Programming offers incredible possibilities for music creation, and with the free Processing development environment for Mac, Windows, and Linux, even non-programmers can get into the artistic horizons of code. But code doesn’t always think like composers do. That’s why the new sound library jm-Etude looks promising:

New sound library: jm-Etude [Code & form]

jm-Etude for Processing, and the Java library jMusic on which it’s based, allow you to structure your code more musically with notes, phrases, parts, and scores. Combine this with the Sonia synthesis library for Processing (or, for Java development, the corresponding JSyn plug-in), and you have a serious compositional environment. I can also see this as appealing to people coming from the land of Csound and wanting something that lets them code notes and other musically-useful units.

I’d love to see a similar library that helps deal with performance environments, helping structure into scenes and elements — Chris from Pixelsumo was just asking me how you might use Processing in a VJ performance. For live music or visuals, it’d be helpful to have a library that lets you structure what you’re doing over time for performance. Anyone know if there’s something like this already out there (short of coding the thing yourself, which might ultimately be better)?

[Updated:] I missed the major point of this, which is that it lets you use Processing as an interactive MIDI sequencer. (Follow that link for a promising-looking interactive table, built in the “app no one wants to use any more,” Director.)

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