Theometrica Generative Sound Synthesis Instrument Inspired By Acupuncture


Theometrica is a generative sound synthesis instrument inspired by acupuncture.

Created by Oscar Palou & Alexander Müller-Rakow, Theometrica is a sound interface designed to explore “the relation of ethnologic, geometric graphics and generative sound synthesis”.

Inspired by acupuncture, this sculptural instrument is designed to control sound elements in real time by fixing specific pins into a spinning disk. 99 prepared needles, a distance rangefinder and Max/MSP sound generation software work together to let you use the pins to create geometric shapes that are translated into sound.

Here’s a video demo of the generative sound instrument in action:

via cna

16 thoughts on “Theometrica Generative Sound Synthesis Instrument Inspired By Acupuncture

  1. Seems like a great concept. Luckily it has nothing to do with acupuncture though, which still is one of the most basic forms of quackery. As a manufacturer I wouldn’t be associated with such a thing.

  2. Quackery, huh? You mean like menthol cigarettes prescribed by docs for breathing disorders like asthma en masse 60 years ago? Remember: if you can’t measure it, it doesn’t exist.

    In other news, this does look like an interesting project!

    1. How about a synth based on homeopathy – where you dip a curtis filter in some water, then dilute that water over a hundred times, then sell the water for twenty dollars?

    1. Yea, I can imagine that would be weird to see. Hard to say if you could have patented the idea, as reading the position of posts on a rotating disc might be too general. Still, yours was cool, too.

  3. OFF-TOPIC: I’ve seen a few studies that show that acupuncture is no better than a placebo. However, the placebo affect IS a real thing. A percentage of people do feel better and get better with any benign treatment combined with the power of suggestion and their own innate healing powers.

    ON-TOPIC: The wheel, pins & sensors are in large part a visual effect, coupled with a unique way to visualize and change the sequence.

    SNARKY COMMENT: Now all we need is to see someone using this making ill beats A. in the subway, B. on a train, C. in the club. When the wheel spins really fast, the needles all fly out and give people “treatments” at about waist-hight as the beat breaks down.

    1. Was going to say the same thing as your first point. I and many of my friends and family have found acupuncture to be helpful, and “no better than a placebo” doesn’t mean something doesn’t work. Many pharmaceuticals are barely better than placebos in the tests submitted to the FDA for approval.

      1. (MORE OFF-TOPIC) I think it is a little tricky because people might spend a great deal of money on treatments that are merely triggers for their own inner healing capacities. Also, there are times when a confident practitioner of Traditional Chinese Medicine might offer to treat some conditions that require a different, and perhaps more aggressive care (thus delaying treatment).

        I think one way this could relate to a general discussion of synthesizers is that folks could do double-blind tests of analog versus specific digital emulations. The placebo effect might mean that something “just sounds better” “warmer” “more open” “fatter” “smoother” etc. than it’s emulating counterpart. I’m not saying that all emulations are good. I just think that the placebo-effect often affects those kinds of comparisons.

  4. I know it can be difficult to understand the word “inspired”, and perhaps even more when is together with “by acupuncture”. But guys, don’t worry, hopefully one day you will understand that when someone finds a red balloon floating in the air, and suddenly that person that see it, decides to eat a tomato salad because he gets inspiration from that red mass in contrast with the blue sky, that doesn’t mean that his tomato salad is instead of a tomato salad, a red balloon salad! Sometimes I got inspiration from God… should we open a debate about the placebo or effective aspects of God!? Im craving for it! Too many people around got bored … start creating and avoid stupid discussions about chinese medicine technics… They work, dont worry about that. Its been a long time since this technics are developing…. tha question if it does or not work, is already answered and understood… and if not, try it instead of reading bullshit! Love you guys! 😉

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