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So two weeks ago we took our cardboard model and began rebuilding it with the foam. To our surprise, this wasn't quite as hard as we had expected. We figured that some modifications might need to be made in order to compensate for the extra inch of thickness not accounted for with the cardboard; however, this was not the case. (yay!) Here is a super speedy video documenting the process of building the top portion of the dome and the lower jaw.WARNING: This looks much more productive than it actually was. Really.
Leonard Head Construction Day 1 from Ryan Spicer on Vimeo.

Last week we began exploring ways in which to fasten the head and jaw to the football shoulder pads that Shawn will be wearing. We were quickly inspired by good ol' Abe and built ourselves a foam Lincoln hat to attach to the inside of the dome in order to help support the shape and keep it from collapsing. (We think this may become a problem once we add the weight of the fabric, eyes, teeth, etc. to the foam structure.)

We also began playing with the Miditron and the fabric bend sensors via a breadboard - the Miditron progress is moving a little slower because we are waiting to see what the length/thickness of the joint areas needing fabric bend sensors will be before we make all of them (We are not yet sure how long the teeth, ears, arm joints will be. Also, the thickness of the fabric we use to cover Leonard will influence how long we need to make the bend sensors.) I will have pictures in the next blog.That is it for now. Just to give you an idea of what is next - We are currently in the process of connecting the Lincoln hat to the dome, reinforcing the whole dome structure, and buying fabric to begin building the body of the costume this and descriptions soon to come!Jessica
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videodance festival milan italy (solo)

SOLO IN ACTION WINTERThe Solo dance in the video formatCALL FOR PROPOSALSSOLO IN ACTION is a committed approach to dancing that allows dancers to stretch their imagination by pushing movement and dance beyond all limits and expectations. The movement itself is what characterizes the dancer involved in his/her research, expanding the idea of a performance that is not necessarily fenced in by a fixed choreography or by a closed or blocked choreographed project, but which incorporates improvisation as an option.Unlike its summer edition, based on live performances, the winter festival focusses on Solo dance through video language, inolving both performer and video maker. The videos will be included in a collective exhibition which will run for two weeks in February 2009 at Studio28 in Milan.Requirements:• estimated video lenght: maximum fifteen minutes.• Format: DVD or MiniDV• There are not restrictions on :• themes• shooting tecniques• number of people involved in the project provided that the performer solo nature is clearly defined and remarked in the video.• The call is also open to already made videos with no time restrictions.Video material must be sent NLT by December 5th, 2008, to: Perypezye Urbane, via Moretto da Brescia 27, 20133 Milan (Italy):1. Video (DVD or Minidv)2. short written description of the project3. short written presentation of the author*Sale of the selected videos, either the entire performance or a single frame, will be considered as an option.
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I am in Dresden for the Post Me New ID Forum, an event framed within the CY NET art_08. Last night was the opening and awarding to artists with a mild protocol with the presence of the minister of culture, many other officials and of course many artists... I was impressed by the beautiful and historically meaningful building where the festival is taking place: HELLERAU


See more information in The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Eurhythmics of Jaques-Dalcroze, by Emile Jaques-Dalcroze
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Fast + Dirty at the Lemon Tree Aberdeen

Thought I'd share this video of a dance piece I was involved in last week, we only had 4 days working together to develop a performance and this is what we came up with. visuals are real time generated in jitter based on the audio and the dancers movement, the audio is live cello being processed through max/msp. Hope you like.
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Workshop "Better than Reality" call for participation

Better than Reality is a project in which artistic use of augmented reality technology is explored. After a series of residencies that took place last summer, V2_Lab now opens up the technology to artists and developers in the form of two hands-on workshops.Deadline for application November 13, 2008.Last summer three artists in residence explored three central aspects of Augmented Realities (AR): While Marnix de Nijs (NL) continued his Exercise in Immersion 4 project focusing on interactive scenarios in AR, Boris Debackere (BE) researched spatial sound in AR and Jonas Hielscher (DE) worked on the 3D and visual aspects of AR.From November 24 to 27, 2008, V2_Lab will organise a workshop split up into two tracks. After a joint introduction, Boris Debackere and Jonas Hielscher will each lead one workshop track; focusing on the audio and visual aspects of AR, respectively. Marnix de Nijs will alternate between the workshops to provide critical feedback on the immersive aspects of participants’ concepts. The participants will partake in hands-on sessions that involve both conceptual and technical development. The fourth day of the workshop will consist of an ‘open space’ for participants to play with the technology platform. Developers from V2_Lab are available for technical assistance throughout the workshop. The aim of the workshops is to provide participants with an extensive overview of state-of-the-art artistic use of AR, hands-on experience, and an opportunity to apply their own artistic concepts using AR.The workshops are open to (art) students, artists, and other professionals who are interested in the artistic use of AR. Basic knowledge of Blender (3D modelling), audio composition, Max/MSP, programming, and/or scripting languages are a minimal requirement for participation. An overview of the results of the workshops will be presented in one of V2_’s Test_Lab events taking place in early December 2008.The number of participants is limited, in case of too many subscriptions V2_ reserves the right to select participants.The fee for participation is € 50,- (to be paid before the workshop), this includes coffee/tea and lunch but no accommodation. A reduced fee for students is possible upon request. Please use the form available on for your application.Augmented Reality is an umbrella term for various techniques that make it possible to add virtual elements to the physical world, for example overlaid visuals or spatialised sounds. The technologies underlying such environments are, however, still very experimental, and therefore often inaccessible to artists. To enable more artists to create augmented reality artworks, V2_Lab has developed a software/hardware platform called VGE (V2_ Game Engine), based on Ogre3D, OpenAL, ultrasound positioning and various types of sensors. Artists can create immersive experiences using Blender, Max/MSP and tangible interface tools. The user of the system wears a set of stereo video displays that show a mix of 3D visuals and real world video, from a head mounted stereo camera. The position in space and orientation of the user’s head are tracked. Furthermore, the geometry of the physical space is modelled in a virtual model. Together, the tracking and the virtual modelling allow a fixation of the virtual world on the real world, by which virtual elements can behave as if they are part of the physical space. For instance, a virtual object can disappear behind a real wall. Our aim is to extend the VGE into an accessible authoring environment for artistic augmented reality environments.Over the past years V2_Lab has been on the forefront of developments of artistic use of Augmented Reality technology. The most prominent example was the presentation of the prototype of the Exercise in Immersion 4 project, created in collaboration with artist Marnix de Nijs (NL), during the Dutch Electronic Art Festival in 2007.Jonas Hielscher, www.pixelsix.orgMarnix de Nijs, www.marnixdenijs.nlBoris Debackere, www.rotorscoop.netPlease use the form available on or follow this link for your application.For more information about the Better than Reality project, please contact Jan Misker at or +31 (0)10 2067273Better than Reality is supported by the Mondriaan Foundation, Dienst Kunst and Cultuur of the City of Rotterdam and MultimediaN
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Robot-Human Movement Video Sketches.

Please watch these via this link to my music collaborator's page on Vimeo: free to post comments there (if you have an account) or to me directly. These 'sketches' are for a show with the twitchie robot in Cambridge MA on November 14/15, 2008. Max Lord is playing the Buchla Marimba Lumina, a mid-marimba, with a buchla synthesizer
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Hello dance-techers, It’s been a while, and plenty to report. Get ready for an exciting ride!

First and foremost, I am going to be attending “Post Me_New ID” in Dresden (Germany) from 31st October to 2nd November 2008, where I will have the opportunity to present our network in the QuickFire sessions. If you’re going, please get in touch with me, as I would love to meet as many of you as possible. Dance Tech: The Series

