Sexy Computer Nerd: Rucyl Mills’ Wearable, Over-the-Shoulder MIDI Controller

It’s not animal-friendly, constructed of black leather and snakeskin, but it is fashion-forward. It’s Rucyl Mills’ over-the-shoulder, wearable MIDI controller, complete with pads, knobs and faders (looking mysteriously like they were liberated from an M-Audio Trigger Finger). Rucyl describes her creation: I built the elektro-07 so I could control the sonic and visual parameters of my live performances without having to look deep into the eye of my laptop, hunched over in computer music stance. I’m still learning how to play it.. Software wise, it runs a maxMSP/Jitter patch smoothly, connected to my laptop by a long usb cable. Major …

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Wrist Synths: Whisper-Quiet Wearable Wristband FM; Solar-Powered Beats

Tired of all those DIY electronics projects making an awful racket? This one is whisper-quiet. You may have to turn up your volume to hear it at all. Project creator Andrew Benson (maker of many wonderful things for Cycling ’74) writes: I just finished sewing together an FM synthesizer that lives on a wristband and is controlled by a little brown button that serves as a knob and a pair of small pressure sensors made from conductive fabrics. The whole thing runs off of an attiny45 chip, which is a really cheap AVR microcontroller chip that I’ve programmed with some …

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Turntable Art: Turntables as Interactive Servers, Fashion

The ways in which people can reimagine the beloved turntable seems boundless. We’ve seen bass guitar turntables, computer scratching visualizations, turntable-controlled vibrating chaise longues, and turntables embedded in tree trunks as art installations. Still, there’s more: TurntablistPC is an ongoing art project coupling a vintage turntable with a vintage PC, creating a hybrid, record-playing server that can be controlled remotely by remote websites around the world. It’s the creation of artist Mogen Jacobsen, and it’s currently being exhibited as part of a show called Webscape at the Art Museum of West Sealand, Denmark. What? You’re not planning to pass through …

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Awesomeness of Daft Punk: A Meta-Roundup

Photo: André Felipe, capturing Daft Punk in Tronworld São Paulo. Daft Punk is on a mind-blowingly cool tour. Aside from, you know, being Daft Punk, they’ve assembled dazzling futuristic visuals, slick leather jumpsuits, and sophisticated, animated LED helmets. What? You want to tour with LED helmets, too? It’s easy, outlined in a PDF by the creators. I can make the steps even more brief: 1. Cast your face and make a bust of the face and clay models of all the parts. 2. Modify a motorcycle helmet for the electronics. 3. Design your own LED display and controller board. 4. …

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Thimbletron: TradeMark’s MIDI Thimbles Make Illegal Music

Cassette-tape DJ battles are just one of TradeMark G.’s retro, regressive, subversive musical creations. He also likes to put on glasses, a white lab coat, and interactive sewing thimble gloves, in order to produce illegal, copyright-crushing musical performances. Many of the techno-gimmicks seen here on CDM are one-offs and prototypes. The Evolution Control Committee, by contrast, has been producing “illegal art”, often with the aid of technology, for some 20 years. They’ve been “culture jamming”, dropping Napster bombs (remember Napster?), infamously attracting the ire of CBS, and dressing up as giant pairs of trousers and cans of Parmesan cheese ever …

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T-Shirt as Wearable Air Guitar Interface

Your stupid, low-tech t-shirts. All they do is sit there. You can’t even hook them into a computer and control instruments live. Pathetic. John Malloy points us to a project by Dr. Richard Helmer, an engineer from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) in Belment, Australia. By embedding “textile motion sensors” (using conductive fibers, basically, so the fabric becomes a big set of resistors), you can play a real air guitar: Air guitar T-shirt rocks for real [BBC News] It’s not rocket science… it’s rockin’ science [CSIRO Article; site is a little slow, probably because of BBC traffic!] …

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Wearable Sound Tech: Sonic Fabric, Sonic Dresses, NYC Dorkbot

There are many high-tech solutions to making fashion into a musical instrument, like embedding sound circuitry, sensors, and wireless transmitters. Designer Alyce Santaro has found a low-tech, but ingenious, solution: weaving a special textile out of recycled audio tape. Dresses, flags, and even messenger bags can suddenly incorporate audio materials. In 2003, Alyce built a special commission for John Fishman of Phish that allowed him to play rhythmic sound collages on the garment. (Shown at right; thanks, Alyce!) If you’re in NYC, you can check out Alyce’s work in person at the January 4 Dorkbot meeting at the Location One …

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Analog Jacket Synth and Other Circuit-Bendable Oddities from Baltimore

Tim’s back with another tip. Baltimore bender Peter Blasser has created oddities like the much-blogged worm-powered synth (using worms as connections for a circuit-bend patch bay; via Music thing) and bent wooden synth kits (also via MT). But that’s not all. Blasser, aka Ciato-Lonbarseee, has plenty of other strange creations: Many odd synths, many odd names: Blasser catalog I love the eerie sounds of the percussive analog jacket. There’s another whole page of wooden and electronic oddities, like the “bass in a picnic basket.” Some things can be explained. Some cannot, like these pages of instruments. Go explore and enjoy.

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Music with Force Feedback: Tremor Vibrating Sleeve

Régine at WWMNA points to Tremor, a “tactile music sleeve is a piece of clubwear that allows the user to ‘feel’ the music that is being played in the club.” Supposedly helpful to those with hearing difficulties. Hmm . . . not sure which club you’ve been going to, but one generally finds you can feel the music as vibrations without wearing any additional gear. And if you’re a regular, well, pretty much everyone winds up with hearing difficulties. There is one novelty: vibrations are split into bass, mid, and treble — I do like that idea. (Oh, and it …

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Interactive Musical Corset

Okay, bondage gear probably isn’t what designed Danielle Wilde had in mind when she created the stunningly gorgeous design of her Ange musical ribcage. The inspiration was “a woman whose back has been flayed, exposing the musculature and bone structure and creating the suggestion of wings.” But if this doesn’t suggest a future of (beautiful, of course) interactive bondage gear, I don’t know what does. Get your stage show ready, kids. Tara Creme’s sound design includes “breathy notes, a gong, rushing water, drums and an oboe,” reports Regine at we make money not art. Got an interactive audio wearable? Fabulous …

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