Otomata, A Generative Online Sequencer; Apps versus Web, Plus SuperCollider Goodies

Behold the power of the Web: composition ideas become a tool, a tool becomes a means for even casual users sharing musical sketches, and a browser toy can be a window into a Turkish sound artist breeding musical DNA like some people breed strains of flowers. Otomata is a simple generative online grid-based sequencer, owing to a number of step sequencers and Toshio Iwai’s Tenori-on, with some beautiful circular visualizations of the resulting sounds. I’m late in posting it, but in a way, that’s a good thing – in the time that this sequencer has spread around the Web, it’s …


Isle of Tune: City Simulation as Music Sequencing, Soon to Leap from Browser to Mobile

A music score is, in essence, a way of making space into time: traversing notation from left to right and top to bottom, you move through a series of events. So, why not make that spatial map an actual map, as in the familiar, isometric interactive cityscape popularized by Will Wright’s classic game Sim City? Isle of Tune does just that: lay out trees, houses, and city streets, and you sequence musical patterns as virtual islands. It’s available right now on the Web, powered by Flash – Chrome users can even get a one-click install via the Chrome Web Store. …


Music Made with NYC Subway Schedules; HTML5+Flash, Q+A with Artist-Developer

Alexander Chen transforms the steady pulse of the (actual) New York City subway system into gentle, generative string plucks in his new interactive piece “Conductor.” The visual effect as well as the musical one is mesmerizing, as the subway is viewed in the abstract, sparse geometries of designed Massimo Vignelli’s 1972 diagram. New York subway nerds and long-time residents will note that the schedule itself is from 1972, hence the appearance of the K train and the elevated along Third Avenue (the 8), one I imagine we wish we still had. http://mta.me/ The work is also a glimpse of the …


In Animated Film Ishihara, an Exploration of Color Blindness, All in Dots

Ishihara – English version from Yoav Brill on Vimeo. In an exquisite short film, animator Yoav Brill of Tel Aviv, Israel, tells a story entirely with dots. “Ishihara” draws its name and inspiration from the visual tests used to detect color blindness. The story becomes a poignant reflection on difference. The film was just translated to English; for the original Hebrew, see after the jump. I asked Yoav to tell us more. He produced his own musical score (generously crediting Steve Reich with inspiration) as well as scripting and animating the film.


Augmented Reality CDs into DJ Tools; DJing with SoundCloud, Clock Faces, More

First Augmented Reality Music CD :: Latrama :: Love & Projects :: from musikame on Vimeo. Want the CD as object to come alive again? Here’s yet another approach: make it into an input for webcam-based augmented reality. The album “Love & Projects” by Latrama uses the packaging to trigger augmented reality “DJing” of the playlist. Put the CD in front of your webcam, head to a browser-based tool, and you get turntable controls for playing the album live, complete with scratching, pitch, delay, filter, and volume controls. There are more downloads available, as well. Of course, this raises the …


Social Recording: SoundCloud Adds iOS, Web Record Buttons, More Social Integration

SoundCloud for iPhone from SoundCloud on Vimeo. While it’s easy to focus on one platform or another, a profound trend in 2010 has been toward sharing media in the cloud. The basic concept is as old as the Internet, but from applications like Instamatic for photographers to syncing storage to tote around documents on iPads, this has been a year in which the server-shared media seemed to become a bigger part of our lives. Sound could be next. Aptly-named service SoundCloud has added a big, red “record” button both to an updated iPhone app and the Web browser-based dropbox. That …


AVCLASH: Insane Interactive Audiovisuals, Free in Browser, via Flash

AV Clash – Tag Mash from Video Jack on Vimeo. What if you could witness the birth of life at a microscopic level in some alternate, digital universe? And what if it made a deliciously-raunchy racket? That’s the sense I get looking at AVCLASH, a free audiovisual interactive artwork built in Flash that runs in your browser. The creators describe it to us thusly: AV Clash (www.avclash.com) is a Web-based project by Video Jack (AndrĂ© Carrilho and Nuno Correia, with Gokce Taskan), which allows for the creation of audiovisual compositions, consisting of combinations of sound and audio-reactive animation loops. The …


Adobe versus HTML5? Think Again.

One of the dumbest things I heard tech pundits say this year – and more than a few did, more than a few times – was that somehow HTML5 was a threat to Adobe. The logic goes something like this: 1. Adobe makes Flash. 2. HTML5 does stuff that Flash does. 3. Apple blocks Flash from the iPad and iPhone. They say you can use HTML5 instead. 4. If you use HTML5, you don’t use Flash. 5. Adobe must be in big trouble! Okay, whatever you think of Apple, Adobe, HTML5, or Flash, that doesn’t make any sense at all. …


Preview: The Circus of Lost Souls, in Progress, Marries Flash, Max, Ableton, More

Circus of Lost Souls *Sneak Peek from Momo the Monster on Vimeo. Animation as performance — our friend Momo gives us a little teaser of what has kept him hard at work. If you’re interested in visual work that bridges different tools, there’s some tantalizing stuff here. Have a look, and let him know how you’d like to see him cover this here on the site — specific questions you might have, or techniques you’d like to see. -Ed. The above video is a snippet from a show I’m developing for American Werewolf. Our first performance will be at FreakNight …


A Powerful Music Tracker in Your Browser, Completely Free

Party like it’s 1991 – your browser’s invited. A full-blown music production tool has been directly ported from the desktop to the browser using Flash, modeled with a tracker-style interface for fast, precise music editing. (In fact, a tracker, thanks to speedy entry from a QWERTY keyboard, seems to me an ideal interface for browser music. Trust me – it looks arcane at first, but trackers can be extremely friendly music interfaces. Just be prepared to look like a total geek once you’ve worked it out, because it’ll look even more arcane to everyone else) The resulting tool comes with …