48 Hour Inclusive Design Challenge, Seoul 2009
Jamsil Sports Complex, Seoul
12-14 October 2009
Sponsored and and co-organised by the British Council as part of their Creative Cities project and the Seoul Metropolitan Government
Team leader: Cian Plumbe (Studiohead)
Design partner: Hwang Hye Jin (graphic designer)
A popular social pastime around the world, karaoke brings people together, but can exclude those with hearing impairments. The team were inspired by their hearing-impaired design partner's desire to train her singing voice despite being unable to hear it.
To address this challenge,the team developed a game that gives the user visual feedback of their singing style and challenges them to correct the tone of each note as it is sung. This allows hearing impaired users to participate in social karaoke sessions but also caters for those who are shy, tone deaf or in need some practice.
How does it work?
Both the correct tone and that of the singer are displayed as scrolling graphics on the screen along with the lyrics. The singer is challenged to match the tone of their voice to that of the song. The singer can mimic the expression and mouth position of the tutor who shows them how to reach the intended note. These animated faces and gestures reflect the expressions of those with hearing difficulties and act as a visual learning tool.
To emphasise the character of the game, a connected video-camera films the singer to track their facial expressions and gestures. Both the tuning and emotions will be compared with the natural characteristics of the song - which then creates the final score.
With PitchPerfect, everyone can enjoy social occasions without the fear of being out of tune and can learn songs they don't know, and perfect the ones they do.