MOSI (=SDA), SCL, GND, Vcc) (bottom to top)

Connection to the gas sensor

Connection to the gas sensor. Black marked wire should be on the right.

Connection to the Parallax Rh/T sensor

Connection to the Parallax Rh/T sensor.
Connection of the 4 pin connector.
Left to right:
Ground, Clock, not connected, Data

Connection to the Parallax Rh/T sensor

Connection to the Parallax Rh/T sensor.
Connection of the 4 pin connector.
Left to right:
Data, not connected, Clock, Ground

Another closeup of the connection to the Parallax Rh/T sensor

Another closeup of the connection to the Parallax Rh/T sensor

Closeup of the connection on the other side of the Parallax Rh/T sensor

Closeup of the connection on the other side of the Parallax Rh/T sensor.
Single pin connection (Vcc) on the left pin.
Should be opposite of the Data pin on the other side.

Connection of the<br />
accelerometer

Connection of the accelerometer.
Vcc (black line on board) to the black lined cable.
On the board, the cable is the furthest away from the MiniBee connections.

Overview of the alternative board (prototype)

Overview of the alternative board (prototype)

Connections to the digital pins of the other type board (original prototype)

Connections to the digital pins of the other type board (original prototype)

Author: marije : Categories: Projects, Sensors : Tags:

Treasure Islands

June 1st, 2009

Treasure Islands from Matti Niinimäki on Vimeo.

Treasure Islands is an interactive performance/game created by Sarah Albu, Matti Niinimäki and Matt Waddell.
Video by Brett Bergmann, Marije Baalman, edited by Matti Niinimaki.

Author: Matti : Categories: Projects : Tags:

Wireless lights

May 20th, 2009

Two groups showed an interest in controlling some lights within objects or on the floor…

so one of these groups I gave the electro-lumeniscent wires, which can be controlled wirelessly with the technology I developed for Schwelle II originally.
A report of that work can be found here, a blog I had completely forgotten about, until just recently I came a across it when looking through old bookmarks… and then today I remembered to look at it to figure out how to use the MOSFET, that I needed to help out on the other project, to control a bunch of LEDs with one of the sensor nodes.
This I got working by using the same serial protocol as used for the matrix of lights in Chronotopia. We’ll have to test out how this protocol performs when all the sensor nodes are sending data, in case they might by chance create a valid control message, but it should be quite solid, I think…

Impossible Storyboard

May 20th, 2009

After a nice long day of testing and conceptualizing, we have come up with a tentative skeleton in the form of a sketchy storyboard (unfortunately without illustrations at the present) for the interplay between sound, light, interaction and general feel of the Impossible Room based on key moments of performing the room.

The IR upon entering
Sound: Droneish, less high-end - distant thunder, resonating - occasional “almost voice”-outbursts
Light: ambient + stable; cool colors, dark feel - one light stable, another with a bit of a throb - and a kind of spotlight pointing to a place in the room - the light “breathes” - feels alive
Interaction: You walk in - you look around
Feel: Spooky - strangely attractive - throbbing; human and machinic at the same time

Add fog. The object will be in the spotlight.

The IR when a person activates it
Sound: The room awakens; higher frequencies; volume rises - scream
Light: light starts flickering - faster rhythm - “almost scream”-kind of “almost-voice”
Interaction: the person has moved to the position of the spotlight and has grabbed the object - ACTION >> sound + visual cues appear attracting the person to activate the various sensors (in the form of fluorescent light on the floor + walls and pulsating LEDs on the object)
Feel: You have awoken a dormant giant demanding that you take action

The general feel of the interaction in the IR (4 levels of interaction, to be described tomorrow)
Sound: panning, directing attention to the zones of interaction, while immediately moving away from the person >> less panning - more stable sound
Light: ambient light + a lot of lighting cues; on the floor, on the wall, on the object
Interaction: the person seeks to follow the cues in the room; a rise in activity >> an appeasement of the room
Feel: the general feel is one of over-cuing, over-stimulation, over-activation; the person is forced to increase intense movements

General + specific kinds of movement - impossible movements
Gameplay; counter - when an action has been triggered, you add to a counter - progression from level to level
We can assign different outputs/expressions to the different objects; floor = drone, object = bird-singing, IR = lights - you can perform one aspect of the room

The IR has been performed
Sound: Natural sounds, birds singing, ambient and less aggressive drone-element
Light: stable, pulsing, mellow, warm colors
Interaction: the active, somewhat random movements continue happening >> more of a pattern - at a given time the blinking of the lights seems to stop, and you are directed towards placing the object at a given position
Feel: in the beginning dissonantic (active vs soothing room), becoming more and more relaxing and soothing - the feeling of accomplishment

How long does the room stay in this position - how does it return to its “dormant” state?

