Category Archives: Example Projects

Gas Sensor Sonification System

In this investigation, different gas sensors were used with Arduino and Pure Data (Pd), a visual programming language for computer sounds and other multimedia works, to output different noises through the Modular-Muse (mm) Library, an interface developed by Jiffer Harriman specifically for the creation and development of tones. Hydrogen Gas (H2), Alcohol Gas, Carbon Monoxide (CO), and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) sensors were all used to output these various sounds.
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This system provided a different way of knowing the values of the different gas sensors. Each one has a different range that means different things. By creating a different sound for safe, moderate danger and dangerous, the system gives immediate auditory feedback with sound that doesn’t require looking at a display or interpreting a value.
This project was created as part of the CU Science Discovery Research Experience.

Musical Weather Station

Using this weather station the Musical Weather Station played sounds based on the current conditions. The motivation behind this system is to create a way to determine the weather conditions without having to look at a display, instead you can “hear” the weather.

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The sensors include an anemometer (wind speed), rain sensor, humidity, temperature and light sensors.

Both the anemometer and rain sensors act as switches so they could be used directly with the digital inputs on the Sound Clippys Board. By counting how many times the anemometer toggled in a second the wind speed can be determined. Similarly by counting how many times the rain sensor toggled the amount of rainfall can be determined.

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The other sensors all hooked into the analog inputs on the Sound Clippys Board.


The patch would play simple sounds in a sequence, with each sensor being sonified in the following order:

light, wind, rain, humidity, temperature

Delays were used to create this basic sequence.

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This project was created as part of the CU Science Discovery Research Experience.



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The GuiSam is a glove based “air guitar” instrument. It uses eight switches (four on each hand) and a distance sensor. Playing it is similar to a guitar, the left hand determines the chord and the right hand triggers the notes.


The left hand determines what kind of chord will be played, i.e. major, minor, etc. While the right hand controls which notes are played of the chord. Finally the distance sensor is mounted to the right hand determines the root of the chord (i.e. A, Bb, etc.)

It uses the modular-muse plucked string model and the overdrive effect to sound like an electric guitar.

This sound sample uses that same modular-muse string model through the overdrive effect:

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Here is an early prototype:

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This project was created as part of the CU Science Discovery Research Experience.



Musical Carrots

Using four carrots connected to the analog inputs on the clippy board, I was able to create a connection through the carrots by touching the carrots with my bare hands. The change in voltage was very slight, but I was able to use Pure Data in order to create a filter that would only trigger when a voltage change of 0.001 was detected. This filter was required because of the rather high resistance of the carrots. There were only four analog inputs available, so in the future I may try using multiple boards to have a broader range of sounds to use.

Here is a picture of my project:


Musical Painting

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In my project I used a painting I found in a thrift shop to and incorporated music into visual arts. I ran copper tape along the front of the painting and cut slits in the canvas. Then, I ran wires along the back and passed them through the canvas so that when you pressed down on the slit, the circuit would close, and the painting would make a sound. Some of the sounds I included were rain and ocean sounds in the blue, and fire and explosion sounds in the warmer colored areas.

Musical yoyo

I created a musical Yo Yo. It wasn’t my original idea but it worked out, I used a Proximity sensor, Sound board, and some “sound clippys” . I took the Proximity sensor and taped it to the ground, then proceeded to Yo Yo over the Proximity Sensor, i’m not gonna lie, it was pretty snazzy.  Over all it was a fun project, and I did learn a thing or two about computers and Modular-muse. This was a great year and i’d like to thanks Mr. Haraman for being a part of the music focus class.


Using sound clippys and Pd I was able to crate a pair of shoes that would play a sound when the bottom touched a surface. The shoes had switches on the bottom so when you walked the switches would close and Pd would play a sound.


Sound Floor

The sound floor is a mat made out of cardboard, with a pair of tap shoes acting as a ground. I attached an clippy board to the corner of the cardboard – the board was then connected to a computer – and hooked up some wires to it using alligator clips, ran those wires underneath the mat, then poked the ends up through it and covered them with copper tape to create a larger conductive surface.  I used more wire to connect the conductive metal surface on the bottom of the tap shoes to the clippy board to act as a ground, so when the metal hit the copper tape it would send a signal to the computer to play a sound in PD.  There are currently only four different connection points on the mat, limiting the number of sounds, so in the future I might add more, as well as clean up the design so the wiring makes more sense and is easier to manage, and so it looks more aesthetically pleasing and less like a cardboard box.




^^underneath wiring


Musical Monkey


I created a musical monkey named Sampson. Sampson consists of wires, bend sensors and an arduino board. The bend sensors are connected with zip ties to the arms of Sampson so when he flexes his muscles it makes a sound. That was the plan but I couldn’t find a way to make both arms works so I had to decide which sound I wanted more. And if I were to do this project again I would probably hook up bend sensors to all of his limbs and find a way to make them all work.

bendy glove

For my project, I built a glove that changes pitch through bend sensors in the finger. I used the pluck string model, changing frequencies when the fingers are bent. To play it, I move the fingers (each one plays an octave above the last) and can toggle on/off each finger with a clippy board. If I could change my project at all, I would remove more of the clippies (especially the ground) and replace them with sautered bare wires which would take up less space. I would also make my toggle wires more like switches (easier to use)IMG_1857