The “Dance Tech” series will be premiering next week on TenduTV . The first episode presents highlights and excerpts of interviews with Gideon Obarzanek, Jill Johnson and Rachid Ouramdane. It has been an exciting and educational experience to work with Marc Kirschner from TenduTV and co-Exec producer Kevin Harkins to put together a very dynamic and deep program that reflects the sophistication of our artists/thinkers/researchers. TenduTV will be available on and TidalTV. Dance Tech: The meetup
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The first-ever Dance Tech meetup was a great success. Guest speakers Robert Wechsler from Palindrome (Germany), Dawn Stoppiello from Troika Ranch (USA/Germany)and Deirdre Towers from the Dance Films Association (USA), shared with more than 30 people their perspectives and experience on interactive performance, the use of real-time tools for creation and contemporary dance films. Many thanks are owed to Dance New Amsterdam for allowing us to use their beautiful theater for the evening and to Jaki Levy form Misnomer Dance Company for co-organizing this event! Travels and New Partner Networks
Encuentra más fotos como esta en La Red Sudamericana de Danza
I recently returned from Brazil, where I attended the 7th Encuentro Red Sudamericana de Danza, which took place during the International Dance Festival in Recife. This annual event gathers the core members of the South American dance network to evaluate and develop strategies for collaboration among all levels of the cultural production and research of dance. I was honored to share with them my experience with, and we became a model for the launching of their own social networking site. We had very interesting discussions and some of the topics were of a very high level: epistemology of the south, networks and cultural enterprise and amazing beaches! I hope you’ll all join me in welcoming Red Sudamericana de Danza as a partner network! CALL for Projects!! INTERFACING MOTION with Wireless Miditron Fall 2008 with the support of Eroktronix is launching the contest "Interfacing Motion with MidiTron Wireless" to support a young active dance/performance artist in his or her initial explorations on interactive multimedia control for live performance of movement. For each of two consecutive 6-month periods,a selected artist will be given a new MidiTron Wireless to be used as an interface in new project involving the use of physical sensors for gestural control of multimedia during live performance. Back to Post Me_New ID From their site: The forum is planned as a platform for reflection on how we are creatively and socially engaged in digital networks, how we perform our online and offline identities, how we have become plural and variable post human bodies. Among the speakers and performers there will be kondition pluriel (Germany/Canada), Mika Satomi and Hannah Perner-Wilson (Austria), Steve Dixon (UK), Yacov Sharir (USA), Masaki Fujihata (Japan), Hellen Sky (Australia), Denisa Kera (Czech Republic/Singapore), Michael Takeo Magruder (US/UK), Fiddian Warman (UK), Sita Popat (UK), Susanne Berkenheger (Germany) and many more. Sounds very interesting! So, if you are around…let’s meetup! Until next time, Marlon
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Leonard Mock-Up

This Monday a bunch of us got together and started to design Leonard's head. We will be making the head out of dense foam, but we started with a cardboard model connected with duct tape. (cheap and easy) Here are some pictures from our workshop meeting...

Our plan is to make a giant dome for the top of the head and a separate jaw that will hang from the shoulders and rest on the front of the torso. In other words, when worn, it will NOT look like this...

It will look more like this..

(The guy in the cardboard is Shawn - he will be wearing the costume.)We bought football shoulder pads for the harness because of their snug fit to the body and wide surface area for connecting the costume pieces. We will modify the pads and attach the different pieces to them...How you ask? We don't know yet. This upcoming Monday we are gathering for Leonard workshop #2. We will be 1. constructing the actual head and jaw with foam and 2. deciding how to attach everything together. More pictures and updates to come next week!JessicaPS. If you want to check out more pictures from our cardboard meeting - click here.
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Max Month 4~ish

Sample Accurate timing and LatencyThis month I have mostly been making drum machines. I started off making a counter driven sequencer but the timing was pretty sloppy even with overdrive on I could feel the sloppyness and if my laptop started doing some background processes then my MIDI timing would suffer. Not too much but enough to be a distraction.I had a look around at a few externals out there and decide try out Eric Lyons Sample Accurate Multiple Metrone (samm~). The timing is now completely sample accurate I can have bpms well into the thousands and not notice any lag or timing inconsitency. The timing is perfect but the patch throws up other problems. So far I cannot work out a way to include swing or shuffle into the patch. So it the timing is perfect if a little straight for my tastes.My touchscreen overlay arrived. I removed front cover from a 15" flatscreen monitors a placed the touchscreen overlay on top and housed both in a wooden case. I now have a very tasty(and cheap) single touch touchscreen. I designed the interface for the drummachine to be very touch. Nice big switches and sliders and pretty colours. Also included are 2 FX with XY pads. A reverb and a tape delay with a good few slider/button controls and then the most performance orientated parameters are controlled by the XY pads. So far it's very enjoyable to use.I got my camera (a logictech 9000) and while it is good for chatting to my brother on skype it suffers from latency. Probably not enough to hinder a conversation but diffinetly enough to cause problems if I want to track motion or to trigger events based on a dancers location. The lag is approx 25ms. This is very noticable timing problem when dealing with motion and sound. I'm not sure what to do about it. Appearently a firewire camera will cut down on the latency but I do not have the cash so I'm going to have to work something else out.Next week I will get to play with some I-Cube X sensors. They have very useful sensors for physical computing. Push, bend, proximity sensors. At the minute I am trying to figure out what I can do and what I am not ready for yet. Once I understand the technologies in more context I will start working on a small scale with dancers. The dancers themselves are very eager to get involved with new technology and anything that can extend the physical expression to other sense I think is greatly appreciated by them.Well this time next month I'll have finished my first gig in Max and should have done some work with the dancers. So till then :)Ken
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Movimientos Compartidos: REDSD