Author: JonasFritsch : Categories: Progress, Projects : Tags:

New version of Digital Orchestra mapping tools

May 20th, 2009

I’ve released an updated version of the Digital Orchestra mapping tools, which fixes a bug when trying to save. Download it here:

http://www.idmil.org/software/mappingtools

Author: Joe Malloch : Categories: Resources : Tags: ,

The Impossible Room (2 x Nick, Christoph and Jonas)

May 19th, 2009

Project Description

When you first enter the Impossible Room, it doesn’t really feel right. You enter a room which is dark, filled with smoke and distorted sounds, and with a spotlight, that attracts you amidst the unfriendliness of the whole setup - the room isn’t that happy to see you, but welcomes you in to a fight. Upon entering the spotlight, the room changes character. The soundscape thickens and fills with unrecognizable drone-like distortions. On the floor, LEDs start glowing, providing clues and inviting you to enter a world of impossible movements. An object in the room also demands attention, calls to be touched, shaken and displaced, with no particular goal in mind. The walls invite you to interact with them. Although it seems impossible to simultaneously fulfill all the interactional needs of the room, attempting to do so has an effect on the environment. The more agitated you get, the more you work to fulfill the needs of the room, the more active you become - the more soothing and appeased appears the room. The distorted sounds take recognizable form and remind you of nature at peace, the lights change from unclear and dark colors, to appealing, bright ones. Awkwardly, it seems that your activity calms the environment, and changes it from hostile to friendly - while you yourself work to your limits to appease this impossible space. Reaching an equilibrium, the room settles for a while, only to return to its hostile state, if nothing is done to keep it calm. New choreographies are demanded from the visitor or performer to yet again “take control” of the room creating ever-changing interactional parameters to be pursued and played with.

The Impossible Room is open to anyone, who dares enter it; the outcomes of the interaction and the length of the process of appeasement will vary from person to person, and also be based on the number of people in the room. Once a day, the room is thoroughly activated by a skilled performer, playing it like an instrument.

Conceptual Underpinnings

The concept behind the Impossible Room takes as a starting point, that technologies can be visible and change the way we perceive different spaces in a remarkable, and less ambient way. The concept seeks to explore the specific technicities of a range of sensor technologies - floor sensors for extensive, horizontal space, accelerometers for intense movements, IR-tracking for vertical displacements - using the various technologies as well as the designed soundscape and lighting to consciously affect the perception of physical and digital space. Inviting people to take part in forming a mixed and relational aesthetics of the environment, the Impossible Room seeks to experiment with our perceptions of ourselves and the technologies that are becoming a part of our everyday lives by making the experience of the technologies felt in a tangible, disturbing and creative way.

Spatial Setup

The installation will take place in one of the storage rooms in the Black Box.

Technological Requirements

Floor sensors - the three nodes we’ve been working with (124, 125, 126) - distributed on the floor in the room (horizontal extensive movement)
R/Ultrasound-sensors - two nodes during the setup - we’ll have to test which nodes will work best and how we (vertical extensive movement)
Accelerometer - one or two attached to objects in the room (intensive movement)
Free LED-agents - providing cues on the floor
Lighting - six lamps on poles distributed in the room, assigned to a node with six slots on the nework
Sound - two speakers on poles in each end of the room
Smoke machine - yes indeed!

Author: JonasFritsch : Categories: Progress, Projects : Tags:

Project Description (Shereen, Yolaine, Aaron, Daniel)

May 19th, 2009

Feeling components

In an intimate space defined by light and sound, there is a naturalness to what is happening. One is both an observer and a participant in the action taking place. We are attempting to develop an evolving “spiritual” atmosphere.

The general idea

A movable “intimate light box” follows a participant across the floor and “incorporates” each new participant (up to four participants at a time) with a simultaneous release of visible and audible “energy”. Video projection of water (Shereen) and sounds of water and wind (Yolaine) accompany this “voyage” around the exhibition space (quadrant below the movement detection camera). Abstract modulations of sound (Aaron’s drones) enliven and describe movement in the projection space. The camera’s detection algorithm is developed to enhance the overall effect of the participants’ experience (Morgan and Daniel) through an interactive relationship with the projection on the floor (or wall, or smoke screen, or ?).
Audio effects generated by data from other sensors in the Black Box space may be used to create a sense of pattern and “ambiance”.

