Niels Böttcher




  • 32-2 Dynamic sound design (SIL)
  • 41-a Game Audio (electives)
  • 42-a Interaction Design (electives)
  • 42-c Future of sound / fremtidens lyd (electives)

7. semester

• Supervisor of bachelor thesis

Niels Böttcher is educated from Aalborg University in Copenhagen, with a masters degree in media technology and a Ph.d within the field of procedural audio for computer games.
He is furthermore the co-founder of the danish independent record label Jenka Music and performs in various live acts.
Recently he also founded the company Jenka sound design, working as a consultance on various interaction - and sound design projects. 

At the sonic college Niels is responsible for the following courses:

32-2 Dynamic Sound Design
In this course the students are introduced to the basics of dynamic sound design. The course gives an introduction to jingles, Foley recordings, game audio and interactive sound in general. 
As part of the course the students are asked to make an interactive sound installation and dynamic sound for a premade Unity3D computer game, using the game audio middleware Fabric.

41-1Game Audio
This course is one of the longer elective courses where the students get the possibility to specialize in game audio.
In order to learn how to produce interactive audio for a game, it is also relevant for the sound designer to understand the basic technology behind a computer game. Because of that the students will first of all learn how to program using the C# scripting language. 

During the course the student will learn how to design a game in the Unity3D engine and program the entire game using c#.
Besides from this the student will get a basic introduction to a middleware program allowing for the sound to be implemented and compiled with the game. Middleware software that have been taught includes FMOD and Fabric as examples. 
The student will learn how to design reward sounds, various techniques to avoid repetitive sound effects, how to build up dynamic atmospheres, dynamic mixing, how to get the sound to take up as little memory as possible, procedural audio, adaptive composition and much more. 
As part of the course a final asignment will be given where the student gets 4 weeks to design and implement a small computer game including all the dynamic sound design.

42-a Interaction design
In this course the student will learn about basic interaction design. As part of this course the student will learn how to build and program prototypes of musical interfaces. In doing so the student will learn how to program in the visual scripting language Max/MSP. Max/MSP is a strong tool for implementing fast prototypes and also to design interactive and complex sound design. Furthermore it is a strong tool for designing digital signal processing and control systems for MIDI, OSC or similar protocols. Max/MSP is now integrated in the software Ableton Live (Max4Live) which makes it possible to combine the two programs.
The student will get an in-depth introduction to this tool, sound synthesis techniques in Max/MSP and will furthermore learn about basic sensors, basic electronics, and how to connect various sensors to Max/MSP using the Arduino prototyping board. 
We will discuss various interaction design strategies and techniques and the students will end up designing a musical performance tool for live-usage.

42-c Future of Sound (fremtidens lyd)
This course introduces the student to alternative or future-usages of sound design. The student will learn how to use sound to motivate, assist and inform humans about various aspects.
During the course the student will be introduced to topics such auditory icons, earcons and many other topics within the umbrealla of sonification. We will discuss how to use sound to represent data, how to use sound to guide humans, and how to use sound to inform humans about various aspects.  
During this course the students will get the possibility to work on a topic of their own interest as well as a tool of their own interest. As many of the projects involves a great deal of interaction, tools could typically be Unity3D, Max/MSP or PD or similar. 
During the course the students will be presented for different possible future possibilities of sound design such as mobile adaptive audio, sound design for hospitals/wellfare technology, future music releases, big Data sonification and much more.
During the course there will also be lectures in the visual programming language Max/MSP along with the interaction design course.