This interesting animation is an argument for how a self-playing harp might work. The one thing that would improve its efficiency is to have a "plucker" that is dedicated to each string (as you see on the bass part of this contraption) rather than have each plucker pick at any or all of the strings. What do you think?
You can learn more at Animusic.
Isn't a harp with a plucker for each string essentially just a harpsichord?
I don't think it's trying to be efficient. If you want that use an MP3 player, as that's also a device for making attractive sounds.
I'd be fasinated to see if it could be built. Probably nothing that beautiful look as you'd need lots of wires, motors or hydraulics to power everything.
I think some of their animations are marvellous, although I tend to prefer some of the earlier, percussive ones. I haven't seen all of Animusic 3, though.
Love the time signatures.