Interactive stages of the “piece”

When no one in the space: homeostasis, sound happening, general lighting atmosphere.
When one person enters the space: a “light box” suddenly surrounds the participant, video projection, sound modifications.
When two people occupy the space: a second light box appears, video projection evolves, sound modifications.
When three people occupy the space: a third light box appears, video projection evolves, sound modifications.
If two or more people come into contact there is a “flash” of released energy which is subsequently reabsorbed.

Technical Elements

Motion tracking from top mounted video camera
Video projection from top mounted projector
Quadraphonic audio
Smoke screen (vapor cloud)

Input Sources

Floor Sensors (someone is watching the activity in the piece and “dancing” in accompaniment in another quadrant)
4 nodes
32 slots (4 nodes x 8 slots each)
Range scaled to 0-255

Video Tracking
1 node
2 slots (X/Y position)

External Data selected from different Nodes and Slots in the Black Box space (pendulum, accelerometers, etc.)

Author: daniel : Categories: Progress, Projects : Tags:

Andreia Oliveira

May 19th, 2009

I’m PhD student from Brazil and I’m studying with Prof. Brian Massumi - UdM in Montreal. Also, I’m looking for a place to develop a video installation project as part of my theses. The video installation will examine what a body-in-motion is capable of within a digital environment and establish relations between the gestures of the engraver causing and the movements/gestures of the spectator interacting. The video installation will be an interactive artwork that acknowledges.

Andreia Oliveira - BFA, UFGRS (Brazil); MA in Social Psychology, UFRGS; presently enrolled in a Multidisciplinary Ph.D. Program at UFRGS and at the Université de Montréal (Canada). She is a recipient of a prestigious scholarship (2007-2008) from the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development – CNPQ. Her academic interest focuses on applications of digital technology and she has researched extensively the relationship between technicity, landscape and body in media art. Her expertise lies in the study of art and technology, as well as contemporary philosophy with special emphasis on subjectivity. Since 1992, her art practice is concerned with drawing and printing; she has participated in several collective exhibitions and one-person shows. Currently, her research–creation makes free use of electronic and digital technologies such as audio-visual projection.

Contact: andreiaoliveira.br@gmail.com

Author: Andreia : Categories: Participants : Tags:

Navid Navab

May 19th, 2009

Navid is a Montreal based media-alchemist, sound-artist, composer, and audio programmer. Navid studied music performance and composition for many years and is pursuing Electroacoustics and Computational Arts at Concordia University as well as Music Technology at McGill University. Currently he works as a sound designer and researcher at Topological Media Lab and Matralab, while pursuing his studies and various collaborations.

Navid creates real-time clouds and crystals of sound, engaging responsive sound design with composition, improvisation, philosophy and theories of embodied cognition within various environments. Often in his practice, gestures, rhythms and vibrations from everyday life are mapped dynamically to sound generation processes, resulting in augmented acoustical-poetry. Most of Navid’s creations and investigations range from acousmatic compositions, to responsive architecture, interface design, gestural sound, philosophy, theater, and performance.

Related Skills: Max/MSP, physical computing and HCI, critical listening, composition, responsive environments and media choreography, sensing/mapping/signal-proccessing

Sound-specific interests/ongoing research: Stochastic Synthesis, Ambisonics and Spatializaion, Physical Modeling, Gestural Sound, Granulization, Analysis and Machine Listening

Author: navid : Categories: Participants : Tags: ,

Project Description: Island Adventure

May 18th, 2009

crude layout

crude layout

Adventure Islands

Description
Interactive gaming experience where participants travel around an animated ocean setting visiting and exploring theme islands. Each island has it’s own unique interactive visual and audio elements including animations and sounds that respond to movement.

Technical Elements
Motion tracking from top mounted video camera
Video projection from top mounted projector
Floor pressure sensors
IR LED
Quadraphonic audio

Input

Floor Sensor
4 nodes
32 slots (4 nodes x 8 slots each)
Range scaled to 0-255

Video Tracking
1 node
2 slots (X/Y position)

External Sensor Input

Author: matt : Categories: Progress, Projects : Tags: