June 16. I’ve officially decided on an idea: I will make an Arduino-controlled step sequencer, a device that uses sequences of notes to create melodies in perfect time.
So… why a step-sequencer? Check this out. I stumbled upon this site back in May and fell in love with the concept: lots of little buttons that, when pressed, cause beautiful music to play no matter what. What a great way to get people into music-making. No learning curve; instant and consistent fun; great music made every time.
I want to make these buttons physical and fun to press. I also want to choose a sound that isn’t tiring, that’s relaxing but won’t but you to sleep. So.. where do I start? Urban Reininger and Dave Morgan recommended I look into the Arduino micro controller to power the actual “instrument.” This seemed a little daunting, as I had very little knowledge in programming. Urban offered to teach me some basic Arduino coding and help me through the process. Thanks to him, I was able to get off the ground and make something functional by mid July:
Functional.. but far from finished. Pretty colors are nice and all, but this thing isn’t making music. It has something like 30 wires coming out of it, and I want the sequencer to have 8 times as many buttons. I’m not looking for headaches just getting this thing wired up; 1 out of ~250 wires not working seems very possible and very impossible to fix quickly. We’re gonna have to find a different way to go about this.