Marlon Barrios Solano danza y nuevas tecnologias, nuevos medios para la innovacion social red social/comunidad de practica dance-tech.TV: canal colaborativo de video
Find more videos like this on entrevistas/documentacion del conocimiento/etnografia DANCE TECH: programa para TenduTV (primer canal banda ancha dedicado a la danza en el internet) Un episodio al mes) Produccion colaborativa, informacion o programas en una plataforma interactiva, abierta para innovacion y replicacion de modelos de produccion Colaboracion: Sistema diseniado para la colaboracion Cambio: percepcion aumentada Troika Ranch Glow/Chunky Move Blast Theory Josephine Dorado/Kids Connect
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Blogosphere: We Feel Fine Narrativa, historia, auto-organizacion... Improv Everywhere Ashley Friend
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Jodie Spearling Marketing? Que ha cambiado? Infrestructura de Fibra optica Protocolos y estandares Convergencia Miniaturizacion Portabilidad Bajos Costos Acceso Connectividad massiva Dentro del disenio urbano/metodo Movimientos: Open source/free software Publicacion de API desarrollo collaborativo/inteligencia distribuida Nuevos modelos de produccion y atribucion de derechos de autoria Gran Capacidad almacenamiento de datos en forma interactivaData base driven websites (PHP/Mysql) Video/processamiento de la images con Flash video/flash servers Ajax (procesamiento en le browser) A nivel the funcion: Automatizacion/interactividad/generatividad A nivel de arquitectura Control, agencia, autonomia Arquitecturas Bottom-up permiten participacion de los usuarios en el desarrollo de contenido Sitios web de estaticos a dinamicos/ mas alla de animacion/informacion es dinamica y cambiente creada por los ususarios La red es escribible Cambios en publicacion, prensa, mercadeo, investigacion Proceso de proceso Modelo Tradicional de Publicacion Unidireccional Uno a muchos Seleccion de contenido por expertos= importante CAMBIOS web 2.0 Proceso/proceso/proceso Servicio no producto Participacion en el desarrollo del contenido. Platafomas que cambian Esfuerzo colectivo Transparencia Presencia/telepresencia/co-presencia Memorias/historias/documentacion retroalimentacion (tiempo real) Plataformas: Blogs: Wordpress, Joomla, Drupal Blogger Podcasts? Sindicacion? RSS feed Agreagdores Plataformas collaborativas: Foros List servs Wikis Kaltura Jumpcut Redes sociales; Facebook My Space Redes sociales adaptables: Ning Prople aggregator Folksonomies: etiquetas Servicios: Flickr relaciones semanticas autogeneradas Social Bookmarking: delicious Clipmarks Browser Configutables: Firefox Documentos Google Streaming UStreaming Link here Collaboracion en-linea y manejo de projectos: Dot project Basecamp Backpack Plataformas de Reunion Alternativas/espacios abiertos: BARCAMP Unconferences Mapas cognitivos colaborativos Tweeter/Microblogging open id Second Life creative Commons Espacios Virtuales? Local a distribuido
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1st Blog for the Miditron Wireless Competition

Hello fellow dance-techers! This is my first official blog for the miditron wireless project I will be working on the next six months-ish. I hope to post more than once a month with small updates, images, and video – so keep an eye out for it. To start, I thought that I would give you an overview of the project and how it fits into a larger piece currently under construction. This first blog will be a bit lengthy, but I’m hoping to keep future blogs shorter with more pictures and videos.


MidiTron Wireless Control for a Life-Sized Puppet

I am working with a team of designers to construct the costume of a life-sized puppet named Leonard. The wonderful people involved with the project are as follows…- Jordan Golding , professional costume builder/sculpture/visual artist- Christopher Martinez, composer/media artist/programmer/visual artist- Stjepan Rajko, programmer/dancer- Shawn Cook, programmer/media artist/sweet man who volunteered to wear the costumeThe Leonard costume will be equipped with sensors that 1. detect costume animation by the actor wearing the costume (Shawn), and 2. detect costume animation by outside actors and audience members who are interacting with the costume externally. Leonard will be modeled after the following hand puppet…

