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MIT Student Straps A Wii On His Guitar

Tired of changing effects pedals with his feet while performing with his band Vivian Darkbloom, MIT graduate student Rob Morris attached a Nintendo Wii remote to his guitar with a strip of Velcro.  Mapping acceleration and button press values from the Wii, Morris set his Mac to translate the movement of his guitar into a variety of audio effects. The result: a new hybrid instrument that you’ll have to see to believe!

How does it work? The Wii controller sends data to a laptop, so the computer knows where the instrument is positioned, and it knows when he’s pressing buttons on the Wiimote. Morris takes this information and smooths it out a bit with some computer code (MIT grad student, hello…); the data is then sent out of the computer through a firewire cable. This firewire cable then sends the data to his stompboxes and other effects. So, essentially, he’s controlling guitar effects by pressing Wii buttons and gesturing with the instrument, rather than pressing a pedal on the floor.

Check out the above video for a demonstration.


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