The Chronsonome is a mod of the original Chronome designed by Owen Vallis which adds battery power, five ultrasonic rangefinders, and a 10DOF sensor to the Chronome. The mod requires 150$, new lasercut sides, and a weekend. Although the hardware has been tested to work, the software is still in development and requires optimization to be usable in an installation or performance environment. Please note this project is considered to be a hack or a mod of the Chronome and is not a stand alone project.
The Chronome Vanilla
The Chronome is a pressure sensitive Monome inspired human interface device that consists of 64 buttons laid out on a grid. The Chronome is Arduino Powered, features touch sensitivity, and full RGB capabilities for each of the 64 buttons.
Check out some high-res pictures of my Chronome Here.
Chromatic Cubes – A Chronsonome Game
My first project writing code for the Chronome was the creation of a game that can be played with up to 6 people or alone. Dubbed “Chromatic Cubes”, the game is played on the Chronsonome button board. The sound design and game mechanics are all coded using the ChucK programming language. On a macro level, it is a game of capturing the most cubes of your color. Watch a video of my playing the game with my wife.
The game cycles between two different states: ‘color select’ and ‘game board’. Starting in the color select mode, the board refreshes its LED colors one at a time, row by row, producing a semi-random spattering of colors on the device. The first player presses a button of their choice and the program determines primary color is most dominant within the LED. Next, the game places a semi-random number of colored squares on the ‘game board’. The placed squares are colored red, green or blue depending on which color was most dominant in the LED chosen. Sometimes the button contains two primary colors that have the same value; in this circumstance yellow will be the ‘chosen’ color. It is worth noting that it is practically impossible to play as yellow as these circumstances are too rare and hard to perceive. The intention is to add another element of unpredictability to the inherent game structure. Once a button is pressed and a color is chosen the Chronome changes state and enters the ‘game board’.
For the first round the game board will be blank. The player who just chose a color in the previous setp new presses another button of their choosing to claim a small section of the board surrounding the button pressed. The game will play back the claimed cubes as they are generated one at a time as a short melody as the turn comes to an end.
The game then returns to its first state, the ‘color select board’. The above process repeats with the next player who chooses their own color and claims their own cubes on the game board.
Players can write over other colors with their ‘game board’ choices but have no control over exactly which surrounding squares will be converted. As the game progresses, many factors make it harder and harder for the players to accurately choose colors in the ‘color select stage’. The color select board refreshes faster and faster each turn, the colors it produces are less and less similar to each other. In addition, psychological stress is added by the fact that the soundDesign becomes more and more distressing as the game progresses.
The game resets the board once all squares in the ‘game’ board are assigned a color. The program tallies how many of each color is present on the board, prints the results, resets the level, and clears the playing board.