Via IEEE Spectrum
A few months ago I modified a vintage Casio synthesizer so that it could produce bizarre new sounds. At the same time, I built an interface that allowed an Arduino Mega microcontroller to control the keyboard. This was part of my scheme to use electronic assistance to solve my ongoing problem of not actually being able to play any instrument.
Initially I programmed the Mega simply to play a stored melody. I could have bought and retrofitted a MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) for such a task, but I used a Mega because I wanted greater flexibility. In particular, I wanted to be able to hook up different sensors and translate their readings into musical notes. So when the makers of the TeraRanger One—a US $140 range-finder sensor—sent me a sample unit, the wheels in my head started turning.
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