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Road Theremin

Because driving is better with eerie music
  [vote for,

I really only have a vague idea about how theremins work, and don't know if the metal in a car would affect it, though I'm sure the principle could be modified to work.

Place theremin antennae on the road, and above it so when cars drive by it makes the oh so great theremin sound. There could be giant speakers next to them on the road, or it could transmit to your car stereo. Maybe a different type of sensor would be needed if the car would cause interference with the antennae.

notme, Mar 27 2003

How does a theremin work? http://www.phish.ne...theremin-works.html
Gather round, children, and I'll tell yer. [my face your, Oct 05 2004, last modified Oct 06 2004]


       I could have sworn I was spelling it right. I was suprised to only find 2 therAmin ideas here. freakin vowels.
notme, Mar 27 2003

       Very nice! It would be difficult to hear from the car, but could serenade roadside businesses. The cars across different lanes would produce strange and dissonant chords.   

       This could be done by stretching out transducers in tubes across a busy road - the sort used to monitor traffic already. The tubes could be adjusted for different effects.
bungston, Mar 27 2003

       Yes. . .transducers. Thats EXACTLY what I was thinking. . .verily.
notme, Mar 27 2003

       a theremin, named for its inventor leon theremin, was the first electronic musical instrument, and is the only instrument that is played without touching it. there are two antennae, one which controls pitch and one which controls volume. on the pitch antenna, the nearer you move your hand, the higher the pitch. on the volume antenna, the nearer you move your hand, the quieter.   

       it's an unearthly sound and very difficult to play well (i've tried).   

       listen to the beach boys' "good vibrations" and during the chorus "i'm pickin' up good vibrations", there's a high pitched, vibrato tone that goes from a low note to a high note and then to a note inbetween. that's a theremin.   

       also very popular in 50' pulp sci fi flicks.
urbanmatador, Mar 27 2003

       [bungston]//difficult to hear from the car// Why use a speaker? I think brodcasting on a new all-theremin-all-the-time radio station would be perfect.
Worldgineer, Mar 27 2003

       wonder of this would work with children in the playground.
po, Mar 27 2003

       Oh thats what a theremin is? I was wondering what I was talking about. . .
notme, Mar 27 2003

       after thinking about it, i'm not sure how well this would work. the theremin works because of the capacitance of the musician's hand. i believe that you can't play a theremin with something made of metal because the metal does not affect the field being generated aroudn the antenna.   

       perhaps if we placed magnets on all the cars...
urbanmatador, Mar 27 2003

       I must insist that while driving anywhere in Georgia the song Duellin' Banjos would cut in over the sound. You want eerie? I'll give you eerie.
sambwiches, Mar 27 2003

       It would have to work exactly like a theremin, just simulate it. You'd just need something on the road and above it to measure the distance to the car, and have a computer determine what it would sound like on a theremin.Making it focused to an area of maybe .5 sq.ft should make the note change a lot while the car passes through it.
notme, Mar 27 2003

       An in-car theremin would be better, one antennae near the wheel and one by the gearstick. You'd always be creating the soundtrack to your own road movie.
simeon, Mar 28 2003


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