Vodhrán: collaborative design for evolving a physical model and interface into a proto-instrument

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This paper reports on the process of developing a virtual-acoustic proto-instrument, Vodhran, based on a physical model of a plate, within a musical performance-driven ecosysytemic environment. Performers explore the plate model via tactile interaction through a Sensel Morph interface, chosen to allow damping and localised striking consistent with playing hand percussion. Through an iteration of prototypes, we have designed a standalone proto-instrument that allows a bodily interaction between the performer and the virtual-acoustic plate in a way that redirects from the perception of the Sensel as
a touchpad and reframes it as a percussive surface. Due to the computational effort required to run such a rich physical model and the necessity to provide a natural interaction, the audio processing is implemented on a high powered single board computer embedded within the object itself. We describe the design challenges and technological solutions we found during the implementation of the Vodhran.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2020 International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression, Birmingham City University
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - 2020


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