Making Noise: Sound Art and Digital Media
UGS/CS 2050, Spring 2016

Instructor: Erik Brunvand, School of Computing
TA: Nina McCurdy, School of Computing

When: T-Th 2:00-3:20pm
Where: Merrill Engineering Building (MEB) 3105

Textbooks: Handmade Electronic Music: The Art of Hardware Hacking by Nicolas Collins
                   also Lights! Speed! Action! Fundamentals of Physical Programming for Programmers by Erik Brunvand
                   also our own CS/UGS 2050 Lab Manual (available on the Canvas page) by Erik Brunvand and Nina McCurdy

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What: Electronic technology is pervasive in our modern world but how it actually works can be a mystery to many people. In this class students will explore the fundamentals of electronic technology with a goal of increasing their “technological fluency.” This class does not assume any specific background in electronics or computer programming. Through hands-on labs and projects students will gain a fundamental understanding of how electronic things work and what are their capabilities and limitations. This will be explored in the context of making art and noise with electronic components, some of which will be built from scratch, and some of which will be discovered from existing cast-off or broken devices. This blending of arts and technology, sometimes called “circuit bending,” involves learning enough about technology to modify simple circuits (that were likely never intended to make noise) to make strange and unexpected sounds. The final project will be to design, build, program, and perform with an electronic musical (or at least noise-making) gizmo that has never previously existed.    

Beware that you've signed up for a very experimental course! I have a broad outline of the material in mind, but many of the details will be worked out as we go along. The schedule will almost certainly change as the semester progresses... 

The main site for this class in on Canvas. Here's a link to that site.