Haptic Shoulder Rest

Abstract: An augmented violin shoulder rest that uses two voice coils to generate haptic feedback. This is a new means of providing a violinist haptic feedback coupled to live digital audio processing during performance and follows recent trends in development of rich multimodal interfaces. The haptic shoulder rest is used in tandem with other hardware and software systems during augmented violin performance. Digitally processed audio signals generated by the system are sent to the shoulder rest in order to haptically couple it with the overall sonic dynamics of the system.

Publication: S. Thorn & B. Lahey. 2018. “A Haptic-Feedback Shoulder Rest for the Hybrid Violin.” Proceedings of the 2019 International Computer Music Conference, New York City

Patent pending.



Presented at the Guthman Competition | Georgia Tech, March 2018


Abstract: Alto.glove is a sensor-embedded, WiFi-enabled data glove designed to extend the performance capabilities of violinists and violists.

Publication: S. Thorn. 2019. “Alto.glove: New Techniques for Augmented Violin." Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on New Interfaces for Musical Expression, Blacksburg

Force-Sensitive Resistors

Force-sensitive resistors are located on the inside of the index finger for actuation by the pad of the thumb, and on the anterior of thumb for actuation by the pad of the index finger, allowing continuous control of two parameters with only partial release of the bow grip.

Flex Sensors

Flex sensors are distributed on the index and fourth fingers, reflecting the horizontal pivoting of the bow in the hand as well as situations in which the bow is gripped (pizzicato) or the fourth finger lifted from the stick to achieve a “transparent sound” (Ivan Galamian). A bi-directional flex sensor on the wrist serves as a proxy for the lateral position of the bow on the strings. 

Motion Sensing

A motion sensor is built into a circuit board resting proximal to the wrist, uniquely secured with an elastic band and bracket. Oriented this way, gyroscopic z-axis readings accurately represent bowing velocity, while x-axis movements represent string crossings.

Design documentary / original glove.

Guthman Competition Talk

Functional Overview

Functional Overview