ToneMatrix: Your Time Waster of the Day

Posting will be a bit light this week as I work on the October (yes, October) issue of Games. While you’re pining away for want of G&TM content, you can wile away the hours with ToneMatrix. The developer describes it as a “simple sinewave synthesizer triggered by an ordinary 16step sequencer. Each triggered step causes a force on the underlaying wave-map, which makes it more cute.” It’s the work of Andre Michelle, and it’s flat-out amazing in its addictive simplicity. If he converts this to a mobile app, he’ll make a pot of money.


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About Thomas L. McDonald

Thomas L. McDonald writes about technology, theology, history, games, and shiny things. Details of his rather uneventful life as a professional writer and magazine editor can be found in the About tab.

  • victor

    Fortunately versions of this exist in both the App-space and the meat-space. Yamaha started down this road first with their Tenori-on instrument a few years back, now available in a handy Yamaha-licensed app for iPad. People fell in love with the interface, so it sparked a whole wave of MIDI controllers using the same matrix layout (the Monome being the open-source version). Clones of the Tenori-on are pretty common in the app store. Some apps, like 4Pockets Aurora studio, use the matrix layout as the backbone of their MIDI sequencing while others, like Retronym’s Tabletop feature a Tenori-on instrument as part of their larger collection of instruments.

    However, for the ultimate hardware matrix synth on a budget ($40), you probably can’t beat ThinkGeek’s Bliptronic 5000.

  • victor

    Oh, and one final bit of cool Tenori-on trivia: it was created by Toshio Iwai who has spent his entire career developing cool and whimsical sound toys. His collection of sound-toys for the Nintendo DS, “Electroplankton”, was really the first popular, touch-based sound “app” to see widespread release and still worth looking up today — the original cartridge was only available directly from Nintendo (yes, I have one :-) ), but you can download the individual toys from the Nintendo eShop for your DSi or 3DS.

  • Todd Neller

    Introducting the Jesus Loves Me Tonematrix:
    All melodic parts of Jesus Loves Me except the last phrase of the verse are represented at normal, double, or half speed. Enjoy finding the melodic fragments!

  • victor

    Berry nice!