Alumni Directory

Valerie Williams
MS, Fall 2010

Home Dept: Electrical and Computer Engineering

MS Dissertation title: Creating a malleable, real-time, responsive environment for dancers.

MS Advisor(s): Julie Dickerson

Area of MS research: The focus of the work constituting this thesis was to find/develop a less expensive and more robust way to put the modern dancer in control of the dance product on the stage environment. That control of the stage environment includes using the dancer's movement to affect the sound, lighting, and visual backgrounds in a way that respond to the dancer. The setup of the interactive technologies and sensor system should be simple, intuitive with easily available components. Hardware is already available; for instance, webcameras are ubiquitous and wireless microphones are common. Interactive software which don't require writing code is also readily available, in forms that range from programming environments like Isadora that have a user-friendly graphic interface, to Max, 4 which requires more programming knowledge. The time has come for technicians to move out of the lab and into the dance studio, and for choreographers to acknowledge some of what is happening in the world of technology.

Employment upon graduating:
Cofounder
Co'Motion Dance Theater
Ames, IA

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