Inspired by Atlanta's Piano for Peace project, I noticed that publicly accessible music brought individuals together in a public forum. People who would not normally socialize were bonding over these instruments.
I wondered if I could use technology to enhance the bonding effect of public instruments and reduce their barrier -of-use.
Melofiti was built on the idea of musifying environments. Using pocket-sized modules that could be put on any surface, users can create instruments out of anything around them. Using the app, they can locate where public modules are in the city and upload different soundscapes to them when nearby.
I experimented with a variety of sensors to achieve the goal of sensing taps in specific locations. Eventually, I settled on using piezo-vibration sensors in an array. I would compare their relative values to determine which directions taps or knocks on a surface were coming from.
I subsequently employed a bluetooth module to communicate with a cell phone app. Using a simple Arduino-Android application, I could change the scale of notes that were played when different taps were sensed on the surface.
I presented the project to the Georgia Tech Convergence Innovation Competition. Along with the prototype I also made a 3-D printed model of what I envisioned the final module would look like. I pitched the idea on the platform of creating a social environment in public forums and reducing the barrier-of-participation in that environment through technology.