Internode brainwave powers music for Fringe


Computer music scientist SKot McDonald

Called Internode Powered by Brains, the free event kicks off at midday in Rundle Mall, when passersby will be invited to don a sensor-rich helmet that will turn their brain signals into music.

The brainchild of Australian computer music scientist SKot McDonald, the BrainWave helmet and software can read the electrical state of the human brain and convert it into unique pieces of music. "For instance, we can detect the user's level of calm, frustration, or excitement and thus vary the tempo, filter positions, or even the chords generated in the music," explained SKot.

"So a calm user might hear a slow tempo, with pleasing chords and an uncomplicated 'arpeggiation', whereas a frustrated, agitated user will hear a fast-paced piece with clashing chords and garish sounds."

Digital Marketing Manager Jane Orchard said the 'Internode Powered by Brains' event was a brilliant way for anyone to play with technology. "This will be a lot of fun," she said.

"We think it'll really tap into the mindset of folk during Mad March when they're out and about taking in all the festivities at our Node-sponsored events such as the Fringe and WOMADelaide."

"It came from the idea that Internode is powered by hundreds of brilliant people, so we wanted to celebrate the power of the human brain to make amazing thing happen - and in this case it's music!"

People can check out the Internode Powered by Brains event today in Rundle Mall, between 12pm and 3pm or from 4-7pm. Also, it will be repeated at WOMADelaide on Saturday, March 8, and Sunday, March 9.

The Internode Powered by Brains headset contains 14 channel ElectroEncephaloGram (EEG) sensors and a solid-state gyroscope, which is monitored by the BrainWave software to track the subject's physical and emotional state such as calmness, excitement, attentiveness, or anxiety.

Based on the raw voltage produced by each electrode, the BrainWave software uses the input to control rhythmic and melodic elements, creating a piece of music that is as unique as each individual's brainwaves.

Internode's Powered by Brains event for the Adelaide Fringe and WOMADelaide 2014 will appear on Twitter under the hashtag #poweredbybrains.

More Information:

Note to media: SKot McDonald will be at the Internode Powered by Brains stage in Rundle Mall (near Gawler Place) for today's event. To request an interview or for other media assistance, call John Harris on 08 8431 4000 or email [email protected].