Pong That Beat

PingPong step sequencer

KADK 2008
  • ping pong
  • installation design
  • max/msp
  • processing
PongThatBeat is a musical pingpong table. It was built many years ago when I studied at the Royal Danish Design School, with two of my fellow students. It is a complex setup involving camera tracking, projection, and audio detection/generation. It is built around the concept of a step sequencer, which is a classical tool/interface for composing electronic music.

The ball is tracked by a camera above the table, and when the ball hits the table a contact microphone (piezo) detects the hit (and can distinguish it from other sounds, so it will only react to the sound of the ball).

A cell in the step sequencer is activated/deactivated when the ball hits the table and as long as the game is active, the music will evolve (we could also detect when the ball hit the ground!).