Drummer’s third hand how robots are changing music forever

(ORDO NEWS) — Wanting to push the boundaries of what humans are capable of, in 2016 researchers at Georgia Tech developed a wearable robotic limb that turns ordinary drummers into three-armed cyborgs.

Interestingly, this hand does not just follow the movements of the drummer. It reacts to the music and complements what the drummer is already doing.

The hand tracks the music in the room and can improvise based on beats and rhythm. For example, if a person plays slowly, then the hand will immediately reflect the pace.

Also, the device is equipped with built-in accelerometers, so it is always aware of where it is relative to the drum set.

When the drummer moves to hit the hi-hat, the hand moves towards the plinth, and when the human switches to the snare drum, the robot plays the tom.

The motors in it make sure that the stick always remains parallel to the playing surface and always makes good contact with the drum or cymbal. Human motion capture technology allows the hand to move naturally, with intuitive gestures.

The inventor of the hand, Gil Weinberg , says that music is a great vehicle for experimenting with the very concept of the third hand, which will allow people to do things they can’t. The idea of ​​”shared control” is essentially the basis of the idea of ​​cyborgs, or augmented humans.

“If you have a robotic device that is part of your body, then your experience is completely different from what you experience when working next to a conventional robot,” Weinberg says.

The machine understands how you move and can improve or complement your actions. She becomes a part of you. Machines are not separated from people, they become part of them.”

Going forward, Weinberg wants to improve his robotic limbs so that they respond to brain activity and expand their scope, for example, in surgery or engineering.


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