Digital Media: FEUP student awarded in Sweden

Regarding the Music Tech Fest Scandinavia 2015, which took place on the 29th and 30th of May, in Sweden.

A project developed by Horácio Tomé Marques, a student at the Engineering College of the University of Porto (FEUP), of the Doctoral Program in Digital Media, UT Austin Portugal, was one of the winners of this year’s edition of the MusicBricks Incubation Awards, delivered last May, in Sweden, during the Music Tech Fest Scandinavia 2015.

The FindingSomething SoundingBonding project, created and produced by Horácio Tomé Marques, Francisco Marques Teixeira and Fanny Fazakas (Hungary) at Hackathon – one of the existing modalities at the Scandinavian festival – allowed them to stamp a Blue Vinyl Award, after having created and developed this project within 24 hours, respecting a series of parameters linked to the MusicBricks structure.

The jury surrendered to the audiovisual performance piece for two actors who expose a narrative conceptually anchored in an inter-relational event between two human beings (a kind of game based on provocation / perception, with gestures, body expression, reception / perception / brain reaction/ iteration as ingredients). In terms of processes and technologies, Horácio Tomé Marques’ project is based on gestures / movements and electrical potentials of the brain, where one participant uses several R-IoT gesture / movement sensors (IRCAM) and the other uses a brain-computer interface (Emotiv).

These interfaces (BCI – Brain Computer Interface) are devices that allow to capture the electrical phenomena of the brain and, supported by specialized software, to transcode them into discrete (digital) data. These can, in turn, after treatment – filtering, statistics, etc. – be used to denote (passive systems) phenomena such as emotions, or to control (active systems) events or mechanisms. They are, for example, an emerging technology in games, where they have served as actuators (game control). In other words, they allow you to play with impulses generated in the brain, replacing (or complementing), for example, joysticks.

The doctoral research of Horácio Tomé Marques, Music, Reason and / or Emotion, is based on a multidisciplinary project that proposes representations – eg, visual, sound, multi-sensory narratives – in real-time analysis of electrical phenomena of the brain, through the use of brain-computer interfaces (BCI). It implements innovative approaches to the representation of the action / perception / reaction processes, especially the proportional ratio, between reason and emotion in the context of the performing arts, especially music. It is an artistic research project, but strongly based on frameworks of theoretical reference and experiences in the areas of neuroscience, neurotechnology and computer science.

The Porto researcher’s project was presented and awarded during the Music Tech Fest Scandinavia 2015, which took place on the 29th and 30th of May, in Sweden. Following this winning performance, the PhD student at FEUP was invited to participate and present, together with his colleagues, the development of the project at the next Music Tech Fest, which will take place in September, in the city of Ljubljana, Slovenia.

About MusicBricks

The MusicBricks incubation awards are incentives for the continuity of research and development, configured by grants of 3000 euros that reward innovative, well-founded projects, which show a research history and which have a clear potential for future evolution and will have an effective impact on fields of arts, science and technology.


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