Sound Visualization Through a Swarm of Fireflies

  • Ana RodriguesEmail author
  • Penousal Machado
  • Pedro Martins
  • Amílcar Cardoso
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9273)


An environment to visually express sound is proposed. It is based on a multi-agent system of swarms and inspired by the visual nature of fireflies. Sound beats are represented by light sources, which attract the virtual fireflies. When fireflies are close to light they gain energy and, as such, their bioluminescence is emphasized. Although real world fireflies do not behave as a swarm, our virtual ones follow a typical swarm behavior. This departure from biological plausibility is justified by aesthetic reasons: the desire to promote fluid visualizations and the need to convey the perturbations caused by sound events. The analysis of the experimental results highlights how the system reacts to a variety of sounds, or sequence of events, producing a visual outcome with distinct animations and artifacts for different musical pieces and genres.


Swarm intelligence Computer art Multi-agent systems Sound visualization 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ana Rodrigues
    • 1
    Email author
  • Penousal Machado
    • 1
  • Pedro Martins
    • 1
  • Amílcar Cardoso
    • 1
  1. 1.CISUC, Deparment of Informatics EngineeringUniversity of CoimbraCoimbraPortugal

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