Satellite Synth [In Progress]

13Aug10


//maximize images for clarity!

Images of musical interface based on phasing patterns. Front-end visuals built in Processing, with sound synthesis currently being designed in Pure Data. Source code and demos will follow shortly.

“Satellites” are added to a screen by a user, who also specifies a sonic frequency (indicated by colour) associated with that satellite, and a radius at which it will orbit. As multiple satellites move along their trajectory at self-set speeds, they pass over the other satellites on the same radius. When a collision happens, the two frequencies of the colliding satellites are sent to Pure Data (via OSC) and trigger a sound. Different radii trigger different types of sounds in order to provide a more complex musical texture.

The idea behind the piece is to examine the use of “phasing systems” and indeterminacy in composition with the creation of a simple musical interface. A phasing system is when two musical figures are operating at different speeds or lengths, causing them to run out of sync with each other – the result is generally a deterministic yet not entirely predictable method of generating music. As the satellites in this piece are traveling at seperate speeds to each other, they constantly create new rhythms and melodies in their interactions.

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