Two researchers of Responsive Environments, MIT Media Lab, have put to in combination a tool this is an wonderful array of musical tools squeezed into one versatile package deal. Made the use of seven layers of materials with other electric houses, the end result can also be performed the use of contact, proximity, drive, stretch, or with combos of them. The usage of a fabric-based keyboard, ribbon-controller, and trackpad, it may be performed as a one-octave keyboard, a theremin, and in ways in which haven’t any phrases, corresponding to stretching whilst urgent keys. It may also be folded up and filled right into a case in conjunction with your pc, and care has even been taken to make it cleanable.
Layer one, the highest layer, is a conductive cloth for detecting proximity and contact. The twelve keys can paintings independently with a MPR121 proximity contact controller or the controller can deal with all of them as one, extending the space the hand can also be and feature it nonetheless paintings. Layer two is only a knit cloth however layers three to six locate drive, consisting to two conductive layers with a mesh cloth and a piezo-resistive cloth in between. The piezo-resistive cloth is LTT-SPLA from eeonyx, a knit cloth covered with the conductive polymer, polypyrrole (PPy). Layer seven is composed of two strips of knitted spandex cloth, additionally covered with PPy, and detects stretching. Two strips of this are sewn at the backside, one horizontal and one vertical. You’ll be able to see and listen to the superb sound this all produces within the video under.
The lengthy cloth ribbon-controller is a snap-on addition that permits sliding of a finger alongside its duration. It is composed of a resistive cloth on most sensible of a non-conductive mesh which is on most sensible of a conductive cloth. Urgent the resistive cloth reasons it to make touch throughout the mesh with the conductive cloth beneath. Voltage is implemented to one finish of the resistive cloth and the finger place adjustments the resistance between that finish and the conductive cloth. It’s the similar trick regularly used with traces of graphite pencil marks on paper as on this instance with a 555 timer circuit.
The trackpad is applied as a resistive trackpad the use of a 4-wire configuration. We’ve already lined how a 4-wire configuration works in every other article. Relating to the materials, two resistive materials have been used for most sensible and backside with a non-conductive mesh layer sandwiched in between. Conductive threads have been sewn into reverse ends of the resistive materials.
Along with contact, a hand above the trackpad can toy with an electrical box to vary sound parameters whilst the opposite hand presses the keys. An illustration of that is within the video.
Two circuit forums have been fabricated, one referred to as FabricKeys and the opposite ThereminKeys. More concerning the team’s experimenting is of their paper, however they settled on a ribbon connector and an AdaFruit Feather M0 for the hub. They chose MIDI because the protocol for speaking with the pc.
Filed underneath: musical hacks