EECS 397: Digital Luthier

Quarter Offered

Spring : 2:30-5:30 M ; Pardo


Permission by Instructor only (see below)


Digital Luthier studies Human Computer Interaction through the lens of artistic creation. The course lies at the intersection of design, engineering, and musicianship. This course will introduce students to fundamentals of creating their own musical instruments using modern technology. We will explore the influence and feedback between the tool (e.g. an instrument), the tool user (a musician/producer), and the creative output (the music). Along the way, we will learn about user interaction design, embedded computing (using arduino), sensor technology, signal creation and interpretation (using Max/MSP or PureData), and musicality (using your sensibilities as a musician). Students will create a new musical instrument by the end of the course and the final examination will be a performance using their instrument. NOTE: As a requirement of the course, students must attend a 2-day all-weekend hardware hacking for music workshop in May.​

  • The Digital Luthier Course in Spring term is cross-listed in both EECS and in SAI. In EECS it is 397 sect 5  and in SAI it is  SAI 402-0 Sec. 21

ADMISSION RESTRICTIONS: This course enrollment is by instructor permission only and will be limited to 20 people. PLEASE NOTE: The course is now full and at capacity.

Please fill out application and provide information on your background and interests. Students will be chosen from the list of those who fill out the form.