Nope. You won’t see the little drummer boy that you are used to seeing around this time of the year in that picture. You know how some technophobes (and even technophiles) say that people will one day be replaced by machines? Well, this is a great example of how that is totally possible.
YouTube user bd594 apparently had some time on his hands, so he decided to tinker around with an HP scanner – the flatbed kind, obviously, a snare drum, and some other electronic items. His masterpiece? A two-gadget band rendering its own version of the Little Drummer Boy. Yes, that ubiquitous piece of Christmas music that I am pretty sure you have gotten enough of by this time.
I will not deny it – this rendition is not the best that you will ever hear. In fact, you can hear the flaws even if you are not a musical genius. However, how many times do you get to see and hear an HP scanner and a robot snare drum play the Little Drummer Boy? This guy’s handiwork needs to be given a chance, I say. Heck, he even explains how difficult it was for him – and I can’t make heads or tails out of it:
“This project was a really difficult, it was 70% timing and 30% execution. There are alot of YouTube videos with floppies and stepper motors playing songs. These motors have a quick response time because they are not under a heavy load. The problem with a flatbed scanner is moving the large carriage head. It was not designed to move quickly and when it is playing music you will notice the head changes directions. This is to prevent the carriage from smashing into the chassis. As the notes are playing the carriage head has to periodically change direction and this can add many seconds to a 3 or 4 minute song. This takes extra programming to compensate for these delays. As for the drums they are just a couple of solenoids connected to a pulley system in order to ampilfy the movement. The solenoids are used and have very slow response time, you may notice a few beats are missed during the drum rolls. Believe me when I say I have a new respect for drummers.”