Explanation of Variable Map (large
This map represents what inputs can be mapped, what internal variables
will be manipulated, and what outputs are to be expected. Note that
there is no linear one-to-one mapping, and that many variables can
influence many other variables down the line.
The purpose is to outline how the user has an indirect control
over what music is being created, and that the music will also influence
itself. The user's input only causes the first layer of things to
emerge, which causes a chain-reaction of events to occur, causing
music to be produced.
Organisms (agents) are created by user interaction with the tablet.
Each stroke, pressure, length are recorded. If a certain length
of time has passed, the strokes will produce one organism based
on the information saved. The physical traits and behavior of this
organism will be derived from that drawing information.
Visually, the organisms have several possible ways they can look.
Here are some ideas to explore
- organic slugs
- dragons/fantasty creatures
- abstracted forms
- CA cells (boring..)
The way they move are also based on the drawing information, primarily
the speed/tempo/curvature in which it is drawn. They will give the
organism characteristics that define them from others. Here are
some examples of how they could possibly move:
The purpose of these organisms are to create network
These structures, constructed and maintained by the
organisms, make sounds. The sound they make is dependent on what
organism made it, and how they modified/manipulated it. An organism
is able to change the pitch, volume, attack, and other qualities
of a crystal node. They can also activate it.
By activating a node, it will send a pulse to all
connected nodes. This acts like a neural network, causing other
nodes to fire, perhaps even making loops of firing nodes. Everytime
a node is activated (fired), it produces a sound that's defined
by the crystal (which is previously established by the organism).
This sound loop reaction is much like the music-toy
example, built in 2002.
Each node also has qualities that behave like a neural
network. For example, each node has polarity, as well as a set signal
strength, and a refractory period. These allow the nodes to interact
like a parallel computer, having AND
and XOR operators.
Visually, the nodes can look like any number of things,
but must hint at their connectiveness:
- abstract ball/stick diagrams (boring!)
Each sound played by a crystal node can be either generated (sine,
saw, and other operators), or by using an mp3 or wav sample. Audio
will be using the new Ess
Sound Library by Krister Olsson. The sounds can be manipulated
- pitch shift
- holding a note
- VSTi filters
For technical purposes, each sound might have to be registered
onto a timeline, and played in sequence to sound "on tempo".
This may or may not be implemented.
Since I don't want my software to simply be a beat-box device,
melodic elements are vital to making this project successful. Worst
comes to worst, this project becomes a beat-box device. Let's try
and avoid this!
Melody is described as pitch change over time, or a "successive
arrangement of sounds".
- A rhythmically organized sequence of single tones so related
to one another as to make up a particular phrase or idea.
- Structure with respect to the arrangement of single notes in
- The leading part or the air in a composition with accompaniment.
Melody will probably be established by a few rules. First and foremost,
a key must be chosen and followed. Second, a tempo should be set,
and subdivided accordingly.
A few rules will be written to prevent "unpleasant" exchanges
and or combinations notes to be played.
In essence, there will be a selection of unwanted pitches to be
removed. Organisms will probably be employed to remove them, or
These will be based on a few rules to disallow certain pitches
to be used due to the existence of current pitches already playing.
What might occur is that known keys will naturally emerge, like
C, or Dorian.
The tempo should emerge from the network causing the sounds to
be played. However, they should happen on a chosen, logical tempo
on Microstructures, Motifs, Themes, and Generative Melody
(this part obviously needs additional
work and research as project progresses)
When I mean orchestration, I mean the interaction
between the multiple melodic and rhythmic structures. As multiple
crystal networks are created, and sometimes seperated by distances,
a call and response effect could happen. This also allows for multiple
melodies and rhythms running alongside each other.