Hey everyone! Welcome to Synapse’s blog. We’ve got 8 weeks worth of material to hit you with, so bear with us!
A quick summary for the tl;dr among you: we’re a group of seven New Media (five Design & Imaging and two Interactive Development) seniors at Rochester Institute of Technology, and this is the progress blog for our team project, which basically functions as a capstone for our four years of education here at RIT. We have twenty weeks to create the project, and we’re in the middle of week eight. While the project is due in February, we’ll be presenting to the public in May at Imagine RIT.
Week one they put us together and basically said “okay, GO.” We pretty quickly agreed that we wanted to create something interactive and immersive and that we wanted to try using the Kinect to do it. This spawned brainstorming on a MASSIVE level, and we narrowed down to two ideas: an interactive three-dimensional world, or an immersive music generator and visualizer. We opted for the second idea.
The idea is that people will be able to interact with a grid of notes to create music, using both gestures and static blocks which we’ll build, which will be read by the Kinect. Theo put together a sketch of the basics:
We brainstormed some user interfaces:
And we put together some mood boards:
We’ve gotten some great feedback so far. Namely, our professor Adam suggested that we gear the project more towards our target persona, an 18-25-year-old engineering major, and add some hidden levels of functionality so that our project can be satisfying to engineering minds but still be simple enough for kids to play with, too. Matt put together this mockup of our interface idea as it currently stands:
The center “sun” has our bass notes, which will be determined with solid blocks placed within the circle. The middle rings are the middle notes, and the notes will be determined by projected “blobs” along the rings, which the user will be able to control with simple gestures. The outside particles will be our higher (“tinkly”) notes, and will interact with people just walking through the projection. Besides these projections on the floor, we’re also planning for a wall-projected visualizer to complete the immersive experience.
Currently, developers extraordinaire Matt and Mekan are putting together a Flash demo of how our project will work along with Brad, who’s working on the actual musical notes that our installation will produce. Theo, Emma, Bogdan, and I are working on some design mockups.
If you’ve made it this far, congratulations explorer! All our following posts will be a lot easier to digest. Unless, of course, you’re allergic to awesomeness.