Séminaire n°17

Active haptic force-feedback for musical interaction

Intervenant :  Edgar Berdhal

Contact : http://ccrma.stanford.edu/~eberdahl 

Date : 13/09/10

Since the 1960's at the latest, the computer has been capable of digitally synthesizing any perceivable sound. However, in a live context, human-computer interfaces limit the quality of the interaction between the performer and the sound synthesizer. This talk focuses on force-feedback interfaces for music, which operate using knowledge from robotics to seamlessly and intimately connect musicians with sound synthesizers. After introducing virtual musical instruments, we discuss how to design interfaces that assist a performer in making musical gestures. For example, the haptic drum provides a performer's drumstick with an extra push every time that the performer strikes the drum. This device allows the performer to make gestures that would otherwise be very difficult or impossible, such as arbitrarily long one-handed drum rolls and arbitrarily complex rudiments. Next, we explain how to assist a performer in accurately selecting pitches from a continuous range on a Theremin-like haptic interface. Finally, we relate this work to instruments with augmented acoustics and contextualize it in the framework of virtual and augmented reality. Edgar Berdahl is a lecturer in the Music Department at Stanford University in California, USA. Prior to receiving his PhD from Stanford, Berdahl earned a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at UC Berkeley. His research interests include robotics, physical modeling, human-computer interaction, signal processing, and sound synthesis. He wants to enhance "digital" musical interactions so that they "seem more analog."