Looking Outwards – maxmsp

The Infinite Adventure Machine (prototype 01) from David Benqué on Vimeo.

“The Infinite Adventure Machine” by David Benqué is a program designed to create fully computationally generated stories based on common storybook traits. Apparently, all aspects Russian folk-tales (the type of stories this project was based upon) can be boiled down into 31 traits. This is very reminiscent of Joseph Campbell’s “Hero” analysis in Western literature.

The project on it’s own can only generate synopsis of stories, but to think that these synopsis are actually functional and engaging is quite impressive. I would like to incorporate this type of computational generation into some of my own work.

This Monome-like device is actually made out of 64 arcade-style buttons. The outputs of the buttons are strung through maxmsp to determine the final sound. I think that as a piece, the design is great. An arcade button is something which begs to be touched. The responsiveness of the button paired with sound allows users to transfer that urge to play into musical notes. This project was simple and to the point and I really enjoy that. Possibly designing some kind of system which could replicate human-response to this machine is something I would add on.

Synthpond is an application which uses maxmsp to create soundwaves/nodes that generate responsive sounds. Users can place nodes anywhere along a plane and once utilized, the nodes interact with each other. Soundwaves bounce off certain nodes and don’t react with others to create an immersive user experience. From the documentation I have seen though, Synthpond just seems like a quick application to use rather than an experience. I feel that to more truly realize the Synthpond idea it should be showcased in an area much larger than a phone so that people as well as placed nodes can interact with the waves created by the sounds they trigger.

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