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Bicrophonics Practical Workshops

The overall aim of these sessions is to teach, facilitate and inspire students in the practical making of bicrophonic works.

Bicrophonics means sound and music made by the journey you take, played with the space that you move through. It was discovered and is being developed using bicycles. However, its system is also being used and developed within other strands such as sonic kayak and sonic walking projects.

Bicrophonics is about the mobility of sound, experienced and shared within a moving space, free of headphones and free of the internet.Please check outlines of the workshop series below. Details of equipment/materials/outfits to bring will be posted 2 weeks before each class. Note also that it is assumed all students will attend the entire series as well as the accompanying theoretical series. Overall aim is that students will be introduced to the sonic bike, be shown how to build the bicrophonics box, how to make maps of zones so that movement in and out of each zone will cause specific sounds to play in specific ways, to consider portable sound systems, their power v. their cost v. their frequency range v. their sonic output, to be taught how to build sensors on bikes that will enable the cyclist to play and make sounds, not just trigger them, to reconsider/challenge the content of compositions, and how to make them for moving spaces and moving audiences.

Some basic understanding of audio editing is expected but there will also be classes in Pure Data which will be the sound synthesis environment we will work in on the Raspberry Pi2. We will work collectively, individually and in groups. We will share knowledge and ideas and use free/ open-source software where possible. We will present the results of our experiments to each other as we proceed.

There will also be one to one tutorials once students have got going on their solo or group projects. Our limits will only be our imaginations although equipment availability will count. There will also be an encouraged potential to build/redesign extraordinary new bicycles.

We will together make a performance of our experiments at the end of the semester,( Sat July 22/23 rd ..tbc)
This could be one large scenario made of many individual works or a series of discrete activities happening
all over the city.

Seminar details:

Seminar details
Weekday/ Time:
Wednesday/ 10 - 12h or 10 - 13h (see timetable below!)
Time span:
27.04.2016 - 20.07.2016
Mostly E-N 523/524 (see timetable)
Kaffe Matthews / David Runge
Event type:
Event number:
3135 L 786
Modul AKT-9 a/b/c (Musikinformatik und Medienkunst)
Benotung PäS oder Leistungsschein: 
Referat / schriftliche Ausarbeitung. Teilnahmeschein: Referat
ISIS-Anmeldung erforderlich:


Registration: Registration for the seminar is done via a mailing list.

Below "Subscribing to Ak-matthews.bikepraxis" insert your mail address and full name (Attention: All subscribers without a full name will be ignored!) and optionally a password.

Attention: Only the first 20 registrations will be confirmed. Showing up at the first dates is nonetheless recommended (even if you have not been confirmed), as usually some students will choose something else, making room for others.

Information: Further information about the correct use of a mailing list can be obtained from the mailman wiki.


26.04.2016 (10:00 - 13:00) - in E-N 324: An introduction to the physical practice of bicrophonics p1.GPS, stereo audio moving through public space, the sonic bike box, mapping, sounds and mapping, walking
and taking a bike ride locally, listening.
Making pieces for local testing. If possible, please bring bicycles and any portable sound systems.

04.05.2016 (10:00 - 13:00): An introduction to the physical practice of bicrophonics p2.
We will build 3 sonic bike boxes. We will then use them in more outdoor experiments. We will discuss and
reconsider audio content and how to make compositions for moving spaces and moving audiences. Again,
please bring bicycles and any portable sound systems.

10.05.2016 (10:00 - 12:00) in E-N324: Pd. (with David and KM). An introduction to Pd as the sound environment for audio processing within the bicrophonics system. Please bring laptop with Pd vanilla installed and functioning. Also Raspberry Pi2, microcontrollers if you have them.

18.05.2016 (10:00 - 12:00): Pd(with David and KM) A follow up to session 3. Pd introduction with addition of sensehat, microcontrollers/arduinos to interface on the bike. Pd on the Raspberry Pi2. Group/solo work with Pd and bicrophonics boxes.

25.05.2016 (10:00 - 13:00, 14:00 - 17:00): Bicycle as Instrument (with Sukander Katardinata). Interaction.  An extraordinary workshop in sensor building for bicrophonic practices with widely skilled interactive engineer, coder and musician Sukander Kartadinata (http://www.glui.de/wp/)
Also an active cyclist and member of the BRI, Sukander will teach and guide us through a practical exploration and the making of different sensors to attach on bicycles for audio interaction. Our aim will be to turn bicycles into instruments to be played by the cyclist. There will be a follow up session to this workshop mid June. Date tbc.

01.06.2016 (10:00 - 12:00):  Group Tutorials.
Individual and group tutorials slots with KM. Times to be arranged.

08.06.2016 (10:00 - 13:00):  Bicycle as Instrument (with Sukander Kartadinata). Interaction Follow Up. A follow up session with Sukander in sensor applications. Details to follow.

15.06.2016 (10:00 - 12:00): Group Tutorials.
Individual and group tutorials slots with KM. Times to be arranged.

29.06.2016 (10:00 - 12:00): Group Seminar.
Informal sharings of works ideas design built so far. To consider a group performance in Berlin 22 July.

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