Desmond Dodecahedron has the craziest way of celebrating the season I’ve seen this year: just build a giant Christmas tree from LEGOs, then use visual programming environment Max/MSP and some custom electronics to trigger tunes. Desmond writes:

Once I discovered that the word “advent” was actually an abbreviation of “audio event” and the fact that we have had lots of snow in London – I decided to create this Christmas Carol note filtering tree. (in this case it is actually a midi event tree – but you get the general idea). Each pitch class of a Carol i.e. all the Ds or all the Fs are allocated to a Lego door. When the door is opened, a midi file is played and the notes are sent to a vst synth in a Max Patch. The doors have small magnets which trigger a reed switch. I built a couple of resistor ladder multiplexers so that I could use nine doors with just 3 analogue ins of a Make Controller. This device could be used as a sophisticated “Name that Tune” device – fun for all the family – if that’s what your family considers to be fun – unlike my own. Keep up the good work with CDM – and a festive maximum to all your readers – Des

So, spread the love to someone you know and care about who hasn’t heard of Max/MSP or physical computing – they won’t be hard to find. I’m sure some of them will find it fully fun and festive! (“Do they know Max/MSP at all?”)

Hmmm… I hear some faux Band Aid lyrics coming on.

It’s visual programming, there’s no need to be afraid
At holiday times, we banish light and we patch in the shade

And in our world of plenty, we can spread a smile of joy!
Throw your arms around the world; it’s geekster time

Geek the world
Let them know how to code and patch and program synths and
Geek the world

Sorry, I’m going to blame the decongestant I’m on; my family’s dog is looking at me funny so I’ll take that as a cue to stop.