a robotic string instrument that can be controlled with software or physical sensors.
This project is currently an early-stage prototype. The x-axis can be controlled to draw the bow across the strings; future iterations are planned to include additional motors and controls to apply pressure to the string, tilt the instrument and depress individual strings. I'm using an electric violin for the initial prototype, but robow could be used on any bowable string instrument.
robow is not designed to be a robot that plays violin as a human would -- instead I am using the advantages that computational control affords to play an instrument in ways that humans cannot. This presents an opportunity to create a new kind of sound. What can a robot do with a bow that a human can't? What kinds of new sounds could it make and how would you write music for it? These are the kinds of questions that I will attempt to answer throughout the duration of this project.