2019-06-05 (W) Electronic Wind Chimes EWC

The most important things for the Electronic Wind Chimes have been completed, and the few small issues can rest in this iteration. I want to wrap up this project and spend some time on other things while I plan for the next wave of the Electronic Wind Chimes. I learned a lot during this project, and it has been one of my longest projects to date, clocking in at nearly four months.

To finish up this version, I wanted to make a short video with a script spoken in my recording space and dubbed into a video that shows exactly what is happening. To make the script more fun, I decided it would have wordplay in every sentence and spent a day writing it. The punned words are in bold.
I want to start by saying that everything I knew about music, I picked up from Wikipedia.
I am an engineer by choice and I wouldn't trade it for anything so music has never been my forte.
When I started this project, the goal was to teach myself about music through math because that was a better base for me to build on. 
Most folks seem to learn the other way around where they scale a mountain of music and find the math under the rocks. 
The first thing to notice is that I played with hardware instead of doing all this on a computer or a mobile OS.
In retrospect, a touch screen would haven been a sound choice too, but I don't know.
There is just something about hardware than can tickle my interest better than virtual knobs or raw variables.
The second note is that I chose pseudo-random number generation so my brain wouldn't try to find patterns or recreate a song.
Pseudo-random numbers were a band-aid until I added the Arduino Entropy library.
Turns out though that there was a bit of a performance issue keeping up and psuedo-random is plenty good most of the time.
So now, instead of just beating out a number between  zero and one-twenty-seven, I limit the note-to-note transitions to the same proportions as the minor pentatonic scale.
I knew this was not going to produce pleasing music, nor was it supposed to, that's why I called it my Electronic Wind Chimes; wind chimes make acceptable sound, not good music.
As the project grew, I added more and more controls, like the limit and range knobs so the notes could only go so low and the range adjuster so it would only get so high.
When it was time, I added tempo control by running another cord to a potentiometer and adding a touch of programming.
Once I could meter out a note at a time, I focused on accompanying modules that could each play an instrument.
I have bad hearing, especially high frequency, so audio fidelity isn't my jam however I've used industrial serial protocols before, and MIDI is close to my aria of expertise and a sound module let me concentrate on the numbers.
This happy bridge between music and my job made everything possible.
I also like the LEGO case which balances out the seriousness of all the math, PCBs, and conductors inside.
It was better than just getting a case and painting it blue, or coral.
Anyway, I think it looks sweet.
Now that this iteration measures up to my expectations, I can start thinking about the next version, barring anything unforseen.
This started as a gentle way to get used to tweaking music on the fly and hearing the changes immediately and I figured there was no harm on easy mode.
I tried my best to jazz up this script, sorry about all the puns.

After the script, I made a Github repo to store the Arduino source code.

Electronic Wind Chimes code on Github.

The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1
Completed projects from year 2
Completed projects from year 3
Completed projects from year 4
Completed projects from year 5

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