Looking for new music? Just download this app and then point your phone to the sky

Airliner comes up with unique iPhone app

Look at Air France being all innovative and tech-savvy! The across-the-pond airliner has developed a new free iPhone app called “Music in the Sky” and it lets users discover new music simply by pointing their iPhone at the sky.

Air France Music in the Sky

Air France Music in the Sky

Specifically, Music in the Sky adds exclusive new music tracks to the user’s current playlist when the track is discovered hidden in the clouds. It’s instantly downloadable and the new song can be played right away through the iPhone to either one’s headphones or portable speaker.

What’s more, each region of the sky has its own tracks, whether it’s Paris or Tokyo, San Francisco or Buenos Aires, so users can download a new song every time they travel.

Screen shot of Air France Music in the Sky

Screen shot of Air France Music in the Sky

To mark the launch of this new technology, Air France is previewing five unreleased tracks from François & The Atlas Mountains, Eugene McGuinness, Villagers, Melody’s Echo Chamber and Tomorrow’s World; more will be released throughout the year.

The Music in the Sky app is free and it’s worth downloading because in addition to offering new music, it allows the user to test their musical knowledge, too, and win prizes like concert tickets or credit towards a future flight with the airline vis-à-vis hidden games discovered – you guessed it – in the sky.

Video promo of “Music in the Sky” below:

Dude figures out way to use LEGOs to play the drums

Drum sequencer made of popular building blocks

If you were born in the last 50 years, then you definitely know of the awesomeness associated with LEGO building blocks.

LEGOs blocks

One thing that they’re not often considered for is musical instruments, though Mark Crosbie may have opened up a whole new door with the “SoundMachine”: a drum sequencer that creates music using different colored LEGO blocks.

LEGOs sensor plays drums

The way it works is pretty straightforward: a SoundMachine scanner scans the music from a LEGO plate and transmits it to the computer via USB. The scanner is mounted above a plate made up of regular blue 32 x 32 LEGO base plates and features musical “notes” made up of LEGO 2 x 2 bricks.

LEGOs drums

Each scanner has in it a LEGO Mindstorms NXT that drives a NXT motor to move a plate under an array of 4 LEGO NXT 2.0 color sensors. As the plate moves, the color of the bricks is read, which then gets converted to MIZDI note messages by a controller written in Processing. That then gets sent to Ableton Live to play the sounds.

LEGO NXT color sensors

A standard LEGO color sensor detects 6 basic colors, leaving red, yellow, and green to encode the notes which, by the way, are arranged in 4 parallel tracks aligned with the color sensors. The white tiles are used to separate the notes and the sensors use a black reading to detect the start and end of the plate.

Since we make the world’s best portable speakers, we have a special place in our hearts for crazy scientists like Crosbie who think outside the box and figure out new ways to merge music and technology.

Here’s a video of his new music toy in action:

New Flash: Everyone’s STILL Using Wayyy Too Much Paper

Report shows that we’re actually taking down more trees than ever before

One would think that with all of the neat-o gadgets and gizmos out there that we, as a society, would be well on our way to FINALLY achieving a paperless planet.

Unfortunately, that thought would be wrong. Wayyyy wrong as a matter of fact.

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