Credentials of research scientist behind the whole-food, plant based diet: https://wfpb-wolf.netlify.app/maturity.html
And maybe track this over time. Borrowing the analogy of HDD/SSD corruption, which can impact critical filesystem metadata just as easily as file contents, it's impossible to predict how that fundamental capacity to engage will shift and change in confounding and lateral ways.
It is a great showcase of the instrument
I grabbed my best pair of headphones and monitors ... but I imagine that any recording just does not do this monster of a piano justice.
See also: lutes. A theorbo might allow for greater expression, but it's not very practical. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVabz8LneI4
"Shouldn't it have a blinking red light on the end? You know, for airplanes."
For example here https://www.robertspianos.com/top-makes-of-piano/yamaha-pian...
Nothing listed there is half as long as this piano.
1. 8 x 40 feet (standard "long" shipping container), or
2. 15 feet, 9 inches x 72 feet (largest modular home size allowed on some US state highways)
I think 8 x 40 would be pianomax, 15 x 72 would be super pianomax. Alexander Piano is ~18 feet so it should fit inside of a standard 8 x 20 ft container with sufficient bracing. You're probably looking at 60-80 tons (guess) of wire tension for a 40' piano, maybe more.
He loaded the piano in his trailer and basically backed his BMW all the way up with half meter at most on each side, slowly through that elbow bend and parked the trailer's door right on where we planned to unload the piano. Maybe 2cm away from where he intended to land it.
IMO, this is the mindset of greatness to come. So many who have failed before us are quick to proclaim the impossible. Time and time again humans have displayed that the impossible may in fact be nothing more than a lack of imagination.
Sure, but there is still no working Perpetuum Mobile, despite many freaks are working on it.
And I mean, who knows, maybe one of them accidently invents cold fusion in that approach, but most of the time, youthful optimism can be very blinding for reality. (And I mean not the reality of old cynics, who failed to achieve their dreams and conclude that since they could not make it work, why should the young and dumb ones succed, who lack experience and skills)
But actual reality, with physical boundaries of time and matter.
But nothing was impossible with this project, it was just lots of work, so congratulations.
Pic of the movie piano: http://manapop.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/vlcsnap-2014-0...
“It was the only feature film written by Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss), who wrote the story, screenplay and lyrics.”
Of course, you could argue that there is merit to having low keys whose fundamental is below human hearing because the overtones would still be audible. But that seems to be of pretty limited use to me.
At the upper end it's perfectly possible to reach the end of the treble scale, so maybe the 97 key Bösendorfer has extra treble keys in addition to extra bass keys. I haven't seen one though.
They have an elaborate explanation of why they did it, and they are a commercial outfit, but the basic reason still seems to be "we wanted to see if we could".
This was surprising for me, I thought no way is this almost the range of hearing.
But a quick calculation showed it to be right: The range of human hearing is approximately from 20Hz to 20kHz which is ~10 octaves (20*2^10 ~= 20k). 10 octaves would need 120keys, so ~2.5 Octaves more than the 88 keys range.
We had a _long_ day that day!
I hope that one day I'll be able to play one of the real models, but until then The Giant is my favorite virtual piano because of how massive it sounds.
Tiny hammers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AB7dXFWhMNU
Bass strings: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ijUKBIxeAS4
Fishing line: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-KHIJk4Yx8
Guitar string: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RyjoXVDqUs
I suspect you are right, I studied a bit of classical guitar and I know for a fact that plucking the strings near the bridge or near the fretboard creates very different sounds. It is probably a similar problem with pianos.
<meta name="generator" content="CMS Tool www.cms-tool.net" />
As someone who enjoys playing piano but doesn't have the space nor acoustic insulation for a real one, it's great being able to not just get the sound of different pianos whenever I want, but also virtually design my own. Modeling technology has really come a long way.
That's not to say that if I ever own a large enough house I wouldn't want an acoustic piano :-)
To install Pianoteq on a Raspberry Pi, it's a single script that sets everything up: https://github.com/youfou/pianoteq-pi
It's also fun to play around with alternative tuning systems, try different hammers, soundboard characteristics, etc etc.
I'm still not sure what _sort_ of modeling it's doing (surely not full FEA of the entire vibrating system), but I'm sure we'll get there in another few years of GPGPU...
