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WORKSHOP BY LEXUS vol.9 welcomed artist Daito Manabe and LEGO® Education Sales & Marketing Manager Keisuke Eguchi. 30 guests were invited to participate out of a total 500 applicants. They tried their hand at creating instruments using LEGO® MINDSTORM® in the allocated time and then actually performed with their creations. WIRED Magazine’s Editor-in-Chief Kei Wakabayashi hosted the event.
Mr. Manabe began by introducing himself. In line with the event’s theme of using sensory technology to capture data and generating sound files, he introduced projects that he had worked on in the past, such as the “NIKE MUSIC SHOE” that incorporates sensor technology inside a sneaker, to allow it to double up as a musical instrument, as well as “scorelight”, which makes use of light sensors.
Next, Mr. Eguchi explained how for the last 30 years LEGO Education had been exploring ways of incorporating LEGO® into education, and that MINDSTORM®, introduced in this workshop, is a programming software that allows users to make moving robots by putting sensors and motors into LEGO® blocks. He went on to introduce the main activity of the workshop, explaining that today they would be using ultrasonic sensors, touch sensors and gyro-sensors to create musical instruments.
At this point, there was a short interval before the creation began. Guests split into 10 teams and each team was given an item that resembled either a drum, accordion or theremin, or a more obscure wheel that would play music as it rolled, asked to use MINDSTORM® to have a go at creating their own original music. Mr. Manabe used a color sensor to create his original instrument. Once they had finished, each team was given the opportunity to perform using their creations. At the end all the teams joined Mr. Manabe and Mr. Eguchi in a group recital before the workshop came to a close.
Guests were impressed that (with the colour sensor), the musical scale responded to different colors, and pointed out that although a little difficult, they had had a great time. Someone commented that it was equally fun designing both the look of the instrument and the sounds it created. Ms. Wakabayashi also said that the event had surpassed her own expectations. When asked his opinion about the workshop, Mr. Manabe commented that next time he would like to participate as a guest.
Guests were given the opportunity to try their hand at programming, and the event turned out to be an enjoyable and lively occasion, which stimulated guests’ creative intellect.
A detailed report on the event is available at WIRED.