Play a Great-Sounding Theremin in Your Web Browser: Distraction of the Day

If you want an explanation for why you’d want to build sophisticated audio into the Web, maybe it’s just because you don’t like fun. Fun is what you get out of this Web Audio Theremin toy, the work of one Luke Phillips of Femur Design. The web audio theremin is a touch friendly & responsive audio synthesizer built in javascript using the Web Audio API with HTML5 canvas. As the user interacts with the screen synthesized sounds are generated in the style of a moog theremin and the canvas displays a visual representation of the audio. “Theremin” is a loose …

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Moby Opens Up Project Files for Remixing in Ableton, Pro Tools [Exclusive Details, VIP Code]

What do you do when you’ve been one of the biggest impacts on electronic music, outlasting a succession of trends and fads, remaining one of the best-known names in sound? I mean, you can’t just start giving things away, right? Actually, if you’re Moby, that’s exactly what you do. He wants you to collaborate with him – and he’s made it really easy (even if you want to get something out of the result). It’s safe to say Moby is different from many of his peers. At the young age of 48, Moby has managed to be a presence in …

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Gazing Back at You: Responsive Typography and Face Tracking [Source]

Camera input is at last going from waving your arms around in front of the screen to some genuinely compelling ideas. And the more designers use the camera in fluid ways, the more expressive video may be as a means of interaction. Croatian designer Marko Dugonjić demonstrates a proof-of-concept implementation of typography that responds to your position. Using facial tracking, the text scales based on the distance of your face to the screen. The transitions are a bit jarring now, but it’s enough to suggest how this might work. http://webdesign.maratz.com/lab/responsivetypography/ There’s source code available for the head tracking on which …

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Creative Coding, Evolved: Processing Nears 2.0 Release With Hot-Looking Beta 9

There’s a reason for Processing’s popularity. By making code simple, elegant, and direct, and catering directly to the kinds of visual ideas creative people have, the environment has made programming accessible to artists and designers in a way nothing else could. Coding no longer has to be a source of fear, or a bad word. But Processing, years into its life, has also badly needed a refresh. 2.0 is more than just a house cleaning. It’s a new direction, with “modes” that mean it’s no longer tied to old desktop Java architectures. (See a tantalizing screenshot below – with the …

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In addition to a cleaner browser layout, SoundCloud is bringing more functionality to mobile, starting Thursday. Images courtesy SoundCloud.

New SoundCloud, Now For Everyone: What’s New, Screenshots and Analysis

For some months, a lot of us have been using an overhauled SoundCloud interface. Playback works better, and everything is bigger, clearer, and more usable. A lot has changed, but I think the simplest endorsement is this: I haven’t wanted to go back to the old version, ever. Today, SoundCloud is launching that new UI for everyone. They’re also taking the opportunity to tout just how much usage they’re getting. SoundCloud’s founders have routinely told people they believe sound and music will be essential media for the Internet, making comparisons to video. Now, they have some numbers. There are 10 …

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syitcases

SJS-ONE: Open, Arduino-Based Synth, with Crazy Cases and Web Troubleshooting

SJS-ONE is an 8-bit synth that you add to an Arduino board, making it ideal for hardware and firmware tinkerers and lovers of unique monosynths. But we’ll give it bonus points for two other reasons. First, it has some really bizarre cases available as add-ons, which look a bit like punk birdhouses. (Birdhouse squats? Hot rodded bird tenant buildings?) Second, in a really clever move, they help you troubleshoot hardware issues with a Flash animation. It could make it clear even to a complete beginner how to use a multimeter (a measuring device that checks electrical connections). The Arduino design …

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aviary_myna

Cloud Music Making, Just Vapor? Amidst Shifting Businesses, Standards, Aviary Closes Shop

Doing creative work in the browser has, over the years, delivered a fair bit of hype. What it hasn’t delivered is a tool with any real apparent staying power. And as we watch the meltdown of creative Web poster child Aviary’s music suite, caught between changing business models and evolving standards, there’s reason for concern. That’s not to say that Web-based music making can’t work. But it certainly isn’t working like this. Aviary had been a key example of powerful in-browser editing tools, with an extensive suite of tools built in Flash. But Aviary switched their business model, focusing instead …

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With 'This Exquisite Forest,' Animations That Evolve, Collaboratively

With all this talk about the future of art being in browser windows and such, you might forget to ask the question – why? What will it actually look like? Artist Aaron Koblin has been, perhaps more than any one artist, someone who has pondered what form art made by online crowds might take. His work has often revolved around data – the trails left by masses moving in the air, data set of Thom Yorke’s 3D face given to artists. When the crowd is the source of that data, Koblin has uniquely walked the line between optimism and criticism. …

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With ‘This Exquisite Forest,’ Animations That Evolve, Collaboratively

With all this talk about the future of art being in browser windows and such, you might forget to ask the question – why? What will it actually look like? Artist Aaron Koblin has been, perhaps more than any one artist, someone who has pondered what form art made by online crowds might take. His work has often revolved around data – the trails left by masses moving in the air, data set of Thom Yorke’s 3D face given to artists. When the crowd is the source of that data, Koblin has uniquely walked the line between optimism and criticism. …

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musicbranches

Music in the Browser: A Soundtrack from a Crowd, A Keyboard for a Mouse

Slowly but surely, the web audio API creeps toward being something that’s usable in more than one browser at a time. In the meantime, we get a glimpse of how generative music could be a part of what’s to come. It’s a long way from those horrid, looping audio files that plagued the Web in its heady 1990s adolescence. Today on Create Digital Motion, I look at the aesthetics of crowd-sourcing in work by Aaron Koblin and Chris Milk – and how the view of the significance of the crowd has changed over time. Substitute “music” for “motion,” and you’ll …

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