Final Project : Voices In Your Head Beginnings

My final project consists of a chunk of my larger project, Voices In Your Head. This project utilizes a Soundlazer to project sound to unsuspecting passers-by without revealing its location. The properties of parametric speakers allows one to ‘bounce’ sound off of surfaces to the ears of the intended recipient. Using a Kinect and site-specific trigonometric calculations, the speakers position themselves to target specific people within its range. The recipient’s ears can only track the sound to the last surface it bounced off of, giving the illusion that a wall or some other inanimate object is talking to them. A diagram of this phenomenon is displayed below:


The sound will be controlled via a PureData sketch run on the Raspberry Pi. The subject matter of the audio will be different depending on the number of people within audible proximity of the installation. Even if there are people nearby, the speakers will only emit sound for a small fraction of the total number of people walking by. Also, if anyone approaches the perceived origin of the sound, then the speaker will stop emitting sound, so as not to be discovered. If a group of two or more people are near the speaker, the Kinect will . However, a person by themselves will have a voice whisper in their ear. The voice will whisper messages intended to cause paranoia, shame, or megalomania (eg. “(s)he’s cheating on you” , “you are God” , “i hate you” etc). If someone brings someone else to hear it, they will hear nothing. Not only this, but even when people are alone, the speaker will only trigger a very small percentage of the time that its conditions are met.

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