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Other Work

University Software Work

Work completed during my BE at Massey University.

MATLAB Synthesizer - October 2008

This was a university assignment to create an additive/wavetable and a subtractive synthesizer in MATLAB and/or Simulink. My one is pure MATLAB, spread over several m-files. It's a subtractive synth with a little bit of filtering, and a wavetable synth with some pre-recorded sounds. The possible effects are flange and echo. This site helped me for some information on DSP in MATLAB.

The wavetable synth is horrible sounding. Actually it's all pretty horrible sounding but the code is pretty neat and well commented, I think. It was certainly a mission to do. There's some documentation in the main zip file with full information in it, although it's just the documentation I did for the assignment submission.

If you have MATLAB, you can download and run it yourself. Just run "loadfile1" from MATLAB for the main music score. I couldn't find any existing systhesizer implementations on the internet so it may be useful to someone.

Download all related files (m-files, .wavs etc.) in a zip: DOWNLOAD
Download audio file of main score output: DOWNLOAD

The music score is a simple original thing I wrote just for the assignment. The sheet music can be seen at the end of the documentation file.

Fish Bubbles - August 2008

Fish Bubbles is an interactive music-creation game I made along with Kristian Erikson at Massey University in August 2008. 

We had a two-week assignment to create a program which used ChucK, Processing and control with a Nintendo Wii remote.

Chuck controls the audio, Processing (based on Java) the main program, and an open-source program called DarwiinRemote is used for the wiimote control. We used a modified version called DarwiinOSC which allows the wiimote to send OSC commands to a program.

If you're running Mac OSX, you can run it too!.. with a bit of setup beforehand. You'll need to be a fairly advnced user. You'll need to get Processing, ChucK and DarwiinOSC first, all of which are free. With a bit of work the game could also be adapted for Windows - it's only darwiinOSC that isn't available there.

You then need to add some libraries to Processing, etc. as well. I've created a zip file with everything in it, along with instructions for installing and running the extra libraries. The libraries are OSCP5 from here and the GIF Animation Library from here. Background images are various Creative Commons images from flickr.

YouTube video of gameplay (no sound).


Rise of the Colossus - May 2008 - Updated October 2009

Interactive Odyssey Interactive Odyssey

Made for a university assignment, with boids-algorithm based flocking and a giant colossus that eats the tiny pumpkins and grows large and evil. The boids algorithm is optimised for the ground-based boids by use of a quadtree. Written in XNA is essentially C#, but may be run on XBox as well as PC. 

The user may move the camera around and control THE COLOSSUS with the d-pad, which can beam up the small pumpkins if they don't run away fast enough. The small pumpkins flock to their large pumpkin leader, who moves randomly about the map.

The second screenshot is taken afer THE COLOSSUS has become larger and its light more evil, after absorbing some pumpkins. The code is terrible and not really meant for public consumption, but if you have XNA Game Studio this could be mildly useful for learning about flocking, lighting, terrain and such things. The basis of the quadtree code is originally from here. Some of the graphics code was given to us for the assignment and I'm not sure where it's from originally - I think the site may no longer exist. NOTE: I'm not sure why that effects error occasionally comes up on startup. Just run it again.

DOWNLOAD SOURCE CODE - music removed to save filesize.

The Paintbrush

Soundtrack for a student film, 2009.

This was a film project I worked on throughout 2009, winning an award for Best BE Multimedia Systems Engineering Project and a joint award for Favourite Presentation with student A. Tisch who created the visual content. A complete report is available, covering recommendations for and information on surround sound as well as details of the project itself.

This project involved the creation of audio for a short animated film of approximately nine minutes in duration entitled The Paintbrush, and encompassed all music and sound effects for the film. This included composition of an original soundtrack with subsequent recording, mixing and mastering into surround sound. Sound effects were recorded in four-channel surround sound, and all audio was mixed and mastered into surround (5.1) and stereo (2.0) tracks.

The project explored the possible improvement of realism, immersion and quality of surround sound in film and music applications. Through recording in four channels to match the surround speaker output, greater sense of 'being-there' was achieved for the audience, as well as more sense of space and clarity in audio by spreading sound effects and music more evenly across all speaker channels.

The possible use of convolution, a mathematical process useful for adding room sound to audio, was explored by writing a convolution application in MATLAB and recording impulse responses. Careful use of this successfully added the desired ambience to audio in the film.

Misconceptions and lack of standardisation in surround sound were explored in detail, and recommendations for future use have been made.

Student Anna Tisch created the film's animated video content. Some delays in video content creation caused delays in subsequent audio creation for those sections, but overall the collaboration was largely successful.

Bill Borman - Investigation into Audio and Surround Techniques via a Short Film. (PDF)

This YouTube video shows the film with the stereo mix. Video content is incomplete and therefore sound effects content does not cover the entire film.

Audio files are available of the final musical score:
5.1 surround sound mix. (flac)
Stereo mix. (mp3 @ -V 2 VBR)

A DVD ISO file is also available, containing the full video and 5.1 surround sound:
DVD image file. (DVD ISO)


Interactive Odyssey

I'm no professional designer, but I've been using Photoshop for more than a decade and and can make a reasonable effort where necessary.

To the right is a poster I designed for the Interactive Odyssey exhibition at Massey University in August 2008.

This website is also my own creation - though that might not be something to brag about!