2 03 2009



This paper is intended to introduce the system, which combines “BodySuit” and “RoboticMusic,” as well as its possibilities and its uses in an artistic application. “BodySuit” refers to a gesture controller in a Data Suit type. “RoboticMusic” refers to percussion robots, which are applied to a humanoid robot type. In this paper, I will discuss their aesthetics and the concept, as well as the idea of the “Extended Body”.


The system, which I introduce in this paper contains both a gesture controller and automated mechanical instruments at the same time. In this system, the Data Suit, “BodySuit” controls the Percussion Robots, “RoboticMusic” in real time. “BodySuit” doesn’t contain a hand-held controller. A performer, for example a dancer wears a suit. Gestures are transformed into electronic signals by sensors. “RoboticMusic” contains 5 robots that play different sorts of percussion instruments. The movement of the robots is based upon the gestures of the percussionist.

Working together with “BodySuit” and “RoboticMusic,” the idea behind the system is that a human body is augmented by electronic signals in order to be able to perform musical instruments interactively. This system was originally conceived in an art project to realize a performance/musical theater composition.

This paper is intended to introduce this system as well as the possibilities from my experiences in an artistic application.

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2 03 2009

Suguru Goto is a composer/performer, an inventor and a multimedia artist and he is considered one of the most innovative and the mouthpiece of a new generation of Japanese artists. He is highly connected to technical experimentation in the artistic field and to the extension of the existing potentialities in the relation man-machine. In his works the new technologies mix up in interactive installations and experimental performances; he is the one who invented the so called virtual music instruments, able to create an interface for the communication between human movements and the computer, where sound and video image are controlled by virtual music instruments in real-time through computers. Lately, he has been creating the robots, which perform acoustic instruments, and he is gradually constructing a robot orchestra.

He has been internationally active and has received numerous prizes and fellowships, such as Koussevitzky Prize, BSO fellowships, the first prize at the Marzena, Berliner Kompositionaufträge, a prize by the IMC International Rostrum of Composers in UNESCO, Paris, DIRECAM, French Cultural Minister, and so on. His works have been performed in major festivals, such as Resonaces/IRCAM, Sonar, CICV-Les Nuits Savoueuses, ICC, Electrofolie, Haus der Kultures der Welt – Haimat Kunst, ISEA2002, NIME 2004/2005/2006, Olhares-Outono, Ressonancias, Audiovisionen, Utopiales Festival, AV Festival, and Mixed Media Festival etc.

In 1995, his first opera “NADA (Media Opera)” was performed in Shauspielhaus, Berlin. At the same year, he moved to Paris in order to realize a project at IRCAM, Paris. In 1996, his “VirtualAERI” was given the first performance at Espace de projection, IRCAM. In 1998, he was invited to perform at Sonar, Barcelona. In 1999, he was invited to perform at ICC in Tokyo. In 2003, his concert was given at Pompidou Center, in Paris. In 2006, his “RoboticMusic” was commissioned by AV Festival in Newcastle, England and was enthusiastically received by the large public, as well as the mass medias. He has been producing computer music and researching at the group “Gestural Controller” in IRCAM, Paris since 1995. Lately, he has been working for Brass instrument robots with Artificial Mouth at IRCAM, as well.

Goto’s works have been shown in Canada, England, Germany, France, Italy, Portugal, ,Poland, Spain, Slovenia, Ukraine, Japan, and U.S.A. His works are published by “Edition Wandelweiser GmbH”(Germany). His “Giseion to Gousei” is recorded on CD, which is available from Akademie der Künste label (Germany) and his “Temps tressé III” from ALM Records (Japan).

Suguru Goto

82, rue Charles Nodier

93500 Pantin




1 03 2009



In 2005 an international, multi-disciplinary, inter-institutional group of researchers began a three-year research project that is attempting to use evolutionary and adaptive systems methodology (genetic algorithms, neural networks, etc…) to make an embodied robot that can exhibit creative behaviour by making marks or drawing (in the most general sense). The research is popularly known as the DrawBots Project. The research group is composed of computer and cognitive scientists, philosophers, artists, art theorists and historians. One outcome of the project will be a large-scale art installation of a group of DrawBots. Other outcomes will include the various research publications reflecting the vested interests of the group both as independent researchers and as a group.

There are a number of motivations for the project including the production of machine-created art and the exploration of whether it is possible to develop (minimally) creative artificial agents and the research has two, mutually dependent, contextual frameworks. One concerns methodologies for making an agent that has the potential for manifesting autonomous creative behaviour. The second concerns methodologies for recognising such behaviour. Another emphasis is attempting to place this work in an art historical context. Amongst the key concepts that the project is examining are: personality, autonomy, value, signature, purpose, novelty, embodiment, social context, environmental interaction, ownership and so on…

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28 02 2009

Paul Brown is an artist and writer who has specialised in art, science & technology since the late 1960s and in computational & generative art since the mid 1970s. His international exhibition record spans four decades and includes the creation of both permanent and temporary public artworks. He has participated in shows at major venues like the TATE, Victoria & Albert and ICA in the UK; the Adelaide Festival; ARCO in Spain and the Venice Biennale. His work is represented in public, corporate and private collections in Australia, Asia, Europe, Russia and the USA. He is currently (2005-08) visiting professor and artist-in-residence at the CCNR, University of Sussex where he is working on a project to evolve robots that can draw.


24 02 2009


The poem exists under extreme conditions in our time, taking its place in a medial and societal discourse where language has been enervated, if not exhausted, by neo-fascism, terrorism, fundamentalism, and global commerce. At the same time poetry itself, or formulaic language appropriating its name, has perhaps never been more ubiquitous, with virtual (networked) texts as well as affordable just in time, insty-printing and distribution, as well as monopolistic transnational publishing saturating every market segment.

Under such conditions it seems useful to consider the poem independent of the poet or the institutional and cultural construct of poetry. That is, to consider the poem as something of a stochastic process, fully non-deterministic and conjectural and, if not explicitly random, appearing so when encountered in the midst of overly-determined, exhausted, even hostile, regimes and discourses of the sorts mentioned above. The poem in isolation is always adaptive, mutative, generative, self-organizing. As such it shows itself to be well-posed in the mathematical sense, i.e., data-dependent and of a reasonable topology, despite what on first glance may seem its porosity.

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24 02 2009


Michael Joyce, USA, 1945, Professor of English and Media Studies, Vassar College, mijoyce(at) The New York Times termed Michael Joyce’s afternoon (1987) “the granddaddy of hypertext fictions” and he since has published numerous hypertext fictions on the web and on disk. Books include Moral Tales and Meditations: Technological Parables and Refractions, (2001), State University of New York Press and Othermindedness: the emergence of network culture (2000, University of Michigan Press. A print novella Was: annales nomadique /A novel of internet (2007) was published by Fiction Collective2. Recently he has been collaborating in multimedia work with LA visual artist Alexandra Grant.


22 02 2009


This paper chronicles the past five years of research and practice engaged in by the Trust Project Team, most recently working on site at the Stephen Hawking School for children and young people with complex multiple disabilities. TRUST seeks to offer young people with limited physical ability the tools with which to engage in rich 3d imaginative environments that encourage relaxation and healing. The project has to date been tested in various iterations in the Montefiore Hospital for Children (Bronx, New York), The CRC (Central Remedial Clinic Dublin), the KK Hospital for Children (with NTU Gamelab, Singapore) and the Stephen Hawking School, London. The haptic elements of the game and interaction design have been employed to great effect in the most recent iteration of our InterFACES Project as well. The results have been featured in the Science Museum (London) showcase on Future Games, and will soon be redesigned for more site specific installations.

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22 02 2009


Dr Brian Duffy, born 1971, Irish. Associate Senior Researcher, UEL. SMARTlab. brian(at)

Brian is co-PI of the Trust Project (with Goodman & Sudol). He is currently Researcher with SAP (France). He has been actively involved in research in many international academic and non-academic institutions throughout Europe in the fields of robotics, artificial intelligence and haptics for over 14 years. He was a Research Engineer at the Institut Eurecom, Sophia Antipolis, France. Previously, he worked with University College Dublin (UCD) & directed the Anthropos Group at Media Lab Europe, was a researcher for GMD, Germany and INSA de Lyon, France. Brian has a Masters of Engineering Science, a BS in Production Engineering, is a member of the IEEE, a Chartered Engineer, and holds the Eur.Ing qualification.


Mr Jeremi Sudol, born 1979, Polish. Researcher, Computer Vision, UEL. SMARTlab. jeremi(at)

Jeremi Sudol is interested in developing technologies that celebrate the human spirit. He’s been involved in a variety of projects in active technologies, experimental human-user interfaces, performing and visual arts, and artificial intelligence. As Co-PI on the Trust Project, he is researching sensors and multimodal interfaces for children’s interactions with games and technology devices. He has worked with us in Dublin, New York, Los Angeles, Singapore, and now on site In London for the Trust Project for complex multiple disability, on site at the Stephen Hawking School, East London.


Prof Lizbeth Goodman, American, born 1964, Director, UEL, SMARTlab, lizbeth(at)

Chair in Creative Technology Innovation, Director – MAGIC Gamelab & Innovation Centre, & Director of Studies for the UEL practice-based PhDs in Digital Media, Performance Technology & Informatics. Her main field of speciality is the creation of learning games developed WITH, not only for, people with disabilities and ‘non-standard gamers’. She is widely published, with many years of BBC experience, and is a performer/director and PI of projects for and with NESTA, BBC, Microsoft, Lego, Futurelab, SGI, the Wellcome, et al. She directs the GLAM (Games, Life and Media) Academy, making games for the 2012 games. She is series editor of Emergenc(i)es for MIT Press.


Mr James Brosnan, born 1974, Irish, Research Fellow in Assistive Technology Innovation, UEL, SMARTlab. james(at)

Author and activist in the domain of disability and widening participation through technology, and a key member of IBM’s user testing research lab, James Brosnan has worked as a journalist in the Forum of People with Disabilities Dublin, and has recently been made lead Journalist for the Centre for Independent Living in Dublin. James has traveled with the SMARTlab and has joined our major public panels at the UN, the Word Summit in Tunis, the USA et al, speaking for people with Cerebral Palsy about their needs. He is planning to enroll for graduate study upon completion of his book in progress for MIT.


Ms Jana Riedel . born 1976, German. Creative Content & Trust Project Manager, UEL, SMARTllab. jana(at)

Jana contributes her skills in media arts and digital editing technologies, as well as her talent as a filmmaker and documentary artist, to the work of the MAGIC team. Jana is responsible for the creation of the visual content and archiving of all the SMARTlab’s projects, and holds the ‘human memory’ of many of our largest and most complex (and successful) international collaborations She is dedicated to helping people of many different levels of ability to integrate those technologies into their working practices and lives. This lifelong interest makes her particularly well suited for her dual role as Project Manager of the Trust Project.


15 01 2009


Florian Grond, Austria 1975, research associate at the ZKM (Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe),, studied Chemistry in Graz, Leicester, Tübingen. Since 2001 he works at the ZKM. He works in science (non linear dynamics, system theory) and media art, Since 2001 several peer reviewed journal publications and art installations. He exhibited in Austria, Spain, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, Japan, US and Canada. His recent project at the ZKM focuses on the field of scientific sonification, which is part of his PhD “sonification of macromolecules” at Bielefeld University.


15 01 2009


We think that reality represents itself as a fragment or even exists as such. Etymologically the mathematical notion of a fractal shares similarities with the fragment. Whilst the fragment always represents a part of the whole, some fractals, namely space filling curves (SFCs), have the capacity to rearrange in an orderly manner everything that they map in lower dimensions. The Russian philosopher and mathematician Pawel Florenski (1919) linked his insights about SFCs very early with questions of image theory drawn from the fine arts. Interestingly, Kazimir Malevich (1919), also expressed similar ideas by referring to literature. Without explicitly drawing links with mathematics, Malevich was very much aware of the necessity to break forms when reducing the dimensionality of media, and came close to the notion of fractal dust. Some decades later, similar lines of thought are found in the work of Italo Calvino, more precisely in Six Memos for the Next Millennium (1985). Like Malevich, Calvino is unaware of the mathematical foundations mentioned by Florenski, and therefore approaches the topic intuitively.

In the first sections of this essay, I use SFCs as a metaphor for understanding text-image relations. This metaphor provides a framework that comprises apparently disparate positions, like the skeptical or deconstructive use of language, and conventional stylistic devices. The ability of SFCs to map high-dimensional content onto one dimension is of particular importance for modern computer science, where key issues include the parallelization of processes and the organization of complex content for quick access in databases. I recently took advantage of the SFC structure in order to develop methods in the field of scientific sonification (Grond, 2007), which I outline in the final section. Wherever SFCs are applied, their purpose is to mediate between sequential or linear processes and complex, high-dimensional realities. I describe the afore-mentioned examples from the arts and philosophy and link them with today’s use of SFCs in computer sciences and media arts, in order to illustrate our relations to media of different dimensions, that is to say, of differently represented realities.


After having studied Russian icons, Pawel Florenski wrote his essay “The Reversed Perspective” (1919), one of his best-known writings outside Russia. In this essay he investigates whether or not there is a true or at least particularly valid way to grasp reality in an image. He seeks to prove that the reversed perspective is not only able to capture reality, but does so even better than the canonical central perspective. Florenski uses mathematics in an inspiring way in order to emphasize the validity of his detailed treatment of major questions in the fine arts. This is why we find SFCs in his discourse about central perspective, which was a rather unusual link for his time. In order to prepare images for formal mathematical treatment with SFCs, Florenski (1919) made the following comment with regards to color: “The colors correspond to the energy of an engraver in the process of engraving”. Color thus becomes a value between black and white, and we are left with something that can be thought of as a set of points on a two-dimensional surface that is ready to be addressed by means of mathematics. In the same way, a painter is confronted to the well-defined problem of translating the points of three- or even higher-dimensional reality onto the two-dimensional one. As a mathematician, Florenski knew the work of Cantor, Peano and Hilbert, and fruitfully connects their results with questions of image theory. In order to exemplify his mathematically inspired ideas, he had to take one step back. He focused on the problem of mapping the two-dimensional plane onto a one-dimensional line. Florenski took this problem as an analogy for all other possible correlations between realities of different dimensionalities. The fact that the medium of depiction is always smaller than that which is depicted, at least as far as the dimensionality is concerned, dominates his considerations about the relation between reality and the medium. Yet Florenski is convinced that it is still possible to depict everything, and that nothing from the whole will get lost. The transformation from one reality/medium to the next leaves its traces, according to Florenski, and he explains this by means of Hilbert’s curve.


In 1890 Giuseppe Peano invented SFCs, which were of purely mathematical and academic interest in the beginning. It is often mentioned that his approach was entirely analytic, and that there were no accompanying drawings (Peano, 1890). One year later, David Hilbert (1891), to whom Florenski often refers in his work, found a particularly instructive example of an SFC, on which we focus here. Florenski never went into detail regarding how his thoughts concerning the problem of depiction and mapping are mathematically formulated. This would have been unreasonable for the readership of his time. But today we are more familiar with fractal structures. So, how can we construct a correspondence between two- and one-dimensions via Hilbert’s curve? Let us imagine a white page. This page can later be replaced with any image. On this page we start with a line segment like this Π. In the next step we construct four copies and rearrange them applying some rotations. Then, we close the gaps in between and take the resulting structure as a starting point for the next step (Figure 1).


Figure 1: The first steps in the construction of the Hilbert curve

 This can be repeated at will. Every time the result has to be scaled down four times in order to fit the size of the page with which we started. For all finite approximations, this line is self-avoiding, which means that the line covers every point on the surface of the page only once. Further, neighboring relations of a 2D image tend to be maintained on the 1D line. So why do we have to undergo such an involved construction? Could we not have used a simple spiral that covers the two-dimensional plane instead? We are about to discover the traces that are left after transforming content into a medium of fewer dimensions. Although we have managed to transform everything, and nothing is lost, we have however destroyed the relations that the image contains. The middle of a spiral, for instance, preserves the relations found on an image relatively well. But as we progress outwards, the points that are close to each other on the plane are unlikely to be found as neighbors on the line, unless they are beaded in succession by chance. Even the meander-like structure of Hilbert’s curve is not able to perfectly maintain the relations in the image, yet it does so much better than the spiral. Florenski (1919) is well-aware of this fact when he describes in very plastic terms the essence of a fractal, or how the medium represents reality as broken into dust: “An eggshell, or even just a piece of it, can in no way be spread onto a marmoreal table without being deformed, crushed into fine dust, and this is why it is impossible to precisely depict an egg on a piece of paper or canvas”.


A contemporary of Florenski, Kazimir Malevich was also aware of disturbing proximity relations when mapping reality. He found a similar problem in text production. In 1919, he wrote: “When we look at a line of verse, it is minced like in a sausage, made of all possible forms alien to each other and not knowing their next-door neighbor” (Malevich, 1919). In poetry, reality has to be turned into a linear string, in contrast to its existing multi-dimensionality. If we go along this string and try to consume it, we experience the forms of reality as rhythm. According to Malevich (1919), the poet is “rearranging the repository of all things.” Here he meets precisely with Florenski´s idea that everything remains preserved, but that the rearrangement leaves noticeable traces behind. The difference before and after the transformation is not manifested in the fact that something is missing. In the sausage and in the repository metaphors, both forms stay more or less intact. Everything seems slightly distorted and mixed. Elsewhere, however, Malevich breaks form on all levels, like the eggshell spread onto the marmoreal table. He realizes that the power of rhythm, which is finally the constructive principle of mapping, sometimes leaves nothing behind untouched: “There is poetry in which pure rhythm and tempo remain as movement and time; (…) yet at times a letter is not able to embody the tension of a sound, and therefore has to pulverise” (Malevich, 1919). And in a more drastic formulation: “There is poetry in which the poet has to destroy objects for the sake of rhythm, leaving behind torn frazzles of unexpected compositions of forms” (Malevich, 1919). In connecting the mapping problem to the fine arts, as Florenski did with Hilbert’s curve, and Malevich with text production, we are guided back to the beginning of our considerations: the points in images. When we read a text, an image appears in our mind. Only by constructing this image, which should be understood as an abstract, higher-dimensional reality, can we make meaning emerge by bringing together these single pieces of pulverized letters and words, senseless on their own. The installation “hilbert01” (Figure 2) attempts to visualize this metaphor.

Figure 2: hilbert01 computer graphic installation by Florian Grond 2004

 Malevich comes to comparable conclusions: “Rhythm and tempo create and take away the sounds that are born through them, and generate a new image from nothing” (Malevich, 1919). Since we generally do not know the construction principle by which our fractal line perambulates reality, we are, with reason, skeptical towards the creation of images out of words. Only the meaningless, small pieces of fractal dust seem to be real.


In the chapter entitled “Quickness” in Six Memos for the Next Millennium, Calvino (1985) refers to “lu cuntu nun metti temptu” which means that time takes no time in a fairytale. This is a formula traditionally used by Italian storytellers to indicate large leaps in time. With this formula, Calvino investigates the relationship between text and image sixty years after Florenski and Malevich. One might suggest that all three of them were facing the construct of Hilbert’s curve, although not all of them knew it. In order to shorten time, Calvino says, the poet can iterate less deeply in areas where his imagination of reality is more monotonous. He can leave out parts that he does not want to describe in detail so that the reader can consume the text faster. In fairytales, people often disappear into parallel worlds, and when they return they find themselves again in a different time. The parallel worlds correspond to the levels of the hierarchical order of the Hilbert curve, which, in order to perambulate it, requires a different amount of time depending on which iteration depth one chooses. With the aid of Calvino we can also shed light on the essence of rhythm in prose. Calvino explains: “Just as rhyme creates rhythm in poems and songs, so can we find events that rhyme in prose” (Calvino, 1985). And he assumes that part of the childlike joy in listening to fairytales is the repetitive anticipation of certain structures, be they situations, colloquialisms or flowery phrases. If we refer to the Hilbert curve, we find that the curved structure leads the reader through the imagined in such a way as to come back to the same neighborhood several times before proceeding onwards. According to Calvino we can often find this kind of self-similarity in Middle-Eastern stories, which strongly depend upon the structure of a story within a story (Calvino, 1985). Scheherazade can save her life because she can endlessly find links from one story to another. In a way, she is being guided through reality along a fractal path, which corresponds to a further topos that Calvino describes as being important for good literature. This is the idea of “festina lente” (more haste, less speed), which is sometimes depicted as a crab and a butterfly. The butterfly stands for an agitated movement and the crab for inertia. A good text must incorporate both qualities: dwell upon one subject and browse it subtly, all the while being full of flighty movement. It must not be boring, but metaphorically and indirectly shed light on the subject, rather than come to the point and insist on it. The image that appears to us when a fractal line guides us through reality is similar. But what is the relation of possible time contraction and rhythm with the image? A good text should enable us to experience certain images instantaneously even when we have to struggle through it. In order to explain this Calvino (1985) uses the figure of Sagredo in the Dialogue about the Two World Pictures by Galileo Galilee. He describes Sagredo as someone capable of instant reasoning. This means precisely to catch sight of the image while reading a text, and to perceive what we are reading from the next higher perspective, which, in a certain way, is equivalent to taking a divine, timeless position. The next higher dimension enables us to avoid the process of piecing together an image, and therefore stops time. This is how the image confronts us with the utopia of instantaneous, and therefore timeless, insight. A good text should provoke the same experience, in spite of the fact that we spend time with it.

Florenski particularly emphasizes that we must always accept a compromise when depicting reality in media. On the one hand, we can try to maintain the original form in its depiction. This is considered a naturalistic approach. In this case, the relation between reality and its representation is not unique. On the other hand, we can try to achieve a unique relation between all points in the depiction and reality. In this case, the representation seems formless and appears to be broken up into dust. These juxtapositions of representing and conserving form versus its deconstruction seem to mutually condition each other. Breaking things up into dust might be the result of a mapping through an elaborate structure like an SFC. In my opinion, creative processes always negotiate between these poles. While Malevich for instance emphasizes the deconstructive aspects of literary creation (torn frazzles of unexpected compositions, Malevich (1919)), Scheherazade is a good example of the constructive efforts in storytelling, which we have compared to the self-similar structures of SFCs. If we think of text as a sheer information carrier, which requires a proper interface in order to communicate its content, then we can compare it to the experimental indexing of databases with the help of SFCs. The way in which Scheherazade tells her story can therefore be seen as an early realization of a database, in which the form makes content highly accessible. Texts can only contain a finite amount of signs, which are only repeated a limited amount of times. Still, our mind fills the rest to infinity, even when the text only allows for a finite repetition of self-similar structures. A thousand and one nights is a finite amount of time, yet Scheherazade becomes eternal by telling her story. What is particularly charming about a meandering narration that is self-similar in a mathematical sense is that through its very structure, it has the power to refer beyond itself and its finite representation.

