An interactive music table with tangible notes, that helps students to learn the notation of music.
interactive music table with tangible notes, that helps students to
learn the notation of music.
"Notput” is an interactive music table with tangible notes, that
combines all three senses of hearing, sight and touch to make learning
the classical notation of music for children and pupils more easy and
All basic clefs, note values and accidentals exist as single wood
elements. Whole, half, quarter and eighth notes differ not only in their
form, but also in their weight: Long note values are heavier than short
The table has two modes: A standard mode, where you can place notes
on the table in a playful and experimental way and explore the related
music outcome. And an excercise mode, where excercises and tutorials
sort by topic and difficulty have to be mastered.
To activate "Noteput”, simply put the treble clef on the table. As
soon as a note is placed on the staves, the respective sound is heard.
That serves as a kind of preview and an orientation while putting the
notes. If several notes are on the table, you can hit the play button
and listen to the notes in relation to each other and considering note
values. In addition to piano other instruments like guitar, flute,
vibraphon or e-piano can be chosen. It is also possible to play the
notes in a loop. That way it is easy to compare how the current note
sequence sounds like and how changes of the notation immediatly
influence the music.
The theoretical basis for the Output project was the theses, that a
combination of as much as many senses leads to the best learning
results. One’s motivation plays a key role in the process of learning
and remembering. With the fundamental approach of tangible notes Output
does not only want to reach music interested children and pupils, but
mostly those who have not yet enjoyed music lessons and have thought of
learning the notation as a burden.
As proof of concept we built and programmed a functional prototype of
the table with slightly reduced functions. All elements were cut out of
thin wood plates, weighted differently with lead balls and painted
black matte. The technical part was done with the visual programming
language vvvv and the so-called Fiducial Marker. Each object has a
unique marker at its bottom, which is tracked with a camera placed
inside the table. The software recognizes the marker and is therefore
able to define which note with what note value is at what position on
the staves. With this data a vvvv-patch computes the respective note
sequence and sends it via MIDI to a sound software, which then can play
these singals for different instruments.
Some pictures of the prototype:
The vvvv-patch tracking the positions of the notes and computing the
respective note sequence.