One curious thing I noticed from the (simpler) string modeling synth in my keyboard is that if you up the dispersion it starts sounding like a bell... and indeed Pianoteq also has a very nice tubular bells patch. Explains what that's doing in a piano synth :)
It'd be interesting to know what the railsback curve looks like for this long piano; I'd expect it to be a lot flatter.
I imagine you could also flatten out the curve on the treble end by using thinner gauge wire, but I suppose there's probably a trade-off in terms of volume or durability, otherwise all pianos would use thin wire for the treble strings. (I think most pianos use wire that's a little thinner in the treble, but not by much. I might be wrong about that, though.)
Due to the stiffness of real strings, the overtones do not occur at even multiples of the fundamental frequency.
This means that when tuning a piano, you need to compromise between tuning so that the fundamentals are in tune with distant notes but having the overtones sound discordant with nearby notes, or having sweet overtone matching with nearby notes, causing notes to be very far off when harmonizing at longer distances across the keyboard.
With my upright, I've had more success tuning more based on the fundamental than on the overtones, because it has enough inharmonicity that tuning to the overtones causes right-hand-to-left-hand harmonies to sound noticeably off. But this makes single-hand chords sound messier.
A piano with looooooooooooooooong bass strings can have skinnier strings that are flexible and behave closer to ideal, so you don't have to compromise as much when tuning.
The square root magnifies the effect of increasing the length, so you get a lot from making the piano a bit longer. The project is a wonderful idea.
Software synthesized pianos implement this too because it's part of how we expect piano-based instruments to sound.
Normally, the lowest few octaves on a piano all sound a little weird; the individual notes are a little hard to tell apart and multiple low notes played together often blend into a rumbly mess. This is because the strings for those notes are shorter than they should be for their frequencies -- they're artificially made to vibrate at a lower frequency by making the strings heavier.
This effect seems to be significantly reduced on the Alexander piano.
I feel like the lower notes are much more distinct and separate but might just be imagining it.
The sound of inharmonicity comes from dispersion -- different frequencies travel through the string at different velocities. The lower the frequency, the less the wave notices the stiffness of the string, so to speak, and the stiffer the string the quicker a wave will travel through it. If you've ever tapped on a wire fence or played with a slinky, you'll be familiar with the "pew" sound. A pure impulse consists of all frequencies at once, but when it's traveled through the fence, bounced off a post, and come back, you hear the high frequencies first, which is why the "pew" descends in frequency.
Anyway, I've found that you can notice this on the attacks of bass notes on pianos. Only the very lowest notes of the Alexander piano seem to really have it audible, and even then it's much more slight.
And this model explains why the inharmonicity is higher on the attacks (higher vibration amplitude increases bending of the string).
Stiffness causes there to basically be a radius of curvature in the string when you apply a force. The boundary condition of a guitar string is that the displacement and first derivative of displacement of the string are zero at both ends. So, this radius of curvature will be visible there. But, even when plucking a string, rather than having a sharp peak at the plectrum, it will necessarily be similarly smoothed out. (Though, through time in a frequency-dependent way.)
In the wave equation, stiffness involves a factor with a coefficient proportional to Young's modulus. Based on the stress/strain graphs I could find, Young's modulus of a guitar string increases with tension, increasing inharmonicity. Of course, the pitch of the string also increases with tension, so there's a lot going on.
(I have to admit that the zero-first-derivative boundary condition having no additional effect is coming from my intuitions about linearity of solutions to the wave equation, but maybe it still has some interesting effect. I think the overall effect of stiffness would dominate this one, however.)
Some things I was looking at:
The A0 key on a piano is 27 Hz. The frequency is so low it stops sounding like a single tone, and it almost sounds like the string is flopping around.
The low notes on a conventional piano are a rumbly mess, but we're used to them.
Hearing a piano design with much cleaner bass overtones is a real shock.
This video does a good job of explaining it in a relatively short and simple way, but goes in-depth enough that even people with an understanding of music might learn something:
When designing a string or percussion instrument (or any resonator, in general, I suppose) one of the challenges is ensuring that you aren't creating undesired harmonics. With something like a piano with hundreds or thousands of strings that might be induced to resonate undesirably if even slightly out, or whose own movement might alter other parts and affect them, it becomes a significant challenge.
