thisismyjam

The music Web is now so closed, you can’t share your favorite song

Jam Supercut from Matthew Ogle on Vimeo. Call it a jam session that has completely fallen apart. Having Web services go dark is certainly not news in this day and age. We’ve come to expect that Internet services won’t be there forever. (Google Reader, anyone?) But if you pull apart some of the backstory behind the end of a service called “This Is My Jam,” you’ll come across an unnerving reality of the way music on the Web is evolving (or devolving). This Is My Jam began life as a kind of hack – pick your one and only favorite …

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pedalboard

Guitar Stompbox in Your Browser? Web Audio Adds Line In, iPhone Support, More

Watching a skyscraper go up is always fascinating. For a long time, the thing basically looks like a bit pit in the ground. After some time, you get the beginnings of a skeleton. Suddenly, the structure rises at a near-impossible pace, climbing into the clouds faster than you’d imagine. Then, it’s at a point when it looks finished, but isn’t – there’s this final, agonizing push to make it really inhabitable for everyone. Yep, new standards are often the same way. Web audio had, in comparison to conventional native development, looked largely like that gaping hole in the ground for …

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11-green-skube-laptop

Radio in an Online Age, Made Tangible: Skube Are Smart, Last.fm + Spotify Speakers

Computers give you sophisticated ways of connecting to online music. But do you ever miss that physical object of the radio? Or wish that a speaker could be just as smart when, with a sigh of relief, you’ve pressed the laptop lid shut? Skube is a design experiment from Copenhagen focused on making portable devices more connected and communal sharing easier. They’re speakers that you might consider members of the Internet of Things, using Arduino and Xbee wireless networking to make the device mobile while piping sounds from Spotify and Last.fm. Here’s some demo footage of the speakers in action: …

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Instagrammed padKONTROL (CC-BY) Daz Heath.

Make Renoise into an MPC-Style Groovebox: Pking, padKONTROL

Music production tools like Renoise have a tremendous amount of power. But what if you could program grooves with the kind of touch-a-pad workflow offered by something like the MPC? In the latest example of users doing wild things with the powerful API in tri-platform tracker Renoise, mxb attempts to make a sort of Renoise MPC. It’s all made possible with the Korg padKONTROL drum controller. And he’s looking for testers – yes, while there may be a handful of people with this rig, you can bet many of them read CDM. mxb writes: This tool is for the (unfortunately …

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Touch iOS Music in a New Way: Hands-on with Cantor for Users, Inside Details for Developers

Don’t fret. An iPad can open up new ways of touching musical ideas. What if you could touch sound more directly, using sophisticated sensing to play between most common notes – even with hundreds of levels of microtonal pitch? Cantor lets you do just that – and it’s here now, proving that Apple will indeed allow the use of a little-known API for sensing finger area. (Hey, Apple: please, please keep this around, as it’s essential to making the iPad more expressive.) It’s an important development, and it’s real and something you can use right now, today. So, we provide …

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midistuff

MIDI in the Browser: HTML5 + MIDI Document Up for Review, Audio Improving, Too

Hey, why the heck not? (CC-BY-SA) farnea. Imagine connecting to MIDI gadgets – inputs and outputs – and sequencing musical patterns from a browser. (As a developer, imagine doing that from JavaScript. As a user, imagine doing that right inside your browser window with a music app.) For now, such things exist only on a document, but they could be coming to a browser near you. Not bad for a standard that dates back to 1983. The W3C has a document up for discussion, for those of you technical enough to get involved: https://dvcs.w3.org/hg/audio/raw-file/tip/midi/specification.html The news comes from an excellent, …

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vibephones

From Sounds to Wave Patterns to iPhone Cases, a Design Made from Footsteps

Adorn your iPhone with audio, courtesy 3D printers Shapeways and an unusual use of the SoundCloud API to get at the data. The content we watch on the Internet is, ultimately, just data. We view that data in fairly narrow, conventional ways, but there’s no reason that has to be the limit. In one of the more novel applications of the API for audio-storing service SoundCloud, one 3D printer is happily turning your music tracks and recordings into custom iPhone cases, each uniquely based on the waveform of your sounds. This week in Austin at South by Southwest, SoundCloud was …

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renoisestep16

More Renoise Step Sequence Goodness: Launchpad + Lauflicht (Other Controllers, Too)

There’s a beautiful immediacy and tactile quality to hardware step sequencers. And there’s all the flexibility, convenience, and power of software. Solution: combine them. We’ve been following various custom creations for the music production tool Renoise – the latest being a lovely performance grid, and back in 2009, the beginnings of Launchpad grid sequencing. You can thank Renoise’s powerful API, which allows its users to modify the way the app works with surprising ease (at least for the hack-inclined), all for free. The latest is Lauflicht, an 8-, 16-, or 32-step step sequencer for the Novation Launchpad controller (or, alternatively, …

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mhdmtl-hard_at_work

Face Sequencers, Sonic Databases, Automatic Dub Remixes, More Montreal Music Hackday Hacks

Hard at work at Music Hack Day Montréal. Ed.: Hacking Web databases to search sounds, remixing tools to automatically create dub tunes, cameras to sequence and analyze images in new ways, Montréal hackers have been busy. Trevor Knight writes from the event with full coverage from Canada, latest outpost of this global music coding phenomenon: Music Hack Day made its first appearance in Canada at the end of September, painting the event with a Montréal flavour, complete with bilingualism, Montréal-style bagels, and even an appearance of Stephen Harper in a hack. Over the Saturday-Sunday event, musicians, programmers, and hackers scramble …

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renoisekeyzone

Renoise 2.7 Arrives; Q+A on Free Puremagnetik Sounds; Hacks to Come?

Renoise 2.7 is now available, following some eight weeks of testing by the community. The update, which the developers describe as “back to the beats” in reference to focusing in this release cycle on musical workflow, delivers plenty of features that make the modern tracker more modern. I wrote about them back in March, with some detailed Q&A from the developers – including tips on where to get started: Renoise 2.7 Adds Sample and Slice Savvy; Tips and Inside Info from the Developers The short version: better automation, sample slicing, and sample keyzones, plus improved DSP and audio routing and …

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