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Turning E-Waste and Vintage Electronics into Music

Turning E-Waste and Vintage Electronics into Music

Image source: flytrapgear.com

With the rapid obsolescence of electronics and the urge to constantly upgrade to the latest new gadget, we’re rapidly creating mountains of electronic waste (e-waste) that is full of potentially toxic materials such as lead, mercury and hexavalent chromium. Much of that e-waste ends up in the landfill, where it can pollute air and soil and water, instead of at electronics recyclers, where the resources that go into making the electronics could be reclaimed.

And when most of us hear about the e-waste problem, the most we’re willing to do to help mitigate it is by properly recycling our gadgets (which can be quite effective). But one man wants to do something quite a bit different with these bits of obsolete electronics, which is to use recycled and vintage electronic components to build musical instruments, and he needs a little help from you.

Chiron Bramberger‘s Kickstarter project, “Trash Secret – A Musical Journey Inside Technology” aims to take our most powerful technology and start a creative revolution with it. By making new art, hardware, and software out of recycled computer parts, Bramberger wants to inspire both music lovers and music makers, with both his hardware and software designs eventually being made open source.

Bramberger’s already got a little recycled hardware business going, with the first project being a prototype of a new type of effects device, the Dragonfly. This all-analog effects pedal can be used with a variety of different musical and electronics gear, such as old video game systems, synthesizers, computers, and other recording gear. Dragonfly is made from as much as 80% recycled components, and is said to “provide a novel, crunchy sound for a truly neo-retro experience.” He’s also got a Wiki started, which can serve to provide information and inspiration for those looking to create new and interesting designs from old electronic circuits, and therefore help to divert e-waste from landfills.

For more information on the Trash Secret project, see the Kickstarter campaign page.

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