Infinite Loop

Infinite Loop

InfiniteLoop is an interactive, audio controlled video mixer that utilizes video feedback to generate automated live visuals.

InfiniteLoop’s name and inspiration come from the physical reality that is the seemingly infinite and expanding cityscape of Shanghai. InfiniteLoop was created in lieu of a culmination of serendipitous forces that coalesced while I was living in Shanghai. Collaborations with the illustrious Max Dreyer of Dreyer Projects introduced me to video feedback systems in Max/Msp/Jitter. 没关系, my humble submission to the noise and experimental music scene in Shanghai, needed a visual element for it’s live shows. Every night after work I was riding Line 3 of the Shanghai Metro to and from Chinese classes at Donghua University 东华大学…

Line 3 of the Shanghai Metro is a continuous loop that circumferences the city’s central urban districts and continues in an “infinite loop.” From out the metro car windows, one can see a city that has no visible terminus, no present perimeter – a city that appears to go on forever.

So, bandmate Jay Hammers and I collected a ton of footage recorded out the windows of Line 3 and amassed a formidable collection of video clips to use as a source for our live shows around Shanghai. The footage 没关系 used during live shows looked something like this:

I designed InfiniteLoop with electronic music artists in mind. Alot of the time, especially in the close-listening, “challenging” genres of electronic music, electronic musicians sit at their computer or synthesizer turning knobs (ahem!, 没关系) without much interaction with the audience, or let’s say, without giving the audience much to look at. Not only giving the audience something interesting to look at, InfiniteLoop weaves an audio responsive portrait that tells the story of Shanghai’s explosive development.

About the program

InfiniteLoop simultaneously mixes two video tracks. While this application can read individual video files, it prefers folders with movies from which it will create a random playlist, which can be randomly or sequentially played through the mixer automatically.

The heart of InfiniteLoop is the video feedback module, which analyzes certain qualities in sound and them applies them to generate video feedback. During live performances, the audience can actually see a complex, computer generated visual representation of what is happening musically.

This mixer is meant to be used handsfree, so you can plug it into a projector, connect it to your sound source and let it run your visual show by checking the “auto fade” option. Easy.


Application for OS X 10.5+

Max project
(requires Cycling 74’s Max/Msp/Jitter)