Update: Currently under prototyping with AR for mobile phones.


The project involved a detailed study of all the areas of the Reality-Virtuality continuum, namely, Augmented Reality, Augmented Virtuality aka Mixed Reality and Virtual Reality. It also involved study of newer technologies like Merged Reality and Social VR.

I have shown the process and given some of the resources that helped me in my research in the project.
Concept Video
Steve Vai, one of the greatest guitarists of the world says that we should visualise ourselves in front of an audience when we practice an instrument. This thought is echoed by musicians around the world, beginner and professional.
Research made me talk to musicans and music shop owners, study  all the areas of the Reality-Virtuality continuum, namely, Augmented Reality, Augmented Virtuality aka Mixed Reality and Virtual Reality and read research papers on audience interaction with musicians. It also involved study of newer technologies like Merged Reality and Social VR.
Existing Technology
Mobile applications like Flowkey, Yousician and iReal Pro are available, but they are not immersive and they do not give relevant feedback. Using these applications becomes roughly equivalent to playing with a pre-recorded audio track or beat, which does not help in improvement.
VR / AR / MR
This article from recode helped me understand the differences between Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and Mixed Reality better. It assigns one key word for each area, further helping in remembering the differences.

Virtual Reality - "The key buzzword here is presence, shorthand for technology and content that can trick the brain into believing it is somewhere it’s not. When you flinch at a virtual dinosaur, or don’t want to step off an imaginary ledge, that’s presence at work."​​​​​​​
Augmented Reality - "The key term for AR is utility. The whole point of that ugly word, augmented, is that AR takes your view of the real world and adds digital information and/or data on top of it." 

Iron Man's interface on his helmet is an example of Augmented Reality. It moves with him and is stationary relative to him.
Mixed Reality - "The key term for mixed reality, or MR, is flexibility. It tries to combine the best aspects of both VR and AR, wrapped up in a marketable term that sounds marginally less geeky than its cousins.
In theory, mixed reality lets the user see the real world (like AR) while also seeing believable, virtual objects (like VR). And then it anchors those virtual objects to a point in real space, making it possible to treat them as "real," at least from the perspective of the person who can see the MR experience."

An example of this would be Pokémon Go where the Pokémon that are seen are anchored to one position, and do not move when we move.
Seeing the instrument when in a Virtual Environment was a problem that I had come across. And when I was pondering over this, Intel had just released Project Alloy.

When I had drawn up this persona, I came to the realisation that my entire brief came from a need, from a persona. This was redundancy. But sometimes, redundancy is good.
Consider a keyboardist. In the real world, this is how he looks.
In VR, he has the environment around him. This is immersive, but the instrument cannot be seen.
In AR, the environment is around his head. This enables him to see the instrument, but is not immersive enough.
The idea that I propose, in Mixed Reality, is a canvas of AR around the instrumentalist with all sides covered except for the bottom. This is where he can see the real world, and with it his instrument.
The areas that I could have concentrated on were:
1. Collaboration:
Playing together in VR environments

2. Performance:
Attending or conducting concerts from different locations.

3. Creation:
Creating music by uniting the software screen and all the creators, divided by location, in one VR environment. This reduces the back and forth communication and increases efficiency.

4. Education:
Learning instruments through videos is never as good as learning frmo a real tutor because of the nuances in the positions of the fingers, the techniques and so on. This could be brought down when there is a VR environment with free access to pause, move and explore.
All four areas required more than one person to be brought into the environment which requires huge amounts of power in the present scenario. Facebook has found a solution for this through Social VR.
All the four areas mentioned above have one aspect in common.


And that is what I decided to move forward with.

Thank you for your time...

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