Magic Dancing Music Box

Created on 16 Nov 2016

Finally! The product we've all been waiting for: a magic box that makes objects dance to music!

We will create a physical box that uses temporal aliasing to make ordinary objects appear as though they are dancing to music. The project is primarily motivated by the KickStarter campaign [Slow Dance – A Frame that Slows Down Time](, with the added goal to time the resulting movement to the rhythm of any song. The banner image and diagram below show the original model upon which our project is based. ![Slow Dance Image]( "Slow Dance Diagram") The box creates the illusion of slow-motion dancing by vibrating an object at a high frequency and timing a strobe light at a near frequency. The interference pattern produced by the vibration and strobe light’s frequencies causes the vibration to appear significantly slower. As explained by the persistence of vision, the human eye perceives the discrete positions upon which the strobe illuminates as a smooth, natural motion. Peculiar motions of the object are visible since the actual high frequency vibration causes the object to move in an irregular fashion. The beat frequency of the resulting motion is determined simply by the absolute difference of the two input frequencies. We intend to attach an audio input and speakers to our box. From the audio we will automatically detect the beat of the selected music, and determine the vibration and strobe frequency such that the object moves at the same beat. Alignment of the interference and music phase shifts (such that the apex of an object’s motion aligns precisely with the music’s downbeat) will initially be manually calibrated, and if necessary, may be determined via an additional calibrating sensor. Code for our project can be found in our [github repo](


Nitsan Shai


Suhaas Reddy


Tim Brooks


Alex O'Neill

Part Cost Quantity Total
McMaster-Carr $4.24 3 $12.72
1/4" thread 1/2" length phillips head bolts (91773A537)
McMaster-Carr $9.34 1 $9.34
6' x 1" x 1/8" Aluminum (4490T191)
McMaster-Carr $6.74 6 $40.44
12" x 12" semi-clear gray acrylic sheet (8505K11)
Aluminum Heat Sink for Raspberry Pi 3 - 15 x 15 x 15mm ID: 3082 - $1.9 $1.95 1 $1.95
Heat sink for Raspberry Pi
Rotary Potentiometer - 10k Ohm, Linear - COM-09939 - SparkFun Electron $0.86 2 $1.72
Linear potentiometers to use as dials LEDMO SMD 2835 White Non-waterproof LED Light Strip - DC12 $11.59 1 $11.59
led light strip
McMaster-Carr $6.70 1 $6.70
1/4" thread 13/64" height thin lock nut (94945A205) MyCableMart 6 ft 3.5mm Mini-Stereo TRS Male to Y-Female (2 $2.58 1 $2.58
MyCableMart 6 ft 3.5mm Mini-Stereo TRS Male to Y-Female (2) Stereo Speaker Extension Ca
Raspberry Pi 3 - Model B - ARMv8 with 1G RAM ID: 3055 - $39.95 : Adafr $39.95 1 $39.95
Raspberry Pi 3 Model B
McMaster-Carr $22.41 2 $44.82
8' x 1" x 1" x 1/8" Aluminum Angle (88805K77)
503 Service Unavailable Error $27.95 1 $27.95
high power led light
503 Service Unavailable Error $99.99 1 $99.99
Edifier R1280T Powered Bookshelf Speakers
Project Totals: 21 $299.75
Track 1 Base Budget: $250.00
Preferred Vendor Budget Bonus: $50.00
Remaining Budget: $0.25