Yes, Virginia, There Really is a Ford Car Part Musical Ensemble

It’s always fascinating to me how people hear, what they thing of as “real” or “authentic,” and what meaning they find in the things they listen to. Yesterday, we got a glimpse of a new car advertisement for Ford in the UK featuring instruments constructed from automobile components: Interview: Building a Musical Ensemble Out of Ford Focus Car Parts What you see on the screen, of course, is not literally what you hear — the TV ad and soundtrack are edited together, and this is a car ad, not a documentary. But quite a few readers (and even blogs elsewhere) …

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Pimp My Heart: A Car, a Subwoofer, a Laptop-Amplified Heart Monitor running Max/MSP

The “Heartbeat of America, Today’s Chevrolet” takes on new meaning. The Heartbeat Bass Booster project by Takehito Etani and David Tinapple involves one seriously pimped out Chevy Cavalier. Driving the project is a heart-shaped pendant with a heart sensor that clips to your finger or earlobe. Plug that into a PowerBook running Max/MSP, and your beating heart pumps out bass through the car’s subwoofer, while controlling the bpm rate of heart-themed music and driving an LCD, projector, and under-the-car LCDs, all integrated into the automobile. Good old-fashioned audio signal works the magic (since your heart is a kind of percussion …

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Acoustics on the Road: Phase Cancellation and Your Car Muffler

Two things most people don’t care to understand: physics and how the heck your car works. But you’re different. Why, you probably already know that phase cancellation occurs when a sound source is delayed slightly (by a real-world reflection, or in recording and mixing), so that two coherent waveforms of opposite phase are superimposes and cancel each other out. (Er, in plain english: one wave’s crests cancel out the other’s troughs and vice versa.) Now, did you know this principle is what keeps your car’s exhaust from making a racket? How Mufflers Work [Howstuffworks] Basically, the muffler is a chamber …

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