WKNC Creates Music Visualizer

Photo by John Kovalchik

Photo by John Kovalchik

A group of WKNC students placed second in NC State Libraries’ inaugural Code+Art Student Visualization Contest. Sponsored by Christie Digital systems, the competition called for students to create large-scale, data-driven “generative artwork” for display on the twenty-foot wide Art Wall and iPearl Immersion Theater at the James B. Hunt Jr. Library on Centennial Campus.

The WKNC team, led by Cameren Dolecheck, spent months designing and coding the project, which tied a campus and city landscape into listener information from WKNC’s online audio stream. The buildings that make up the landscape, including D.H. Hill Library that houses the station’s antenna and transmitter, light up to the frequency of the music played on the audio stream. The scene is also filled with bird-like objects, or boids, to represent each current online listener.

Photo by Cameren Dolecheck

Photo by Cameren Dolecheck

At the Code+Art opening reception and awards ceremony April 15, Dolecheck spoke of how he and his teammates wanted to use this project to both publicize the radio station and demonstrate the value it has to the campus and community. “We wanted to join the competition because it was a perfect way to get WKNC in a space where people would see it,” Dolecheck told Technician. “A surprising number of people on campus are not aware of WKNC or that N.C. State even has a radio station. One of the key goals of this project was to get the piece in a space that when people walk into the library, they would see this piece, think of WKNC and become interested.”

Dolecheck, a senior in computer science, is the station’s electronic music director. Harrison Wideman, the project’s lead designer, is a junior in design studies and former indie rock assistant music director. The rest of the team is comprised of WKNC DJs Neal Grantham, a graduate student studying statistics, Dylan Stein, a junior in computer science and Colin Keesee, a sophomore studying industrial design. 

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