In the late ‘90s, a little creature called the “Furby” was introduced by Tiger Electronics. Resembling a strange fusion between an owl and a rodent, these animatronic creatures squeaked their way into our collective hearts and/or nightmares. 20 years later, a horde of these interactive toys has been converted into a MIDI-controlled choir by none other than the musical hacker extraordinaire known as LOOK MUM NO COMPUTER.
If you were to view this device from the bottom up, it would appear to be a more or less traditional organ, with a keyboard and knobs that may have been repaired or hacked at some point. Your first clue that this is something very strange is going on would be the switch labeled “collective awakening.”
As your gaze moved to the top, you would then be shocked to find 44 Furbies arranged as a tiny, colorful, and creepy organ seen in the video here.
The project was conceived seven years ago, and after obtaining enough of these little furballs to get his instrument to work, LOOK MUM NO COMPUTER finally got his little choir to sing together. Each Furby is driven by two separate Arduino boards, which control sequencing and give each one a specific note to produce its own individual sound.
You can find more background on this build below, which certainly took countless hours of soldering and troubleshooting to get working.