Drancing with Wiimotes via wireless Bluetooth (since 2008)

Drancing: PureData/GEM prototype for Wii Remote: downloads and HOWTO for Mac OS-X

Drancing is Dr Darren's real-time synthesis accelerometer music system ("air music" instrument), under development since about 1996, and now available for the Wii Remote (as wireless accelerometer) for Mac OS-X (only so far) as a PureData/GEM rapid prototype (only). This page explains what is known to work on a shiny new MacBook Pro with Leopard 10.5.3 or higher.

CAVEAT: this is UNSUPPORTED software; it is a rapid prototype ONLY, i.e. not even 'alpha'.
It does however already work quite well for me, and it's a lot of fun (visit these videos for evidence).
The Drancing accelerometer music synthesis system, Wiimotes version, in action

Video: YouTube: Drancing accelerometer music with Wiimotes: 3D variable frequency oscillators + amplitude variation + triggered "air drum" samples

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Scenes

Demonstrates combined oscillator frequency variation, amplitude variation, and triggered Drum sample ("Drumming by Dancing") modes along with Drancel RGB monitor visuals projected onto the "Drancer" performer.

For this demonstration two hand-held WiiTM Remotes on a MacBook Pro were used. (The original Drancing accelerometer suit (since 1997) used 5 triaxial accelerometers in a "body star" pattern").

Video: YouTube: Drancing accelerometer music with Wiimotes: 3D variable frequency oscillators + triggered "air drum" samples

Play video (then use fullscreen !)
ERROR: You are missing some Flash content that should appear here! Perhaps your browser cannot display it, or maybe it did not initialise correctly.
This error usually only occurs if embedding remote content fails; Please try playing the original video on the original site using the following link.
Scenes

Demonstrates variable frequency oscillators + triggered drum samples ("Drumming by Dancing", "air drums") modes along with Drancel RGB monitor visuals projected onto the "Drancer" performer.

For this demonstration two hand-held WiiTM Remotes on a MacBook Pro were used.

Video: YouTube: Drancing accelerometer music with Wiimotes: 3D amplitude (volume) variation + triggered "air drum" samples

Play video (then use fullscreen !)
ERROR: You are missing some Flash content that should appear here! Perhaps your browser cannot display it, or maybe it did not initialise correctly.
This error usually only occurs if embedding remote content fails; Please try playing the original video on the original site using the following link.
Scenes

Demonstrates combined amplitude (volume) variation, and triggered drum samples ("Drumming by Dancing", "air drums") modes along with Drancel RGB monitor visuals projected onto the "Drancer" performer. Includes stereo echo with constant timescale and some feedback.

For this demonstration two hand-held WiiTM Remotes on a MacBook Pro were used. (The original Drancing accelerometer suit (since 1997) used 5 triaxial accelerometers in a "body star" pattern").

Video: Drancel RGB accelerometer "light horns" sound=colour synthesis principle (with 3 Variable Frequency Oscillators): driven by Wiimote

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Scenes

Demonstrates one Drancel RGB accelerometer synthesis atom design, with orthogonal "light cones" (which can correspond to LEDs with reflectors). The sound here is synthesised from WiiTM Remote accelerometer signals driving Variable Frequency Oscillators (VFOs) in Pure Data; the visuals are in GEM.

Video: 2 Drancers (acceleration avatars) each with 5 Drancels: in PureData/GEM Prototype of DranceWare: Driven by Wiimote

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Scenes

Demonstrates 2 "Drancer" acceleration avatars, each with 5 Drancel RGB triaxial accelerometer synthesis atoms, with orthogonal "light cones" (which correspond to LEDs with reflectors). The sound here is synthesised from 2 sets of WiiTM Remote accelerometer signals driving Variable Frequency Oscillators (VFOs) in Pure Data; the visuals are in GEM. (For this demonstration every Drancel RGB of each Drancer receives the same signals.)

Drancing.pd

Drancing.pd

The "executable" 0th level Drancing.pd is just a wrapper for the PureData version of the DranceWare GUI for Drancing. It does not show any connections, so it acts more like a skin than the wrapped 1st level <a href="https://www.webel.com.au/image/drancewarepd">DranceWare.pd</a>. Note the use of deep nesting of UI canvases from nested abstractions.

Drancel.pd

Drancel.pd

A Drancel is the virtual synthesis 3D "atom" of the Drancing accelerometer music system (where "music" means here both real-time sound and light synthesis).

A Drancel is designed to work with ANY triaxial accelerometer (of which the WiiTM Remote is a convenient example, thanks to its leverage of Bluetooth™ wireless technology).

It is the calibrated, conditioned, "homed", virtual Drancel that is considered to synthesise, not the triaxial accelerometer, which is merely a source of (X,Y,Z) acceleration signals that are mapped to synthesis channel triads and (R,G,B) (or other) light components.

A Drancel RGB (drancing light element) is to Drancing synthesis what a "pixel" (picture element) is to a picture.

Imagine hundreds of "Drancers" (Drancing performers), each with 5 Drancel RGB units, each synthesising sound and light, and you get the picture ! Can you hear it ? Can you see it ? That's the Drancing vision !

Drancels can act as independent synthesis units or they can be combined (multiplexed) to create arbitrarily complex syntheses. In this PureData prototype there are, however, only 2 Drancels, for 2 hand-held $Wiimotes$ as wireless accelerometer sources. (The original Drancing accelerometer suit (since 1997) had 5 triaxial accelerometers in a "body star" pattern.)

Currently the PureData synthesis prototype offers the following elementary synthesis units:

  • AM: modulation of the amplitudes of a triad of "fixed-frequency" oscillators,
    which frequencies can be set by the user using the sliders.
  • VFO: variable frequency oscillators: the user can set the scale of frequency driving, a frequency offset, the overall gain of the oscillations, and whether or not the frequencies are discretised to lock-on to MIDI note frequencies (as opposed to arbitrarily fine continjous frequency variation).
  • Drums: simple sample drums (I currently use the free AudioPervert CR-78 drum samples) which will probably be replaced soon with completely synthetic PureData drums.

Video: 2 Drancers (acceleration avatars) each with 5 Drancels: in PureData/GEM Prototype of DranceWare: rotating camera: driven by Wiimote

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Scenes

Demonstrates 2 "Drancer" acceleration avatars, each with 5 Drancel RGB triaxial accelerometer synthesis atoms, with orthogonal "light cones" (which correspond to LEDs with reflectors). The sound here is synthesised from 2 sets of WiiTM Remote accelerometer signals driving Variable Frequency Oscillators (VFOs) in Pure Data; the visuals are in GEM. (For this demonstration every Drancel RGB of each Drancer receives the same signals.)

Video: The Drancel RGB triaxial accelerometer colour=sound synthesis principle (with 3 Variable Frequency Oscillators): driven by Wiimote

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Scenes

A minimal example of Drancel RGB 2D visuals. The colour of the central circle is an average over the RGB colours corresponding to the XYZ axes of a triaxial accelerometer. Driven by a WiiTM Remote as wireless accelerometer signal source.

randomness