16 November 2006

I want one of these NOW!

I know this story is a couple of days old but this is very possibly the greatest scientific advance of all time.
Engineers in Australia have developed a new T-shirt which enables the wearer to play air guitar and create real noise in the process. Richard Helmer and a team of researchers at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia's national science agency, fashioned the "wearable instrument shirt" out of an ordinary T-shirt fitted with an array of sensors.

The built-in technologies measure the movements of the wearer, allowing them to "play" by moving one hand to mimic guitar chord patterns and using the other to pluck virtual strings. The shirt is hooked up to a computer that is able to read the signals and turn them into guitar sounds. The researchers say it allows anyone to thrash out their impressions of Led Zeppelin without ever picking up a real guitar.

"It's an easy-to-use virtual instrument that allows real-time music making, even by players without significant musical or computing skills. It allows you to jump around, and the sound generated is just like an original MP3," said Dr Helmer.

Anything that enhances the air guitar experience surely deserves the Nobel prize - the Nobel prize for RAWK N ROLL!

14 comments:

Pete said...

jams

We in Oz are truely patriotic about our inventions. First the didjeridoo, the wobble-board (remember Rolf Harris?) and now this!

Pete

BTW - While others invented trivial things like the wheel, or jet engines, we invented the WINE CASK :D

jams o donnell said...

test

jams o donnell said...

Pete. Harris is a giant of the rock scene. His Stairway to Heaven is definitive.

Ever since Yahoo Serious split the beer atopm, aussie scentists have been at the cutting edge or research - the Daewin stubby is a case in point. One day I am sure they will come up with edible Vegemite!

I jest of course. I dont think anything could make Vegemite edible!!

elasticwaistbandlady said...

Ha Ha! You referenced Yahoo Serious on your blog! I, myself, am guilty of watching Young Einstein more than once in my wily youth.

Now, this invention is sure to bring greater joy to playing with yourself. A one man band with one man's hand, if you will.

jams o donnell said...

I am a man of many references, even Yahoo Serious! It is a wondrous invention: of course we me like nothing more to play with ourselves, though for the sake of decency I will stress that the instrument in question here is the air guitar and not the trouser trumpet or pocket piccolo!

elasticwaistbandlady said...

Here's the deal, I can tap perfect rhythm to "Smoke On The Water", and CCR's Greatest Hits on the steering wheel with my fingers, I can also thump my belly for some decent bass lines. Between you and your air guitar, we can conquer the classic rock world!

jams o donnell said...

Exceelllent (in Monty Burns voice) Soon they will worship us, MWUAHAHAHAHAHA

elasticwaistbandlady said...

We need to bring mullets and redwine on board though for a fuller sound. Maybe we'll strike it rich, and they both have kazoo or tambourine skills! All that's missing is a cowbell player now.

jams o donnell said...

It is good to see you didnt think to use synths and samples to get the sound!

mullet said...

i have no musical skills at all, elastic! I'll just be a groupie.

Steve Bates said...

One of my neighbors is a music therapist, and appears to have loads of Orff instruments. Maybe she would join our band...

I think I'd find the T-shirt unsatisfying. A goodly portion of the pleasure I experience when playing an instrument (I play several; my gravatar picture shows me tuning a harpsichord before a performance) is tactile. Take that away, divorce the sound of that earth-shaking bass (for example) from the physical sensation of making it happen, and it just wouldn't be the same. I've no principled objection to it; I just prefer a more hands-on approach.

jams o donnell said...

Okay mullets..you can score the coke... and the dandelion and burdock!

I am being very tongue in cheek here Steve. There is nothing like air guitar when nobody's looking. On the other hand I have virtually no musical talent (I bow to those who do) apart from being able to play three chords. I would say there is no future in playng three chords and writing smutty songs.. HOLD ON WHY AM I NOT A STAR!!!!

Steve Bates said...

jams, instead of country music's "three chords and the truth", you could be the purveyor of "three chords and uncouth". Or "three chords and Dr. Ruth". Smut doesn't need musical sophistication!

If I play guitar at all, it has to be air guitar; I can't play the real thing, dammit. Keyboards and woodwinds, sure; guitar, nope, no way.

I don't know about this notion of musical talent. I had a small-time local musical career for about 25 years before my hands started giving me grief, and in all that time, I never could decide if I had talent or not. (Most full-time pro musicians I know feel the same way... they have confidence enough to step on a stage, and enough doubts not to be conceited about it.) I had fun, though, and audiences seemed to like it, so who cares if I had talent. If you want to play, just play; never mind the self-appointed critics!

jams o donnell said...

I am sure your audience appreciated your music Steve, You plated well and they came away feeling glad they went to see you play. THat is the most important thing.

I might try and pick up the guitar (I may get the not wife's restrung so I can play it left handed) but my guitar playing and my vocal talents will send children screaming for their mothers skirt tails!