Now hear this: Beat box creates music using RFID tags

There's a lot of tech out there to help you create music, but RFID tags is a new one. See how two NYU students are using the wireless tech to make beats.

The RFID Beat Box uses disc-shaped RFID tags to make music. Screenshot by Bonnie Cha/CNET

Some people march to the beat of a different drummer, and we'd say Danne Woo and Stefanie Kleinman are two such individuals.

The NYU students created an instrument that uses RFID (radio-frequency identification) technology to make music, and the result is pretty entrancing if you ask us.

The RFID Beat Box works by reading the various RFID tags, which are cleverly designed to look like tiny vinyl records. Each tag/disc is programmed with a different sound that's triggered when placed in one of four wooden bowls, which are outfitted with RFID readers.

The discs and bowls are color-coded to indicate a certain instrument or musical style, and LED lights blink along to the beat for visual effect.

RFID technology uses radio waves to identify and communicate data. The technology is used for such purposes as tracking inventory and electronic toll collection (e.g. FasTrak, EZ-Pass), but the beat box is definitely one of the more creative uses of RFID tags we've seen in a long time.

RFID Beat Box from Danne Woo on Vimeo.

(Via Engadget)

About the author

Bonnie Cha is chief correspondent for Crave, covering every kind of tech toy imaginable (with a special obsession for robots and Star Wars-related stuff). When she's not scoping out stories, you can find her checking out live music or surfing in the chilly waters of Northern California.

 

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