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I Made a Makey-Makey Contraption that Accidentally Resembles an Explosive Device


  • Beta Gold

    Hello all,

    As I said in my other post, I made a MIDI instrument out of a bandolier (ammo belt), plugs from theatrical lighting instruments, scrap wire, friction tape, found zip/cable ties, and a Makey Makey that I wore and played for a piece with my multi-discipline ensemble, BLURB.  (Some of you saw me wearing this, fine-tuning it, and playing with it at Isadora Werkstatt Berlin 2017. I bet you can imagine how much fun it was going through airport security with this lovely bomb-looking device.) I thought it'd be fun to show a couple pictures and a video. 

    In Berlin, I refined it and made it more wearable by adding a leather pouch, (which holds the Makey Makey on my back), and a gooseneck sink spout, (which hangs on my shoulder and supports the weight of the pouch to take strain of off the wires and connections). I clip the spout to the ground on the Makey Makey and run an alligator clip wire from the spout to my earring, so when I touch the lighting plugs on the bandolier, I complete the various circuits.

    It's not *really* a MIDI instrument in that it's functionally a glorified, wearable computer keyboard, but I pair it with a simple MIDI synth program called MIDI Mock and/or Keyboard Watcher and Send Note actors in Isadora when I use it. I tend to use it as a MIDI Instrument, but it's technically more of a control device that I choose to use as a MIDI instrument. 


    The components before I completed the tweaks I made in Berlin



    Me wearing my hideous creation:



    The ground connection to my earring.


    A very short demo:


    My next step in the refinement process is going to be finding a reliable and affordable way to do wireless USB to USB so I have more freedom of movement, because at the moment, I need to stay next to my computer with a USB extension plugged in.

    I'd love to see any cool wearables that other folks have made or plan on making.

    Best wishes,

    Woland



  • @woland

    Any reason why you aren't using a WiFi board and connect it using OSC/ artnet? 


  • Beta Gold

    @juriaan

    The reason is that I really cobbled this together in a day. A few days before the performance, the composer said "I need more noise onstage", so I said I'd build myself something. It wasn't methodically thought out or extensively planned, all the materials I used to create it were just things I already had on hand (before I refined it in Berlin). The beauty of this concept is also that it just uses keyboard watchers, and the Makey Makey works on Mac and PC with no drivers, supplementary software, or setup.

    I've since sort of fallen in love with it, and I'm sure that there are better ways to go about it, but I'm enjoying exploring the road this is taking me down. Maybe I'll make a second one using the method you described, but this first one is, and forever will be, my baby, flaws and all.

    Best wishes,

    Woland


  • Beta Gold

    @juriaan

    Do you have a Wifi board that you'd recommend?


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