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Listening to art. Playing with audio. Sounding out technology. Composing in code. Rewinding the soundscape.

Quote of the Week: Scanner’s Alarm

From the product description of the new Philips’ Wake-up Light 2008 clock:

Combining a reading lamp with an alarm clock, the new Wake-up Light offers a more pleasant way to wake up by gradually illuminating as it turns on to simulate a sunrise and follow the natural rhythm of the body. This is further enhanced by the diversity of alarm sounds to choose from to accompany the waking experience, from sounds derived from nature to a gentle, ambient waking alarm.

Those sounds are by none other than Scanner (aka Robin Rimbaud), who describes the project further on his site, scannerdot.com:

This month I’m finally allowed to speak openly about a major project I’ve been collaborating on for the last year with Philips in The Netherlands. Available in the stores now in Europe is the new Wake-up Light 2008 which evokes sunrise for a more pleasant and natural waking experience.

As a dawn simulator, no matter what time of day you wish to wake up of course, the Wake-Up Light combines a reading lamp with an alarm clock and offers a far more pleasant way to start a day, simulating a sunrise to echo the natural rhythm of the body. With the light slowly increasing in intensity over 30 minutes prior to the set time it produces a far gentler entry into the day. I consulted on the project and then designed several sound environments to balance this awakening, using natural sounds through to chimes and more musical shapes. Once fully illuminated, the lamp recalls a sunset on the horizon via a divider between the luminescence and the dark part of the object. So finally I’m able to get inside the bedrooms of unsuspecting people, into their innermost sanctums and fuse into their environment without detection!

More on the alarm clock at design.philips.com.

By Marc Weidenbaum

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  • about

  • Marc Weidenbaum founded the website Disquiet.com in 1996 at the intersection of sound, art, and technology, and since 2012 has moderated the Disquiet Junto, an active online community of weekly music/sonic projects. He has written for Nature, Boing Boing, The Wire, Pitchfork, and NewMusicBox, among other periodicals. He is the author of the 33 1⁄3 book on Aphex Twin’s classic album Selected Ambient Works Volume II. Read more about his sonic consultancy, teaching, sound art, and work in film, comics, and other media

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