The Pythagorean Lambdoma Harmonic Keyboard, designed by mathemetician Barbara Hero, is an unusual MIDI controller that’s based on ancient concepts and fundamental harmonic relationships between notes.
The keyboard is based on the Lambdoma Matrix, a mathematical grid attributed to the philosopher Pythagoras. The Matrix plots whole-number ratios, with whole numbers along on side (1,2,3,4….) and their inverse fractions (1/1, 1/2, 1/3, 1/4….) along the other.
Here’s an example, via Drew Lesso:
The grid shows the whole-number ratios that are possible, given these numbers. Applied to music, the grid shows simple whole-number rations in relationship to a fundamental tone (1), and all notes are based on these ratios will be “in-tune”.
Because of the nature of the mathematics underlying the keyboard, some suggest that the Pythagorean Lambdoma Harmonic Keyboard could reveal the key to the universe:
Why do we assert that the Pythagorean Lambdoma Harmonic Keyboard holds the key to unlock the mysteries of the universe?
First, we can measure the frequency of colors, chemical elements, organs of the body, and anything else, even planets, stars and galaxies. Then we can “translate” these frequencies to sounds that we can hear. Using the PLHK we can play, and play with, these sounds. Hearing these “new” sounds can be profoundly healing. Many people report that these sounds induce expanded states of consciousness.
Barbara’s PLHK’s computer program also shows the beautiful sacred geometric shapes that correspond with the relationships, or ratios, between pairs of notes and even chords.
Here’s an overview and demonstration of the Pythagorean Lambdoma Harmonic Keyboard by designer Barbara Hero. In the video, Hero uses the keyboard to demonstrate basic harmonic relationships and the simple geometric shapes that the harmonic relationships create: