INTRODUCTION

R/M is a wearable AI system that coordinates rhythm using body movements.
This project began from designing a musical educational tool, however ended up becoming a bigger idea that applies to more fields. Studying rhythm is beneficial to us in a variety of ways which we don't even notice. It creates more neuron connections, improves our moods, and trains our brains unknowingly. 

What is rhythm?​
Rhythm is the a fundamental element of music. However, rhythm does not only exist in music, it is everywhere. For example, the orbit revolution of the earth, the hunting habits of predators and even the blood circulation in a person's body all follow a form of rhythm.
Why is rhythm important?
Rhythm acts as a magical link between body movements and brain functionality. Studying rhythm can have an array of benefits:
Better body-brain coordination;
Deeper understanding the music;
Creating more neuron connections for Parkinson's and ADHD patients.
Fields
Music education, sport, fitness, therapy, health, etc.

Existing products / solutions​
Metronome, fitness tracker, ​swimming (biking, running, etc) tempo trainer, sleep cycle monitor; Marathon pacer, personal coach, music tutor, etc. 

Problems
The human brain is not trustable for rhythm/tempo/time perception. Our blood pressure, mood, brain activities and a lot more other factors can easily change the perception of rhythm; Human tutoring cost time, money. It is emotional, and not accurate as machine; Machines or products are accurate but lack of a perception, analysis, and feedback system comparing to human being; Fitness trackers are lack of simultaneously feedbacks during body movements.
Solution
To build a wearable AI system that combines the accuracy of machine and the methodology, detection/feedback system of human being. It detects and send multi sensory feedbacks to users simultaneously during body movements. 


PROCESS

Research + Brain study + Finding
There are a lot of interesting phenomenons related to rhythms and tempos. People will subconsciously make body movements with the beats while listening to a piece of music, especially a piece of Rock music or dancing in a night club. Most of the students and musicians tap their feet in order to keep the right tempo during their practice or performance. Kids learn rhythm and tempo by clapping their hands and varies of body movement during their very beginning lessons. Rhythm and tempo have a connection with movements through brain activities (Motor Cortex).



Rhythm class + Interviews with professor
The videos show how do students coordinate rhythm by body movements. They are recorded in the rhythm class in school of music. Deeper issues and insights were dig out after the interview with experienced professors. Some student cannot follow to the rhythm even while listening to it (body entrainment). Learnt the importance of building inner tempo. Discussed the methodology.(https://vimeo.com/222027848)



Testings + Experiments
The videos show a glance of my testing and experimenting process. The testing includes multi-sensory testing, functionality testing, and interaction testing. The goals is to prove the main theory of my project and it showed positive result. I used different ways to stimulate the multi-sensory interactions between the product and users.Multi sensory feedback becomes a must for both visual and auditory users. (https://vimeo.com/221321906#at=0)



Created 3D printed prototypes to test ergonomic and comfort level
Learnt and get proficient in 3D printers. Get to know and understand different features and data settings for different filaments (flexsolid, PLA, ninjaflex, flexible resin, etc). Learnt the 3D printing softwares and handled with different kinds of 3D printers ( Resin printer, PLA printer). Gain the ability to analysis the problems and solve the issues during malfunctions.





HOW DOES IT WORK ?

         
 




DESIGN


Headband + Tracker + Analyzing System
Weather Resistance​
Designed with weather resistant and waterproof considerations. It is an indoor and outdoor device. Users can play music with it, doing sports, and even swim with it as a pacer.
Wearable Feedback System
Instead of staring at the phones and checking the informations inside of screens, this system create a more natural way (through the headband, which is the closest place to "human sensors") to receive feedbacks (by users or other team mates in a team section) simultaneous during body movements.
Smart System
Bring body movements into rhythm learning! The system detect body movement by the motion sensors and marking comparison and calculations with the preset rhythm and goals. Therefore, the system will know if the users are in the right track and be able to guide them back.


           
The main design style is minimalism and sporty. The strap is designed to be removable, stretchy, flexible, adjustable, good for washing, sweat resistance.

Control
One round rubbery rounded physical button ​for on/off and bluetooth connection. A touch panel is designed beneath the rotatable stick. Users could swipe and touch it with different gestures to switch the mode, adjusting volume, brightness, etc. 
Multi Sensory
Led spot light is designed under the stick, which can be hidden on top depending on users' need. Multi sensory is designed into the product after massive of user testing and research. The goal is to enhance the users' perception and trying to make more connections inside of human brain.​

The color set is designed according to the natural skin tones of human race, white, yellow, brown, black. As it s a wearable product which is so close to human skin, the best way to generate a nice combination is to let it fit inside of its scenario environment.




TRACKER



The tracker is able to track users' rhythm from their body movement, biological clock, heart beat. Information are sent to the system and generate feedbacks and guidance to users through the headband. Users are able to know their foot steps, workout situation, music tempo, biological clock, heart beat, sport rhythm, and calories by the information gathered from the tracker.
The tracker is wearable on different parts of the body. Due to the compatibility and the ride range of application, the tracker is able to fit on arms, wrists, ankles, etc. As a result, musicians who has a foot tapping habit can fit it on their ankles; swimmers can put it on their upper arms to reduce the disturbance, etc. The design of the elastic band with a buckle has a much larger range of tolerance for different parts of the body. At the same time, it is more durable and compact, which is also exchangeable.

         
            
A glance of UI (for musical rhythm learner)
Featured with team work connection, self practice mode, tutor mode, and rhythm necklace
Users can practice individually or join in a group. Rhythm is detected and transformed into graphical system to enhance the user experience and help people learn rhythm in a different way. Any existing rhythm can be transferred into this rhythm necklace system. Users can customize and change their own rhythm by simply adding, dragging, selecting dots on the ring. In a team section, users can combine different necklaces and have fun with the interaction of the system.

     

THANK YOU


Further details could be found in