Man machine interaction

I know I always come up with “strange” topics but I guess that’s just my way of being :slight_smile:
I have been thinking alot about electronic music lately, and I’ve had lots of discussions about synths with friends, and the more I get into the whole topic, the more I realize one thing: what the world needs is not another synthesis method, it needs better controllers!
I’ll explain this better, we already have some great solutions for synthesis: wavetables, FM, granular, physical modeling and so on… what is still a bit of a problem is the way we interact with these methods, and genrally speaking with synthesizers. The keyboard is nice, but is a bit static, and not really as flexible as we sometimes we wish it was. There has been a good number of great controllers in the last years, like the Eigenharps, the lazer harp (nor really a recent one I admit it), stuff that uses webcams or the X-box Kinect, reatable, the monome, and the one whose I can’t remember, which was a mix between an optical theremin and a keyboard… just to name a few.

But the problem with most controllers is: they are expensive and usually don’t come as a DIY kit.
So now that Mutable Instruments has a great Synth what about adding a great and innovative controller to it (somewhere in the far future)?

I don’t feel I am the right person to do that. My interest is in audio/dsp, analog electronics and embedded systems. I also feel that for controllers, the mechanical / industrial design aspect is the most important, and it makes things less practical for DIY. And even if it was just about building the electronics “guts” of a controller, I think that there is too much variance in what people want and expect that it would be hard to do a “one size fits all” project.

well it was just one of my random ideas! :slight_smile:
You’re certainly right about the mechanical/industrial aspects, and also for the difficulty of creating a “one size” fits all project… though, regarding the latter, you probably have the same issue with synth development as well. I mean we’ve seen that in the latest discussions about the future of mutable instruments.

Synth development is a no-brainer for me. I just do the synth that “feels” right to me. I don’t have the same intuition / feeling with controllers.

Have a read of this book, then have a go yourself!

http://www.nicolascollins.com/read.htm

Seriously any interested in DIY should have a read of this, it’s excellent.

have it! reading it right now :slight_smile: great book!

true.