The first interface I created was a customized MIDI keyboard. It made me gush with excitement. But when I showed it to my friends, they were not quite as interested.
Users were unmotivated to use my laptop keyboard to play my favorite songs... they did not fit in the equation.
When designing PS4WheelDrive and SiriBeats, I chose objects users are comfortable with and sounds that spark a sense of belonging. I decided on a PS4 controller, a phone flashlight, and Siri audio clips.
Users felt more comfortable with, more valued by, the interfaces.
I wanted to ensure PS4WheelDrive had incredible affordance. Most users have never "driven" through a virtual sound map. So, I designed the interface to teach users it is analogous to real-world driving. The functionality is what users expect: They turn joysticks instead of a wheel and press buttons on a controller instead of on a dashboard.
I wanted to make SiriBeats super, mega accessible. The goal was for users to be able to pick up their phone flashlight and just start creating. Despite running the interface on my personal laptop, I discovered in user experience research that the fact users are holding the source of light in their own hands makes them feel like the interface is their space to create in.
With Siri's driving directions, talk show radio clips, and the occasional radio song, the audio components of PS4WheelDrive are as compelling as the abstract visuals.
For the audio, I used DS4OSC and MAX/MSP and for the visuals, I used Processing.
A SCREEN-RECORDED PERFORMANCE
headphones highly recommended — you'll see why.
(if using headphones, play on "half-volume." adjust if needed.)
SiriBeats is a HCI music interface I created using supervised learning (with the help of Wekinator) and MAX/MSP. Using my laptop's webcam, it tracks my phone's flashlight and accordingly adjusts the pitch, volume, and speed of a custom track I created.
Using programming language ChucK, I designed a personalized MIDI interface for my laptop keyboard that selects my favorite parts of a song. MyMIDI lets me string together the best seconds to create new lyrics and new beats.