Musical Fireflies

(Top video = playtest with revised p5js sketch / Bottom Video = Testing the LED Matrix + P5js)


Musical Fireflies

Full Screen link  // P5js Editor link  

Description: Catch the fireflies on the screen to create a melody. As you catch them on the screen, they are caught from the “sky” and appear in real time in a mason jar (as illuminated LEDs). Originally envisioned as a chord building exercise and evolved into a Chance Aesthetics style Melody creation activity.

Once you’ve collected them, you can release them back into the sky by clicking on “release fireflies” button. When clicked, all the caught “fireflies” in the mason jar are released back into they sky (turning off the LEDs/resetting the LED matrix).

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thinking about firefly behavior

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2 of the biggest pieces of consistent feedback I’ve received is how to mirror the digital objects to the physical and how to translate/program more natural firefly behavior. The image above is from a really beautiful study called “Studies on the Flash Communication System in Photinus Fireflies” by James E. Llyod [Museum of Zoology/University of Michigan]. The illustration visualized different blinking pattern pathways described later in this post ❤ Hope to keep thinking on how to best animate the Big Dipper Firefly.

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