“Hyperscratch ver. 7” by Ishii

  • ©Haruo Ishii



    Hyperscratch ver. 7

Program Title:

    SIGKids Community Outreach



    This interactive piece allows users to generate a variety of sounds and images as if they were using simple hand motions to paint a picture on a canvas of space or playing a piano with invisible keys. Instead of providing an interactive display through which users move in a prearranged, simulated environment, this piece offers a way to spend time more creatively in a physical space. 

    No visual interface or control device is used to operate Hyperscratch. Users simply stand before the screen and move their hands at face level to generate and change images and sounds. In other words, an invisible three dimensional interface allows manipulation of images and sounds. Infrared light is cast upon the moving hands, and highly sensitive video cameras capture the hand motion. The computer processes the motion to generate images, and a MIDI signal is sent to the digital sound sampler to generate sounds. 

    This piece is designed to provide users with uninhibited creative space and time. The only input devices are hands and bodies. Both hands can be used to create sounds and images, which allows users to move as if they are conducting a symphony or dancing. Such natural and free body movement is not possible through a mouse, a touch panel, or a space-input device. Thus Hyperscratch is not simply an input or pointing device but a unique environmental interface that mirrors the physical motion of the user.  

    Those who expect to experience some preconceived notion of virtual reality or an interactive video game will be disappointed. This piece affords users the freedom to create their own music and art on a large canvas, just like the abstract expressionist painters. 

ACM Digital Library Publication:

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