While researching for last weeks Soundie DIY article I found the Textile Synthesizer made by Jeannine Han and Dan Riley at the Swedish School of Textiles, a highly interesting concept that transforms clothing into a MIDI interface.
Jeannine embed touch sensors, similar to the ones used in iPod and other touch screens into the textile. An AVR micro-controller with special touch-sensing code converts the hand gestures along the garment into musical commands for the music generator that actually produces the sound.
The textile sensory area stretches from the neck to the waist area producing smooth values smooth over the entire range. This allows to create harp sounds, piano sounds, or almost any sound that has been done up to now in the music world.
The textile synthesizer was designed by Jeannine for the ‘… traveling nomad who wishes to communicate with other nomads, sound is inspired by nature and reacts when someone comes close or touches the garment.’
Dan Riley, the technical wizard in this project, has already set this mind into finding ways to control the music better. I must say what the duo has done so far is quite impressive as you can see in the video below.
The Textile Synthesizer garment can be seen at the Nordic Museum in Stockholm until June 2010.