Jul 29

Piano Stairs

Piano Stairs


A study  in Northern Europe found a stairway served by static steps and an escalator and watched the behaviour of the public as they passed through.  The overwhelming majority of them took the escalator and ignored the steps.  The researchers then had a bit of a makeover and over-night installed sensors and step covers to turn the static steps into a playable piano.  As dawn breaks and the thoroughfare becomes busy, people are drawn to the steps and the scales they are playing as they ascend or descend the steps.  People even stop, either individually or in groups and try to pick out more complicated melodies and even jump in unison to create a harmony or chord.  The result is almost a 66% increase in step use against the remaining 33% give or take a few points.  Have a look at this short video and see it in action.  Amazing to think a simple piano changed the habits of a local population.  I don’t know if it’s still in operation but I imagine it’s not, I could believe it could become tiresome over a long period, and the novelty factor would drop pretty rapidly, but it was a nice idea while the experiment was on-going.


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