First Soft Circuits Open Lab

soft circuits open lab

This Sunday we're holding our first Soft Circuits Open Lab at the School of Fine Arts in Lisbon (FBAUL - Faculdade de Belas Artes de Lisboa). There is no predefined structure for the event. We will meet for the course of one day with the purposes of sharing knowledge, experimenting freely, advancing on-going projects, and just having fun working together. Some of the people attending will be specialists in electronics and others in textiles. Barcamp style impromptu presentations are very welcome.

Altlab will provide some basic tools such as pliers, scissors, soldering irons, ironing board, etc. But participants must bring all the materials and additional equipment necessary for their own projects/experiments (including laptops). Here are some suggestions: any kind of fabric, needles and thread, yarn, t-shirts, conductive and/or resistive fabric, conductive thread, conductive and/or resistive yarn, knitting and/or crochet needles, LEDs, coin cell batteries, battery holders, EL wire, strands of fiber optics, copper foil, copper adhesive track, aluminum foil, resistive foam, regular foam, arduinos (lilypad or any other kind). If you've never worked with any of these materials and don't have them handy, come anyway, you can help someone else with their project and learn along the way.

For more information on soft circuits techniques and materials, check out the Soft Circuits Resources section on the openMaterials wiki.

This open lab will take place on February 21st, from 10:30 to 18:30, at the School of Fine Arts in Lisbon, room 307, 1st floor (since our own space is still under construction). All are welcome, there is no fee nor registration, but please do let me know if you are planning on coming: catarinamota(at)audienciazero.org

Drum Pads

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Hey.

Four drum pads ready to go.

All made of old mate­ri­al found in the Alt/Lab ins­tal­la­ti­ons, and a very spe­ci­al big thankxxx for Móni­ca who brought the casings (we are going back to that in a moment) for the drum pads.

So the idea was to make drum pads that we could hook up to a sound card(or wha­te­ver) and them make swe­et music, this is a very nice com­bi­na­ti­on betwe­en pie­zo­e­lec­tric com­po­nents and a few layers of some absor­bent sound  mate­ri­al like rub­ber or cork foil (that’s what we use becau­se the­re was nothing more) and a pie­ce of alu­mi­num foil for a gre­a­ter drum area .

We use an old can (20l) of paint, four pie­zo­e­lec­tric found in elec­tro­nic junk like old modems and old telepho­nes, wire for con­nec­ting the pie­zos, cork foil for insu­la­ti­on the drum pad area and Móni­ca sup­ply the casings (squa­re rub­ber cd´s stands), and glue for put­ting everything nice and tight .

First we cut a pie­ce of the can (cir­cu­lar about 10cm radius)and we glu­ed the pie­zo into it, then we dril­led one hole into the rub­ber casing for the wires to came out, them we cut two squa­re cork foil parts (the first in the bot­tom of the casing and the other for the top) a bit of glue and that’s it drum pads ready to rock.

Now we got some audio coming out of the pads but thats just boring becau­se its always the same and we want to go further like trans­for­ming audio into midi mes­sa­ges, and we found the right tool for it, its cal­led  “KTDrum­Trig­ger” and he trans­forms the audio sig­nal into midi notes, we can use this midi notes insi­de a sequen­cer pro­gram to con­trol any kind of ins­tru­ment (either VSTI or some other stuff), in our case we use the drum pads to con­trol “Bat­tery” and thats it ins­tant fun.

The­re are some other links and some other ide­as for drum pads. This “one“uses ardu­nio as a sour­ce for the imput signal.

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