20-07-2017 – H Y P E R T R O P E

First up, a bit of a step forward, I have named the piece I am working on. This is by no means a title for the work as a whole, but it will no doubt feature in it:


This name riffs on a few ideas which I’ll briefly outline: Most obviously zoetrope, which it is a continuation of. There is the suggestion that this thing is to the zoetrope what the hyper-cube (tesseract) is to the cube. Hypertropia is a condition which manifests in a misalignement of the eyes (or one pointing in a different direction), there is an analogue here with the visual distortions. Hyper’s etymology implies excessive or exceeding, while trope comes from Latin via Greek, meaning to turn, therefore a literal reading of the name could be said to mean ‘excessive turning’, which seems apt. There is some resonance with modern culture, it is a recurring device, almost like a meme, and stylised as it is above there is connotations of the vaporwave genre.

Having a name to give this creation feels good, it feels like a banner under which to gather my thoughts, I begin to see what is an isn’t part of it, and so on.

Yesterday I spent some time in the studio with Jack Walker (PHd student and Sound Design alumni), showing him where I’m at so far, allowing him to engage with the piece. We talked a lot about it, and I have been gathering my thoughts as to the next stages.

First its worth nothing I am still having issues with the Unity build. It works fine in editor, but there is no Pd parameter control in the builds. This is an issue. Joe from enzien audio has been helping but… We’ll see what happens.

Next stages

  • reduce the amount of control. Go from two controller to one. Achieve this by introducing ‘many to one’ mappings/ behaviour which influences the tuning of the radios.
  • introduce ‘levels’, transitions between different T R O P E S. The benefit of this is manifold: it will make it more game-like, so it becomes more identifiably across between instrument and game; this gives a chance to separate out some sounds and visuals, having some segments which are more low and quiet and slow than others. Jack pointed out one of the things he experienced was fatigue at the higher frequency sounds; this allows it to become more of a journey. There can be parts where everything is thrown at the player, but these are not the whole time
  • A mechanism whereby it can change itself over time.
  • Introduction of filters and more effects/ times when effects are needed (delay adds a nice lerp when changing speeds).
  • Do a fuck ton of reading.
  • Begin forming the writeup.

Thoughts on how to develop this in the future:

  • Making use of the Video Player components URL streaming function, to randomly select videos from, say, archive.org, and disrupt them and their sound.
  • developing both a custom controller, and a keyboard control scheme (its possible this should be developed for the submission, but I’m not thinking about it just now).
  • Further notes on this in previous blog post.
  • form it as an installation similar to that one seen in Stornaway.