The HPSTR Pyramid is an attempt to create an alternative — but native to digital world — interface, to conventional knobs and slide controls. It’s an approach to have the same basic and generic functionality a knob has but to achieve it with a more natural interaction.
The HPSTR Pyramid has no visible interface but is the interface itself. The tetrahedron is played by pressing or tapping its sides and by altering the spatial orientation.
For somebody who does not know what the instrument does and how it is operated it is nearly impossible to find out by only looking at it. But once the pyramid is played or seen in action the functionality becomes very obvious.
You can recreate the Pyramid electronics with the data on our Website.
The HPSTR pyramid was developed by Flavio Gortana within the scope of the “Musical Interfaces” class 2012/13 at FH Potsdam.
What does fashion lack? “Microcontrollers” – this states dutch fashiontech designer Anouk Wipprecht on her website. And if you have a look at her portfolio, you will most certainly agree.
Intimacy for example is the name of a dress which thanks to smart e-foils becomes transparent based on personal interactions.
Another one is the Pseudomorphs dress: At first an innocent white, it soon becomes unique and quite colorful, when ink trickles out of diverted medical equipment and tubes to find its way down the dress, creating a new pattern every time.
How can you make music visible? Jihye Kang and Victor Gonzalez explored this question and developed the Melodic Scribe, which drops paint on porcelain plates according to the melodies and notes of the music played.
Every platte pattern is unique like the music is with every different musician.
In 2012 alone Singapore had to face over 2100 cases of drunk driving, some with disastrous endings. The club Zouk engaged an agency to keep their guests from driving when they definitely should not drive anything anymore by themselves and they managed to come up with a fun way to do so: the Pee Analyser.
Former parking cards were replaced with RFID cards. As soon as the drivers used the toilet the cards got activated through a urinal testing device that measures the alcohol level in the urine. If they were hammered, they got the strong recommendation to take a taxi or could even use the clubs’ drive home service.
We have heard a lot about synthetic 3D printers for home use – now we are entering the home use metal age! A US startup wants to make metal printing available at a small cost and is presenting its project on Indiegogo, where you can get the MiniMetalMaker already from 500 $ on.
The MiniMetalMaker prints 3D objects from digital files in metal clay, such as copper, bronze, steel, silver and gold but also ceramic and porcelain clays.
For now, the printable size is still quite small compared to the synthetic 3D printers: the object can have a size of max 6 cm x 6 cm x 6 cm. The extrusion trace is around 0.5mm. Nevertheless the team around founder David Hartkop states on their Indiegogo project page that with the monies raised this will be improved. This shouldn’t be a problem now as their campaign has currently raised already more than 15.000 $, which has been 1.5x their actual goal.
We thought we should delight our readers a little by showing some dainties of creative electronics. Yummy.
This week we want to start with the awesome Little Black Midi.
The Little Black Midi is a dress for singers and instrumentalists performing on stage. Equipped with copper plates, it will activate midi samples being played when the singer touches the plates with his/her copper ring. The dress enables the musician to combine singing, making music as well as dancing while being on stage.
The Little Black Midi was developed by Naomi Knopf while doing a class on musical interfaces held by Stefan Hermann in 2012/13 at the FH Potsdam.
Here you can see her performing a song with the dress:
The dress was realized with the Arduino software, a teensy, the Ableton programme and a lot of patience and trial and error. Congratulations on the dress, Naomi!
Today, we got a visitor in the Fritzing Lab: Our neighbour, Charles Oleg, came by to show us his new creation. Charles is working on a project to bring more light into his flat by using a rotating mirror system.
This system includes, besides two mirrors to reflect the sunlight, also some planetary gears driven by a 1 to 10 Watt motor. The system knows its position via GPS signal as well as the current position of the sun and can move accordingly.
Charles showed us two of his planetary gear prototypes: one was laser-cutted and one was 3D-printed out of PLA.
He told us that those kinds of systems that track the position of the sun and move corresponding to it to receive as much sunlight as possible are currently used in solar parks as well as in telescopes. These are large projects with huge gear-wheels, whereas Charles aims at making his lighting system affordable and open source – so that everybody can use it.
Charles scripted the gear-wheels in python and has uploaded it on GitHub. So if you want to build your own solar light system, check out his blog or his GitHub folder.
Reichelt elektronik is one of the largest electronic distributors in Europe. A big plus is that you can order from Reichelt also in very small quantities without any disadvantage concerning the price – it will stay the same per item, whether you buy one or hundred.
Fritzing at the MakeTechX conference 2013 – for the first time Fritzing had a booth at the „conference of tech things that matter, where those who make a difference meet, think & create.“ What a nice slogan, and nice it was indeed.
For me it was the first conference I could attend with Fritzing and so I was superexcited and curious what would await us there. We met in the morning at our „headquarters“ to pack some last things and finally hailed a taxi at 9 a.m. to drive to the Platoon Kunsthalle in Berlin Mitte where the conference would take place. This was already a great start to the day, our taxi driver seemed to like entertaining his passengers and gave us a lot of secret insights into the Berlin taxi business and we will definitely follow his advice to not only try Red Bull with vodka but also with cherry brandy.
The Platoon Kunsthalle is a very interesting building – actually it is more like a huge and fancy cargo container, created as an experimental space for artists and therefore perfectly fitting the location just next to the White Trash.
The interior felt surprisingly comfortable, the front part consisted of the – definitely necessary to mention – gorgeous café-restaurant-sort of thing with a nice sitting area and the larger back served as presentation and workshop area. There were several booths, and we had one of them! Besides us there was also the Open Tech School, Bitcoin, the Fab Lab, who brought us there initially by ordering some very special Fritzing Kits in a metal case to do an Arduino workshop, and many more, including and not forgetting a whole lot of 3D printers and a transformable mountain/racing/citybike! Awesome!
So, as you can guess, maker mood was in the air! Stefan and I prepared the booth with six Fritzing kits as we had prepared a little workshop to make the visitors familiar with Arduino and Fritzing. Soon after the first conference attendees arrived and the speakers started their talks – we then asked ourselves how we should do a workshop while being placed almost on the stage ourselves? Luckily the organisers Lizzy and René Herzer had thought of everything and used a concept I hadn’t experienced before – they handed out headphones to the audience and so everybody could listen undisturbed and to their own volume. Though I couldn’t listen to the talks anymore at least we now had some peace and quiet to do the workshops (besides that it is really awesome to go to the toilet and still being able to listen to the speaker on the stage…).
At first I was a bit nervous in assisting in the workshops without being a real Fritzing crack yet, but in the end it wasn’t necessary at all. Stefan took over the harder-to-explain bits wonderfully and I learned a lot myself by explaining how it all works. We had a very interesting mixture of workshop participants – some knew the Kits very well already and, after solving our tasks in a mere minute, grabbed our Fritzing book eagerly and started contentedly getting lost in the more complex exercises. What made me very happy was that there were also a lot of people who never came in contact with an Arduino before and discovered how easy and fun it actually can be while saying before „No, no, this is really not my strength, I could never do it in physics lessons.“
So we left in the afternoon to go back to work, armed with tasty bread rolls and a very good mood, with the feeling of not only us but many more people having had a very interesting and enjoyable Fritzing day.