Blue = Sensors for actor/wearer manipulation

Red = Sensors for manipulation by external actors/audience members


We plan use two types of sensors for Leonard.1. 3-axis accelerometer2. Fabric bend sensors (These are amazing, cheep, and homemade! If you are interested in making your own check out this instructables website by Hannah Perner-Wilson -- they’re really easy to make)Sensors used to detect costume animation by the actor wearing the costume1. A 3-axis accelerometer and compass placed in the body of the costume will report movement and orientation data. We will use this data to model Leonard’s general whole body movement and traveling through space.2. Two fabric bend sensors installed at the seam where the arm is attached at the body will report the relative position and activity rate of Leonard's arm gestures. This data will be used to model Leonard’s arm movement/gestures.In total, the two sets of sensors will provide us with 6 dimensions of data from which we can infer Leonard’s movement quality and general emotional state. For example, we will be able to distinguish smooth movement from jerky movement, as well as linear movement patterns from angular movement patterns. This information can then be used to describe Leonard’s behavioral state (example: excited vs. calm).Sensors used to detect costume animation by actors and audience members who are interacting with the costume externallyActors/audience members will be able to perform the following actions with Leonard (amongst other things)…* hugging Leonard (Leonard will hug the person back and trigger bend sensors in both hands)* shaking or holding Leonard's hands (this will activate a bend sensor in one hand)* playing with, brushing, or adjusting Leonard's teeth (this will generate activity in bend pressures sensors placed in a tooth)* scratching the underside of Leonard's ears (this will activate the bend sensors located at the crease of the ears)These sensors will be used primarily to manipulate forms of digital media that reinforce the semantics associated with playing and cuddling a stuffed toy. The resulting media artifacts that emerge are intended to be humorous, child-like, annoying, playful, lovable, and cute.

System description regarding sensing and processing

All sensors inside the costume will be wired to the MidiTron Wireless for broadcasting sensor data to computers for processing. The MidiTron Wireless will provide Leonard access to the entire theater space without loss of interactive capabilities, or the need for cumbersome cables that would prevent seamless interaction and accessibility to members throughout the entire audience space.We will route the MIDI sensor data to MAX/MSP and custom-built software for real-time filtering and movement analysis. We intend to use the processed data to manipulate audio and possibly video in the performance and audience space.

Case Study: The Performance Context For Leonard

Leonard is one part of a larger funded work titled Case Study. While the online component of the piece is currently under development, the live performance, in which the costume will be used, will take place February 27th-March 1st.The current plot of Case Study revolves around a woman, Diane Murdock, who is a part of a case study organized by a group of researchers known as Sector 16 (check out the Sector-16 website). Sector-16 is a mysterious psychology research team that performs case studies on unknowing participants to better understand the complicated human mind. Sector-16’s first pet project is Diane. Sector-16 finds Diane enticing as a case study subject because she suffers from a long list of behavioral disorders including social anxiety disorder, dissociation disorder, and intermittent explosive disorder. More importantly, she refuses to leave her house. S-16 has full control over Diane’s physical surroundings; however, Diane is oblivious to their presence in her life. The live performance of Case Study will be Sector-16’s first public lecture/demonstration about their research. (Click here for more information about Case Study and links to the different online portions of the piece)So who is Leonard in the context of this piece??? Leonard is Diane’s imaginary friend, a life size version of her psychiatrist’s therapy puppet. Diane created Leonard in order to break up the long periods of isolation she encounters while secluded in her home. She also blames him for the messy aftermath of her frequent and violent rages she never remembers performing. Diane treats Leonard as a best friend and a scapegoat, though it is clear that he is more of a nuisance then a good friend. Whiney, excitable, and naïve, Leonard appears to act more like a child than the best friend of an adult woman. One reason for this childlike manifestation is due to Diane’s underdeveloped understanding of a relationship, whether it be friendly or romantic. This underdeveloped concept of a friend will be manifested in the media feedback generated by Leonard. The sounds associated with Leonard will consist of childlike clicks, pops, squeaks, gurgles, grunts, and laughs. The resulting sound will be a mix of child and children’s toy noises.Other interesting and notable informational tidbits about the Case Study creative/development processWe are using and extending a couple of tools as a part of the creative/development process. The first tool is Rehearsal Assistant which we are planning to use to play media in rehearsals as well as record rehearsal footage. The second tool is MetavidWiki, an extension to MediaWiki, which we are planning to use for archival and collaborative annotation of rehearsal footage.In our blogs, we will share our experience in using and extending these tools. So far, we have experimented with some uploading of rehearsal footage to MetavidWiki, but need to work out problems in the re-encoding of video. So look for more info and footage supporting this aspect of the piece in future blogs.I suppose that is it for now. We are in the process of building the internal foam structure of Leonard’s head, so pictures will be soon to follow!!!Jessica
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