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Sound Spheres: A Design Study of the Articulacy of a Non-Contact Finger Tracking Virtual Musical Instrument

Hughes, Craig; Wermelinger, Michel and Holland, Simon (2011). Sound Spheres: A Design Study of the Articulacy of a Non-Contact Finger Tracking Virtual Musical Instrument. In: 8th Sound and Music Computing Conference, 6-9 July 2011, Padova, Italy.

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A key challenge in the design of Virtual Musical instruments (VMIs) is finding expressive, playable, learnable mappings from gesture to sound that progressively reward practice by performers. Designing such mappings can be particularly demanding in the case of non-contact musical instruments, where physical cues can be scarce. Unaided intuition works well for many instrument designers, but others may find design and evaluation heuristics useful when creating new VMIs. In this paper we gather existing criteria from the literature to assemble a simple set of design and evaluation heuristics that we dub articulacy. This paper presents a design case study in which an expressive non-contact finger-tracking VMI, Sound Spheres, is designed and evaluated with the support of the articulacy heuristics. The case study explores the extent to which articulacy usefully informs the design of a non-contact VMI, and we reflect on the usefulness or otherwise of heuristic approaches in this context.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item
Copyright Holders: 2011 Craig Hughes, 2011 The Open University
Keywords: T802C
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) > Computing and Communications
Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Centre for Research in Computing (CRC)
Health and Wellbeing PRA (Priority Research Area)
Related URLs:
Item ID: 28709
Depositing User: Michel Wermelinger
Date Deposited: 23 May 2011 09:51
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2017 10:45
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