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Synchronous Objects for One Flat Thing, reproduced

Posted by Sravan | April 14, 2009 .

Synchronous Objects is a rich website hosted by the Ohio State University. The site is a research tool for visualizing and exploring the complexities of choreography. It is the latest project of internationally renowned dancer and choreographer William Forsythe.

The project was built with the support of Norah Zuniga Shaw, the director of OSU’s Dance and Technology program, and Maria Palazzi, the director of OSU’s Advanced Computing Center, not to forget the several students of each of these.

The site uses Flash for most of the pages and objects and Java applets for the tools. There are a few tools like the Counterpoint Tool and the CueVisualizer Tool.

Each of these tools introduce some complex concepts of choreography.

e.g. The Counterpoint Tool introduces concepts of counterpoint and alignment in an interactive environment of increasing complexity.

Counterpoint Tool

The CueVisualizer Tool shows the cues (which can actually be both visual and aural directions) given and cue givers and received by cue receivers at a global level.

Cue Visualization Tool

Staring at these for a few minutes, a complete dance illiterate like me could understand a thing or two about choreography and I’m grateful for that. I am more fascinated by the expression of such complex ideas into clear concepts and defining them with a set of physical equations, than by drawing those physical equations using a programming language.

According to the New York Times feature

The project is the first step toward a larger venture, Motion Bank, that Mr. Forsythe envisions as a digital library containing dance scores from many different choreographers.

Thanks to Ethan Eismann for introducing this wonderful project after nearly a month’s silence.

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