Fractal Waveform?

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negativ
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Fractal Waveform?

Post by negativ » Tue Jul 19, 2011 3:03 am

Not sure if this is the place, or if anyone cares, but this is a weird idea I had.
For those who don't know, a fractal is essentially a geometric figure that contains recursive, scaled versions of the same figure to infinity. In a waveform, this could be a triangle wave that's wavelength decreases as it approaches the center of the wave, and then increases wavelength as it reaches the end of the waveform. A synthesizer could theoretically produce this sort of wave by means of reducing it to a fractal algorithm.
I suppose something like this could be used for a tuneless noise oscillator, but it would be a lot cheaper to just use a single noise waveform and make it play on any key. This oscillator would also just be ping-pong frequency modulating, and it would probably sound like pressing the highest and lowest keys on a regular synthesizer with fast portamento. In conclusion, there's no real application for anything like this. Dunno

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by Stab Frenzy » Tue Jul 19, 2011 4:08 am

Fractal waveforms could exist, but there would be no way of hearing that information as the variations would be very high frequency (and so would be filtered out by the DA convertor, or probably just the filter in the synth) and also very low amplitude.

If you had a fractal algorithm as the basis of a digital waveform and had a way of HPFing it and then keeping the waveform the same amplitude (wouldn't be difficult in the digital domain) you would end up with an oscillator that played at the same frequency no matter which octave you played in. :D Kind of the same as when you zoom in on a fractal and see the same pattern as you could see zoomed out.

If you had a non-repeating type fractal type thing you could have a waveform that morphed between timbres as you played up and down the keyboard. That would be pretty cool, although I imagine the processing power required to do it would be quite significant, especially seeing as you could get a similar effect by using note data to modulate the timbre in some other way.

Interesting topic, thanks for bringing it up. :thumbleft:

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by cartesia » Tue Jul 19, 2011 7:05 am

yeah, the only practical way to represent fractals in sound seems to be by segmenting time into recognisable sized chunks - eg, each 'step' of the fractal is done every 16th note or w/ever.. or you can use another parameter instead of time - It can have some cool effects, lots of sounds like glass shattering or water pouring and things like that

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by calaverasgrande » Wed Jul 20, 2011 11:26 pm

I think this topic bears further perusal after your consciousness has been er uh, ahem, fortified. Otherwise it's a bunch of balderdash.
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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by iphoenix » Fri Jul 22, 2011 1:03 am

A picture to sound converter type synth using pictures of fractals/ crop circles etc would be an interesting way of approaching this imo..Ive thought about experimenting with this for some time but not actually got round to doing it yet.

Applications such as Photosounder & Metasynth for example would be useful for this .

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by cartesia » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:41 am

calaverasgrande wrote:I think this topic bears further perusal after your consciousness has been er uh, ahem, fortified. Otherwise it's a bunch of balderdash.
:lol:

The only problem with the resulting ideas is there really is no way to translate them into a working written language :lol:

for example, this is the only way I can describe my idea of some crazy music that I dont have the skill to produce (for some reason for me I always think of music in visual terms.. or more correctly, I always translate things I see into music):

The inbetween-space-time-explorer-aliens (who exist inbetween the smallest frame of time and explore the strange land on the inside-out edge of what we might call 'space' or the universe) landed their ship in the middle of a fractal time-vortex cave,
they brought out nano-sensors which revealed to their amazement that the walls were in fact made of billions of hyper-fluorescent nano-fractal-crystalline-insectoids feeding on the time-vortex-cave's calcified walls... they moved so slowly that they were pretty much not moving at all, but they would live for what seemed like billions of years.. because time was so close to being stopped

Oh and of course everything was in infinitely high definition quality...

Once the inbetween-space-time-explorers had collected their data, they left and time returned to normal speed, where everything proceeded to implode/dissassemble in an infinitely short flash of time.

So in summary,
I think it's pretty well impossible to translate those experiences into tangible, communicable ideas...
Last edited by cartesia on Fri Jul 22, 2011 2:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by samuraipizzacat29 » Fri Jul 22, 2011 1:30 pm

Isn't this the basic idea behind the transwaves in the fizmo? you can step through the waves in real time so the content morphs. A fractal infinitely repeats, and so does a standard oscillator. So I can't see how it would be that interesting (sonically) unless you had a way of stepping-through or controlling the individual waveforms. This shouldn't be that difficult if you're a programmer, because it's just a new formula for making an oscillator. It's being able to pick out where you want your "sample-point" to start and end that gets a little more tricky, and how to control it. The actual creation of the oscillator itself shouldn't take that much processing power, because hey - we've already got virtual acoustic synthesis, right? That's just mathematical representations of waveforms as well.

FWIW I think the idea/implementation is cool as c**p. There's certain sampling hardware and software that gets close to the idea (v-synth, certain vsts), but thats' about it. It amazes me we haven't gotten too much farther than osc sync and modulator amplitude in the last 20 yrs. And virtual acoustic synthesis often gets overlooked by many because it's not within the realm of standard deviation.

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by ninja6485 » Sat Jul 23, 2011 3:56 pm

it would probably just end up sounding like an organ...
This looks like a psychotropic reaction. No wonder it's so popular...

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by clubbedtodeath » Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:48 pm

calaverasgrande wrote:Otherwise it's a bunch of balderdash.
"Balderdash"??

In an instant, I'm transported to Victorian England, populated by street urchins and upright gentlemen sporting fine moustaches -- VSE was in its infancy back then.

Image

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by samuraipizzacat29 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 4:07 pm

ms20? i would have went moog modular...... If we're talking uptight street urchins that is....

:D

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by calaverasgrande » Tue Jul 26, 2011 6:13 pm

clubbedtodeath wrote:
calaverasgrande wrote:Otherwise it's a bunch of balderdash.
"Balderdash"??

In an instant, I'm transported to Victorian England, populated by street urchins and upright gentlemen sporting fine moustaches -- VSE was in its infancy back then.

Image
you sir have colored me with some kind of yankee steampunk characterisation.
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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by ItsMeOnly » Tue Jul 26, 2011 8:00 pm

Fractal waveform? A waveform of which harmonic profile when looked at different frequency range/spectral length or time division looks exactly like the whole? We have that: it's called noise...

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by portland » Mon Aug 01, 2011 1:15 am

ItsMeOnly wrote:Fractal waveform? A waveform of which harmonic profile when looked at different frequency range/spectral length or time division looks exactly like the whole? We have that: it's called noise...
Exactly what I thought....

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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by piRoN » Mon Aug 01, 2011 4:07 am

ItsMeOnly wrote:Fractal waveform? A waveform of which harmonic profile when looked at different frequency range/spectral length or time division looks exactly like the whole? We have that: it's called noise...
Noise has statistical self-similarity, I think what's being talked about here is waveforms with exact self-similarity.

Which as far as I can see, would just end up sounding like another buzzing tone, where the amount of upper harmonic content is determined by the degree of recursion.
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Re: Fractal Waveform?

Post by Zamise » Tue Aug 02, 2011 8:26 am

kind of interesting...

http://www.tursiops.cc/fm/
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