The Digital Guitar
Chad Spangler
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For my project I designed a guitar that is played using the human voice, a digital synthesizer, speech recognition software and speakers. This instrument is made with the street musician or multi-instrumentalist  in mind although it would be available to anyone. The user will wear a mask that covers his mouth with two speakers built into it. The user will then say which note he wants played into a built in microphone. The speech recognition software will translate what the user is saying and a digital replica of that note will play through two speakers in the mask or through an amp that the mask can be plugged into wirelessly. The length of the note is determined by the user. The note will play for however long the user is saying it.

Being that this instrument is made for multi-instrumentalist's I chose to use only major chords:

The speech recognition software works like so:
Speech recognition software requires a fast CPU, plenty of RAM, a good microphone, and a good sound card. A computer doesn't speak your language, so it must transform your words into something it can understand. A microphone converts your voice into an analog signal and feeds it to your sound card. An analog-to-digital converter takes the signal and converts it to a stream of digital data (ones and zeros). Then the software goes to work.

A simplified discription of how a synthesizer works:

A synthesizer makes sounds by using an electrical circuit as an oscillator to create a frequency of sounds in order to produce different pitches. As long as the pitch is within the range of frequency that can be heard by a human ear, it's known as a "musical pitch". If you put several oscillators together, you can combine several pitches to create a "chord". Synthesizers are only able to mimic the sounds of non-synthetic instruments, but also to create sounds that can only be played by a music synthesizer.