sonicSENSE resource links... the "what" and" where" of goods used for the project to date



Al Lashers Electronics Great Electronics store in Berkeley with an knowedgle and exceptional staff. They will help you with your projects rather then metting out the usual hazing.

Allied Electronics If your interested in making the heart monitor this is where we found the equivalant of the Orp 12.

Arduino Interface controllers used to actuate the speaker film and acquire sensor data.

Audio I/O We are using the Motu 8pre Firewire and the Motu 828 mk3 for audio input and output. To capture the sound of the drips we use the 8pre. The 828 is used to output to the icicle nodes. This may seem like overkill since contact mics and severely attenuated speakers don't fully maximize the Motu's capabilities. When purchasing these we decided that we wanted to maintain flexibility in the design of the sound platform for future iterations. As the maxmim goes its better to start off with too much then too little.

Educational Innovations Source for Ferro Fluid used to visualize the action of the heart monitor inconjunction with the data projector in the water room.

Bowlin Equipment in Berkeley is a great source for metric and exotic fasteners.

Boss Robot Hobby This is a convenient source for hobby servos the East Bay. If they don't have something you want they can order it and have it there the next day.

Electronics Plus Anothergood electronics store in San Rafael. We found the tranformers needed for the speaker film there.

Heart Monitor Schematic We ended up just building the heart monitor section and connecting it the Make Controller. We used the 5 volt supply from the board. Make sure you use a highly regulated power supply to power the Make board.

The heart monitor is one of the many elements that mines data in sonicSENSE. In this case its bio-data orginating from the viewers rather then the internet. We did this so we could interweave realtime vital signs with data that is distant and abstract. In V1.the beat it detects is used as percussion. The sound of it can be heard throughout the entire installation. In other rooms it is perceived as muted sycopation. In the liquid room it is almost overwhelming reminder of personalized mortality. We also wanted to visualize each heart beat but wanted to acheive this sculpturally rather then digitally. We decided to use Ferro Fluid and a rare earth magnet mounted on a piston. The ferro fluid is modulated and shaped by the magnet as it is oscillated by the solenoids.

HSC Halted Electronics Yet another gem in the Bay Area for electronic supplies. They traffic in surplus and new components. The solenoids and used in the ferrofluiud sculpture were found here.

K&J Magnectics Source for Rare Earth Magnets activates the ferro fluid.

MakingThings Interface controllers used to actuate the speaker film and acquire sensor data.

Max/MSP/Jitter Authoring Application used to program the installation

Mac Mini So far these computers have worked great. They were especially easy to integrate into the installation. In other words they don't have an overwhelming presense.

Measurement Specialties We used the speaker film for a number of reasons. Two of them pertain to this project. One, because it only outputs high frequencies. Two, because of it's materiality and pliability as sculptural skin, especially its reflective properties.

MIDI music files Midi files are used to choreograph the motion of the sound nodes in the Icicle Room. We are using MSP's detonate object to "play" the midi files. Each note is triggered, one by one, by the sound of the drips. Contact mics are affixed to the bottom of the paint cans which are connected to the audio inputs of the Motu. A simple MSP patch tests for a threshold. When exceeded triggers are sent to the detonate object. The midi notes are then processed in several ways. They are scaled and sent to servo motors on the icicles tranmuting pitch to kinectic distance. The note values are also sent to a MSP object that converts them to frequency values. These are sent to a tone generator to create crunchy, fuzzy beeps and pops. The duration data in the midi files is ignored. Each note lasts 30 milliseconds or less. This to emulate urban soundscapes where ring tones, activting car alarms, and assorted chirps of personal electronics interupt and punctuate cognition.

If the drips are close together one can almost recognize the song, but that is not the intent. The idea is to use the inherent structure of the music to provide deterministic patterns within the movemnent of the nodes rather then producing random gestures. The idea of using driping water was inspired by Fluxus performances. We wanted the timing and rhythm of the nodes to be caused by a physical phenonama rather then digital techniques. The digital in this case correlating with precision beats and measures found in most forms of music.

Processing Authoring Application used to program the sonicSENSE index page. In the not so distant future it will be used as a web interface to the installation.

ServoCity Pan and Tilt hobby servo motors and mechanisms that acuate the sound nodes. They also have a good selection of gears, and small mechanical parts. They also make linear actuators that we can't wait to get our hands on.

We mechanically animated the nodes to accentuate the speaker film's unique qualities. When we received the first sample we proceded to bend, cut, and mutilate the material exploring how the sound could be physically altered. A doppler effect could be created by bending and folding it into itself. Cutting it into interesting shapes seems to diffuse the source of the sound. These experiments led to the design of the sound nodes.

SparkFun Many Sensors were purchased here including the weather station used to control the blow room.

SuperCollider a real time audio synthesis programming language

Transducers This is a link to a Tactile Transducer Comparison site. We are using the Rolen Star Audio Transducers to emit sound that can be felt but not heard. We also purchased the ButtKickers but they and the power amp were too heavy to bring to the shows in the Czech Republic. They will be integrated in the project when the piece returns to California.

The intent behind using the speaker film and the transducers was to create sound nodes that excludes almost the entire range of audible frequecies delineating an aural penumbra. By isolating these frequencies the sounds become tangible with the transducers and more visual with the speaker film. Thereby amplfying the meaning of the title for this project, sonicSENSE.

Wind Data Stations Site that is parsed extracting wind speed and direction. This data drives the movement of the sound nodes in the vapor room.

Hardware was purchased at Orchard Supply in Berkeley, Pastime Ace Hardware and Tap Plastics in El Cerrito.

Fuel in the Hood: Rudy's Can't Fail Cafe . Lanesplitters . Brown Suger Kitchen . Ratto's