Music Inspiration – Tangible Musical Table

Music Inspiration – Tangible Musical Table

With the percentage of individualism growing high in the society the need for group social activities is gaining importance. Entertainment and Music are found to be very effective tools for bringing people together. So in our project, through the design of a multi-user interactive tabletop for playing music, we have tried to utilize the synergistic amalgamation of the two – Entertainment and Music.

In this 8 months long project, my contribution started right from the ideation phase where we thought of 3 different methods to engage user in playing music. Two of the concepts “Music companion” & “wearable wrist player” are explained in the diagram below.

Upon evaluating various concepts we decided to work on Music Tantaliser (Later named as Music Inspiration). After finalizing the concept, we did a semantic modeling of various lifestyles to predict the features of next generation music device. The research helped us in deciding upon the properties to be incorporated in the product as per taste of the users. We also studied alternative ways of capturing the same for conjugating the backend technology with user experience of the product. We employed object based interaction using image recognition technology. Based on our research and recommendations we developed the system to interpret the fed kinesthetic movements. Towards the end, I along with my team mates developed and tested the 1:1 working model of actual tabletop.

It uses image processing by utilizing the MATLAB image processing library for manipulating music according to the position of respective blocks. Music Inspiration was a truly interdisciplinary project, requiring skills from the fields of Interaction design, Electronics & Computer Engineering and Psychology.


Different blocks represent different musical instruments. Blocks are shaped to Music related to particular instruments gets faster as we move from periphery to centre. Centre of a circle is the area of high energy, similar to the concept of radiation (sun, rangoli) where the centre is the main focal point. Colors are more like a feedback mechanism, changing with added instruments. Color changes from a dull hue to a bright one as all the blocks are added.

Relevant Publications

Ityam Vasal, Kumar Mayank, Suyog Deshpande, Pradeep Yammiyavar. User Aspiration Modeling to Predict Features for the Design of A New Group Interactive Music Device for the Young in India. Research into Design, Supporting Multiple Facets of Product Development, (2009), Research Publishing Singapore & Chennai, P 371-378,
ISBN 978-981-08-2277-4.

Ityam Vasal, Suyog Deshpande, K. Mayank, Pradeep Yammiyavar (2009). “ A tangible product to enhance real time user experience of enjoying music using kinaesthetic interactions” USID 2009 Bangalore. India.

Ityam Vasal, K. Mayank Suyog Deshpande, Pradeep Yammiyavar (2009). “ User aspiration modeling to predict features for the design of a new group interactive music device for the young in India” , International Conference of Research in Design, Indian Institute of Science BangaloreJan 2009 Bangalore. India.

Suyog Deshpande, Ityam Vasal, K. Mayank, (2009) “Design of an interactive table top device for culturally inspired collaborative mode of operation”, to be submitted in New Interfaces for Musical Expression 2010, Sydney.

Product Video Showcase

CAUE 2008 Pune,
ICORD 2009 at Indian Institute of Science Bangalore. January 2009
USID 2009 Bangalore. September 2009
IndiaHCI Mumbai March 2010 (Tentative)