The city is too noisy, so let the plants sing for you

There are too many noises in the city, one after another electric drills, unprepared truck horns, flowing car horns… so that we sometimes yearn for nature and wear headphones to listen to the gurgling water and deep forest birdsong in the white noise album. Ingenious designers want to create more pleasant sounds by artificial means.

"PlantWave" is such a project. In addition to improving air quality and eliminating some noise, trees still have a chance to "sing their voices."

▲ Picture from: Fast Company

In a recently opened park in the Boston Harbor District, there are four trees connected to the PlantWave device—three sassafras and one maple tree. To make them open their voices, there are several steps: the equipment is equipped with flutes, bells, bells and other sound samples; trees produce natural electrical activity due to changes in water content; sensors measure natural electrical activity; the system converts these data through algorithms Make a sound sample and play it out.

▲ Boston Seaport District.

Joe Patitucci, the inventor of PlantWave, said:

We are designing musical instruments for plants. Every note you hear from PlantWave is selected by plant data. This is real-time music streaming.

Visitors can choose to listen to the sound of each tree, or enjoy the full chorus of the four trees on Sunday afternoon. You may never hear the same concert, because these natural electrical activities change with time and seasons. Sometimes the trees just play a few notes or even remain silent, sometimes they are more active. When the trees are hibernating, PlantWave will play the early recordings.

Joe Patitucci believes that the PlantWave project provides a way for cities to more fully connect with nature:

Such a way of contact with trees gives people the opportunity to realize that trees are active creatures and helps people's minds to free themselves from daily stress.

The PlantWave system was briefly unveiled at a music festival, and the park in the Boston Seaport District was its first permanent stop. Joe Patitucci hopes that PlantWave can settle in more places in the future.

▲ Picture from: PlantWave official website

In addition, the home version of PlantWave is pre-sold on the official website for $299 each, allowing wireless connections from plants to mobile phones. Similar to the principle of the park system, PlantWave detects slight electrical changes in plants through two electrodes placed on the leaves, and these changes will be converted into pitch information for playing musical instruments.

▲ Picture from: PlantWave official website

In contrast, the "Music of the Plants" project in the Damanhur community in Italy has a longer history. A team of scientists, doctors and artists has been focusing on plant propagation since 1976. They released the first plant music CD in 1980 and launched the "Bamboo" device in 2018.

▲ Picture from: Music of the Plants official website

Bamboo is attached to the plant through two probes, one probe is attached to the leaf, and the other probe is inserted into the soil through a metal rod close to the root of the plant, monitoring the instantaneous resistance, sensing electromagnetic signals, and converting it into music. Plants have different health status and environment, and their excitement will be different. You can choose organs, brass pipes and other different instruments to play their heart songs. These music may be a kind of "quantified self" for plants.

▲ Picture from: Music of the Plants official website

Studies have shown that plants communicate with each other through changes in electrical conductivity. Each plant has a unique "pulse". Until now, humans have not been able to fully understand this change. But capturing them with electronic components and "translating" them into music has become common. In fact, some plants can simply realize that the sound produced by the device is the result of their electrical activity. In the future, plants may be able to consciously control the device to create a real form of communication with humans.

▲ Picture from: Music of the Plants official website

The communications giant AT&T is also doing something similar with a similar concept. It has teamed up with Made Music Studio to develop an acoustically enhanced public space near the headquarters. This space, called AT&T Discovery District , covers an area of ​​2.4 acres and is located in downtown Dallas, once a deserted office area.

There are 130 speakers placed around the space. These speakers have been programmed to generate random sounds and play music that fits the current state. Accompanied by the sound of water, bells and the calls of birds in the area, they present different degrees at different times of the day. Calm or lively style.

▲ Picture from: AT&T Discovery District official website

In other words, in this space, you can get rid of the regular noise of the city center and experience the sound that has been carefully planned. The focus of Made Music Studio's design is to take something close to silence in the city, and then use it as a canvas to create more imaginative music. AT&T Discovery District officially stated:

Although the products and amenities here are technology-driven, they are always people-oriented, allowing us to understand how technology drives human thought, creativity and connection.

Grapes are not the only fruit.

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