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T-shirt turns air guitar into music

T-shirt turns air guitar into music

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CANBERRA, Australia — Scientists announced Monday that they have developed a high-tech T-shirt that turns the strumming of an air guitar into music.

The T-shirt has motion sensors built into its elbows that pick up the wearer's arm motions and relay them wirelessly to a computer which interprets them as guitar riffs, said Richard Helmer, an engineer who leads the research team from the government's Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization.

One arm is interpreted as picking chords while the other strums. The "wearable instrument shirt" is adaptable to both right and left-handed would-be rock stars.

"It's an easy-to-use, virtual instrument that allows real-time music making even by players without significant musical or computing skills," Helmer said in a statement.

"It allows you to jump around and the sound generated is just like an original MP3," he added, referring to the digital audio file format.

The shift is a collaboration between CSIRO researchers in computing, chemistry, electronics, music composition and textile manufacture.

Helmer said sensors could be used in the future to reproduce a person in the virtual world so they could get feedback on their actions and improve their sporting techniques.

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