The design process of SPACER started with the materials.
What instrument can we build from 10 speakers, 10 lasers and one arduino. We came up with this..
Once the “instrument” was built, chapter two started; How do we play on it? Is it possible to make a meaningful 15 minutes composition only using 10 slightly different click-sounds?
And how does the visual and audible elements interact?
We wanted to explore this, so we needed a quick and intuitive way to interact with all 10 outputs. For example set up a sequence, skip a beat, change speed, randomize etc.
The solution for this was to play a sinewave 5vpp from ableton into a digital input on the arduino. We then made the arduino count the miliseconds between the in-going waves (distinguish pitch) and map the different notes to turn on the respective digital output for each of the 10 speakers.
This made it possible to compose real time in a creative DAW environment with midi plugins to manipulate the notes, and then export the audiofile containing short squarewave notes to use as “code” for the arduino.
A cool benefit from this was that we could run the whole thing from a cheap mp3 player, playing the audiofile.