And the answer is … this real-time music production software is used for instantaneous sound effects and music clips needed in the fast-paced world of two popular game questions.

What is … Ableton Live?

Veteran sound pro Barbara Hagan describes to how she works with both programs:

Now I have two computers with Live; one is my main computer (new MacBook with 2.16 processor), and one is a back up (G4 PowerBook). I currently use Live on both computers, and I’m constantly busy building cues during two days of taping, six shows a day, on Wheel of Fortune, five a day for Jeopardy. I transfer new cues from CDs right into iTunes, then edit them in Live. I transfer info to my backups with flash drives and build folders for post production use every day we tape. I store everything, and back up three times everywhere. Guess I’ve ended up being the keeper of the music, safe and intact. Sometimes it’s pretty crazy, but mostly it’s fun. And it all started because of Live!

Now, music tool developers are regularly touting various “celebrity” users and pro applications for their product. But, of course, what makes this especially interesting is that Ableton Live was never designed to perform this task. It just happens that Live is the only general-purpose music software that tackles how to do live, real-time sound, not just as a plug-in but by baking what amounts to sampling features into the app itself. Years later, there’s been little response from anything else. It also demonstrates that certain general capabilities can have applications for users you haven’t thought of, particularly if there’s some fundamental utility to them (like triggering sounds easily).

Something to think about, not only in respect to Live, but if you’re building your own tools in programs like Max or even just working on tweaking your own live performance music setup.

Thanks, Marcel Ramagnano! Photo: xbeachy.