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Kacper Ziemianin conceived of a pretty simple audio interface: a row of photoresistors arranged like a piano. However, it’s what he does with that interface that’s compelling. The 24 sensors are multiplexed and routed through an Arduino. The data is then interpreted by MAX/MSP.

lightefface

In MAX, Kacper manipulates the data in some novel ways. The instrument can be used simply as a touch controller; when the user covers a photoresistor with his/her finger, a note is played. Then he gets into some aleatory sound with a marble rolling around the surface of the controller. Finally, he flips the light reaction in MAX, making it play notes when light is detected. Now he’s able to control the sound using a variety of light sources such as a lamp and an illuminated cellphone.

We see a lot of sensor-based instruments come our way, but the Lightefface is notable for its expressive capability. Kacper has plans to start production of these. You can surely sign me up for one.

Michael Colombo

In addition to being an online editor for MAKE Magazine, Michael Colombo works in fabrication, electronics, sound design, music production and performance (Yes. All that.) In the past he has also been a childrens’ educator and entertainer, and holds a Masters degree from NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program.


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