In a piano, the bass and treble strings have a lot of inharmonicity. They don't behave like ideal strings for various reasons, so the harmonics aren't exact multiples of the fundamental frequency. Piano tuners deal with this be stretching the octave, so that the piano sounds in tune even though it kind of isn't.
Having a super long bass string instead of a short double-wound bass string probably behaves more like an ideal string (with harmonics that are closer to whole-number multiples of the fundamental), so it should sound like it has a more definite pitch and less like a gong.
Interestingly, we don't really perceive the fundamental frequencies of the low notes in a piano much at all in the first place. If you filter them out, the notes will sound about the same -- we take most of our perceptual cues from the higher harmonics, and our brain just inserts the implied bass fundamental. In the same way, playing a major chord sort of implies a bass note a couple octaves below the root of the chord -- if all the harmonics are there, then we expect it to be there.
Wow! Of course! Lightbulb moment. This isn’t something that occurred to me independently but makes so much sense I wonder how it hadn’t, and it explains a lot of what chords are really all about.
Minor chords are a 10:12:15 ratio, which kind of looks like a bunch of arbitrary chosen numbers, but we could rewrite that as 60/6 : 60/5 : 60/4 and then it sort of make sense that minor would be a sort of mathematical reciprocal of the major. Minor chords can be interpreted either as the 10th, 12th, and 15th harmonics of some bass note or as the first three prime subharmonics that are integer divisions of the fundamental note. Subharmonics don't really occur in nature, though.
You can sing in any tuning though. If you want to hear just-intonation 4:5:6:7 chords, listen to barbershop music, where this chord is a defining part of the style. See:
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPb2hMJ9Ojk around 3:00
"The Hero's Journey" involves the hero in Act I embarking on a quest. In Act II unforeseen difficulties beset him, maybe he doubts himself, the quest changes, and HE changes. In Act III, he completes the maybe-different task, as a changed person.
So this guy enacted some of that journey, and I admire him so much for it.
I think it's trivial. I didn't say I can estimate how long the hard parts will take, just what the hard parts will be. If I don't understand something, I estimate that it will take a long time.
A very good introduction video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48RVcbkhNHQ
Here in St. Louis, the organ at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis was built over decades, and one of the ranks (sets of pipes) has pipes that are so long, they were formed in a semi-circle so they would fit within the building.
One of those pipes (a low note) was stuck on one time, and it caused a bit of a vibration in the whole place, and the organist had to turn off the pipe organ until someone could come fix the broken valve!
But it's amazing seeing how there were pipes jammed literally in every nook and cranny and closet in that place—and from what I hear that's not even that massive an installation!
Turns out it's played with marbles instead, which is just as cool.
Specifically this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hyCIpKAIFyo
The best of the youtube collection he shares seems to be https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k54XzhuACrg for judging the quality of the piano - I hear what seems to be a longer than usual reverb on the lower strings but possibly I'm just imagining it: could be the space itself or I'm just paying particular attention to it as a pianist, to compare to my own. Oh, and this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uPb2hMJ9Ojk&t=186s
For the rest of us who want to play around with piano lengths, there is an awesome physically modelled piano software plugin called Pianoteq by modartt (https://www.modartt.com/). This is a virtual instrument, but rather than taking the conventional approach of sampling a real instrument, instead this is a model of strings, hammers, sound board etc. This means that the model can be modified to produce a synthetic instrument with different properties. There is a 'length' parameter which allows you to modify the model to be up to 10m long if I remember. There are lots of cool and subtle effects to be had from altering how the hammers behave (how hard they are, the overtones they produce, where on the string they strike etc) to how the piano is tuned (how the unison strings are detuned, how stretched the octaves are etc).
The video of the Liszt Funerailles performance towards the bottom was the only one I found that demonstrates what makes this instrument unique.
Most recently, he replaced the hammers on the piano with real hammers, with interesting results.
In the past he also replaced the piano strings with bass guitar strings.
A youtube comment asks if it is "Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini" by Rachmaninoff, but no answer.
It's a piece for piano and orchestra, but you can find transcriptions for solo piano (e.g., in IMSLP https://imslp.hk/files/imglnks/euimg/2/20/IMSLP329319-PMLP05... )