Mapping and Digital Instruments (2003-2008)


The notion of “mapping” in the context of digital music performance takes on a variety of meanings related to associating of gestural action to sound result, which includes a perception-of-intentionality point of view, a parameter-association point of view as well as a music theoretic one when discussed in relation to musical composition and form. I’ve felt this issue to be overlooked and so I devoted a good deal of my dissertation work to discussion of mapping from several angles that incorporates aesthetic, mathematical, perceptual and systems-oriented views on the subject. With the purpose of moving towards a more holistic view on instrument design, the tangible outcomes of this work have included a psychophysical experiment and software tools for continuous control of high-dimensional spaces of sound parameters by appropriation of methods from computational geometry and geographic information systems (GIS) research.

Here is a demo of one of such tools that I use in various contexts such as my GREIS and FILTER systems:




Related writings:

Doug Van Nort, Marcelo Wanderley and Philippe Depalle, Mapping Control Structures for Sound Synthesis: Functional and Topological Perspectives , Computer Music Journal, 38(3), 6-22, 2014.

Doug Van Nort. Instrumental Listening: sonic gesture as design principle. Organised Sound 14(2):177-187, August 2009.

Doug Van Nort. Modular and Adaptive Control of Sound Processing, PhD Dissertation, 2010.

Doug Van Nort. 2 entries: “Mapping” and “Mapping, in Digital Musical Instruments”, in A Luciani and C Cadoz (ed.) Enaction and Enactive Interfaces: a Handbook of Terms, Enactive Systems Books, Grenoble, 2007.

Doug Van Nort and Marcelo Wanderley, Control Strategies for Navigation of Complex Sonic Spaces, in Proc. of the International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression 2007 (NIME-07), New York, NY, June 2007.

Doug Van Nort and Marcelo Wanderley, The LoM Mapping Toolbox for Max/Msp/Jitter, Proc. Of the 2006 International Computer Music Conference (ICMC 06), New Orleans, LA, Novermber, 2006.

Doug Van Nort and Marcelo Wanderley, Exploring the Effect of Mapping Trajectories on Musical Performance, in the International Conference of Sound and Music Computing (SMC 06), Marseille, France, May 18-20, 2006.

Doug Van Nort, Le Mappings Geometrique et Trajectoires Musicale, in L’interdisciplinarite dans les sciences et technologies de la musique colloquium, part of La Reunion 2006 de l’Association Francophone pour le Savoir (ACFAS), Montreal, QC, May 17, 2006.

Doug Van Nort, Marcelo M. Wanderley and Philippe Depalle. On the Choice of Mappings based on Geometric Properties. Proc. of the 2004 International Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression (NIME 04), Hamamatsu, Japan, June 3-5, 2004.