Labanotation: A complicated way to describe human motion also known as Dance


Let’s move off of the MVC path for today, I have been thinking about how do you describe human motion? 

In game design we often like to reconstruct things like motion equations using software algorithm over and over again.  With respect to defining motion, human or avatar, character movement, how do designers do this?  At this time there are no unified methods, in dance there has been a movement toward at least having a method to describe motion after the dance is over using Labanotation.  Labanotation in 2001 was offered up to help in describing motion in animation for example the “Electric Glide”, described as an American Folk Dance is shown at:

Examining the process, and since I am married to a student of dance this comes up in conversation quite often, is a way for others who have never seen the dance to understand how to do it.  I am not sure since I have never danced it outside of weddings and the whole atmosphere.

Unfortunately the software is written for the Mac, as in the older Mac, so you can’t use it on current machines.  I think that this would be a great way to use Silverlight 3.0: Develop a dance notation tool.  Of course being a computer geek ala “the ‘Woz”, I can’t dance worth a hoot.  Yet, the Labanotation seems oddly compelling since it could be used as a generalized process to prototype avatar motion in a way that NON-Computer Scientists can make sense out of.  This could be the F# for Dance majors and graphic artists.  Maybe we could use it to model Steve Wozniak dancing on the show Dancing with the Stars, but then again maybe not.

How to start?

  • Determine if there is an existing tool that we could examine to see if there are improvements
  • Specifications
  • Requirements

This is an interesting concept and one that I am going to investigate as we look at the MVC.

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