It's funny because just today Adam and I were having a discussion about alternative controllers and the construction thereof, and he said (and I paraphrase) that while alternative controllers were nice and all, the music that results is usually pretty whack. I mentioned Jarre's laser harp as quod erat demonstrandum (an observation for which I will no doubt be pilloried by AI readers who like that sort of mind-numbingly tedious dreck) and then, lo and furthermore hark, I stumble upon this.
When I see phrases like "[t]he use of light instead of a physical string plays with our perception of space and matter" I automatically think "oh, god, here we go again." I seem to be one of the few people that believe that perceiving space and matter is hard enough normally, without grad students fucking with it all the time. But this particular iteration of the oft-recurring laser harp and its ilk is actually semi-nifty. If you look at it as a sonic sculpture or installation, rather than the world's most ridiculous musical instrument, it kind of seems like something that wouldn't be a bad time.
There are even some modules that fit in to the pro audio world. Check out the AP-1, which is a mic pre, env follower, and compressor module, absolutely perfect for running vocals and other instruments in to your modular. (Why someone didn't do this before is utterly beyond me.) Also, the AI-2, which gives your modular balanced inputs and outputs (handy as hell, that) and the VC-FC, which is a forward compressor with voltage control of every parameter. As someone who makes heavy use of compression as an effect, this would be right up my alley.