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augmented piano in augmented reality

Thanks to Augmented Reality we can now create virtual/physical instrumental hybrids with a spatial clarity and visual expressiveness that were impossible before. Augmented instruments are acoustic instruments whose technical and sonic possibilities are expanded through the means of software controlled by some sensor detecting a performer's action. Experimentations in this direction started decades ago, but only now it is possible to provide a 4D interactive visual feedback.

Beyond providing a clear representation of a virtual interface, Augmented Reality also allows and demands expressive visual design, increasing the communicative affordances of the augmented instrument and of the piece of music composed for it.

studi sulla realtà nuova

Studi sulla realtà nuova is a series of Etudes (still "under construction") dedicated to a new instrument: the augmented piano in augmented reality. The idea is to explore the boundaries of what is technically possible both technologically and physically. 

Augmented reality is still at an early stage and this fact translates into a sharp dificulty in getting high precision, which is of paramount importance for musical performance. The addition of extensions such as extra keys also creates new unprecedented challenges for the instrumentalist.

The realization of such a concept is extremely challenging also on the creator's side.

Studio n.2

for piano and AR environment

The work on the first studies allowed me to start considering different possibilities of augmentation for acoustic instruments. Beyond the simplest case (one single object mapped to one single result), I identified at least other three cases.

Composite interfaces

Many interfaces are arranged into one distinct group of interactive objects. Each object has a different result.

Multi-dimensional slider

One single interface allows a large number of different results by outputting continuous numbers on different axes. For example, the x, y, z axes when the hand is inside the interface.

Interface-notation hybrid

Among the most exciting possibilities offered by Augmented Reality, there is the possibility to merge notation and instrument in one single entity. This concept is also widely explored in LINEAR.

Here another example.