SFCs in sonification

All these ideas about SFCs recently inspired me to apply them in the field of sonification (Grond, 2007), similar approaches can be found in (Vogt et all 2007). As an example of high-dimensional data I took sequences of images, as in a movie. The movie frames, which were reorganized into lines through SFCs, were prepared for sound synthesis. Considering the fact that an image transmits information in a synchronous way, I took the linearized data as frequency information in order to achieve a sonification with similar qualities. The relations of frequency ranges in the sound reflected the relations within the whole image. The sequential RGB (red green blue) output of the image data was scaled between 0 and 1, and further read into three different audio buffers of 1024 samples. These buffers were used in subtractive audio synthesis as a filter bank for white noise. The three different resulting audio streams were sent to a pair of stereo channels, with one stream equally distributed to both of them. Comparing different data scans, as well as their effects on the resulting sounds (Figure 3), I found that a horizontal scan line creates repetitive patterns of shapes in the image.

Figure 3. This image shows different scan methods applied to a movie file of 85 frames. The vertical axes are the scan points and the horizontal axes are the 85 movie frames. From top to bottom: spiral scan, line scan and SFC scan (Hilbert curve)

If we look at them from a sonic perspective we recognize something like an equally distanced overtone series, which has a very pronounced effect on our acoustic perception. This fact leads us to conclude that some parts of what we hear in this case are structural artifacts of the scan process. If we take a spiral instead, the overtone patterns are more complex, but are essentially still there. By using an SFC, we avoid such patterns, thanks to the locally progressing nature of this scan process. In order to use the program to explore movies, I implemented methods to interact with it in real-time during sound synthesis. The acoustic structures that the user might hear would be repeating oscillations in a certain frequency range. In this case, the program allowed to restrict scanning to this frequency range, and to mute all other frequencies. The segment of the scan line that represented this particular range was displayed as a line textured with the scanned image. In this way, a correspondence between acoustically interesting frequency regions and the relating parts of the image could easily be established. Without SFCs it would be impossible to narrow down the corresponding frequency range. This usage of SFCs basically corresponds to range queries in databases as described by Zimmermann (2001).
Using the SFC took advantage of the close relation between the image data and the sounds produced, so that any perceived sound pattern could be well identified to its visual cause. The biggest strength of SFCs in sonification is to open up the possibility that perceived acoustic patterns might point directly to specific features in complex, high-dimensional data. In this way, the SFC proves its validity once again as a mapping method, by providing an efficient interface with which to access high-dimensional structures.


I would like to thank Tamar Tembeck for her revision of my English translation of a first version of this article in German (Grond, 2005). Agnes Grond, Gunther Reisinger and Inge Hinterwaldner made numerous fruitful comments to the original German essay. I would like to thank Julia Lechler for pointing me to Pawel Florenski and Kazimir Malevic.

Calvino,I (1985) Six Memos fort he next Millennium, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts 1988.

Florenski, P. (1919): Die umgekehrte Perspektive in Raum und Zeit, KONTEXTverlag Berlin 1997

Grond, F. (2005) Von der Realität zur Linie und zurück, eine kleine theory of everything, In Das Wahre, Falsche, Schöne. . Grond W Mazenauer B (Eds) Studienverlag/Haymonverlag, Innsbruck 2005.

Grond, F. (2007) ORGANIZED DATA FOR ORGANIZED SOUND  Space filling curves in sonification Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Auditory Display, Montréal, Canada.

Vogt, K de Campo, A Frauenberger, C Plessas, W Eckel, G (2007) Sonification of Spin Models. Listening to Phase Transitions in the Ising and Potts Model Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Auditory Display, Montréal, Canada.

Hilbert, D (1891): Über die stetige Abbildung einer Linie auf einem Flächenstück, Mathematische Annalen 38

Malevič, K (1919): Über Dichtung, in: Kazimir Malevič, Gott ist nicht gestürzt, Carl Hanser Verlag München Wien 2004.

Peano, G (1890) Sur une courbe, qui remplit toute une aire plane Mathematische Annalen.36

Zimmermann, J (2001), Dynamische Lastverteilung bei Finite-Elemente-Methoden auf Parallelrechnern mit Hilfe von space-filling curves, Technical University of Munich, Retrieved September, 2007, from: