pcom final project boss battle
progress: week 1 —-> week 2 👾
Last last week, I built a simple cardboard prototype of my lego music sequencer idea.
I was having some existential ruminations about this idea…. is it interesting enough? unique enough? fun enough? is it even helpful to the world?
In the end, 6 weeks is a short amount of time. I finally decided to just go for it. I ended up getting some nice feedback from a lot of folks.
I got some great feedback from one of the residents, Davíd. (thank you!!)
- it would be conceptually stronger if you could stack the bricks. that’s one of the inherent strengths of the LEGO language
- the button interface almost seems like it could be a distraction. Or at least an add on. Save that for later
- think about the 2 axes. different musical instruments? different pitches?
- found sounds feel a bit more interesting that computer sounds
- should I even do LEGOs? should I consider making my own pieces for special extra functionality?
- what if I want to make this into a more open system? should I abandon the grid then?
for the purposes of testing, I made a simple cardboard box (a sandwich, if you will) with printed “lego” paper on top as an affordance.
There is a single row of LED’s which lights up across as a sort of time indicator.
For sound, I used the website “Patatap,” which is a lovely interactive soundkit. I pre-recorded loops and then looped over them in real-time when peeps added new bricks to the canvas.
I was really curious to know:
- what was people’s initial interaction with it?
- do they follow the grid… try to stack the LEGOs…
- what kind of sounds do people prefer?
- what did people assume the axes were for? do the LED’s get the point across?
Only one person really pursued stacking the LEGOs. I think my user group also knows too much by now of how this would work. (“Oh, p5.js feed with computer vision component, using a bottom camera? of course!”)
Maybe since they’re aware of technical constraints, they’re less tempted to try it.
- try using a shift register instead of all these LEDs
- the horizontal plane is nice (as opposed to stacking vertically.)
- “[building] height might really limit what I can do, limit my musical expression. I’d feel like I’m losing something.”
- many people thought axes corresponded with pitch and volume
- most people understood that color mapped to sound quality, or instrument
- homemade, “found” sounds is more appealing with LEGO aesthetic
- people liked the idea of recording