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An Absurdly Huge Moog Knob, and OSC Meets CV in Open Source Hardware

Moognify II from Combo Square on Vimeo. Here’s an antidote to the trend toward virtual knobs, touchscreens, and mobility: a big-ass, tangible knob bigger than your head. That may be a slightly impractical idea, but behind it is something absolutely practical: a simple, open source OpenSoundControl to Control Voltage interface. Unlike MIDI’s standard Control Change […]

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Summit Touts Open Source Hardware, Q+A with Co-Creators; Music Hardware?

Summit co-chairs Ayah Bdeir (left) and Alicia Gibb (right) are hoping to galvanize a community around open source hardware, from NASA to Arduino. And that could have an impact on music and audio – if creators of gear for musicians get onboard, that is. Open source software has proven itself in technological, economic, and cultural […]

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Extreme Time-stretched Hamsterdance and Free and Open Source Sound Treasures

Before Bieber, there was Hamsterdance – what in 1998 counted for viral on the Internet. In today’s ever-geekier times, even obscure sound software can go viral. Photo (CC-BY) twodolla / Wendy. In this age of the 24-hour news cycle and instant publication of stories, sometimes it’s good to slow down and wait. And thus, while […]

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Milkymist One, All-in-One Open Source VJ Workstation

Milkymist One is an all-in-one visualist workstation with a permissive open (Creative Commons) license. (The license note says, “Commercial use within the terms of the license is encouraged” — emphasis theirs.) The design is still in-progress and not available for sale, but it looks promising, with complete MIDI and DMX support, plus integrated video input […]

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Vocalize: Vocoder for iOS, Open Source Pitch Correction for Android, Plug-ins

VirSyn have announced one of the nicest effects I’ve seen yet on a mobile platform in the form of iVoxel, a vocoder for iPhone/iPod touch and iPad. On the handhelds, it looks like something you could easily hold up to your mouth and rest atop a synth; on iPad, you get a nicely-sized touchable keyboard […]

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Better Windows Screencasting: Open Source CamStudio with Expanded Support

Don’t let this happen to you. Photo (CC-BY) christa connelly. Recording a screen just isn’t as easy as recording sound, presenting challenges for everyone from visualists documenting work to software imagineers developing software. That means any news in this area on any platform is good news. CamStudio is an open source project descended from the […]

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Velosynth: Bicycle-Mounted Synth is Open Source, Hackable, Potentially Useful

velosynth release#001 from velosynth on Vimeo. Bicycle transport is cheap, environmentally sound, and quiet – a little too quiet. Since bikes don’t make noise, it can be difficult to hear them coming. And since a bicyclist should be focused on the road, any visual feedback to the bicyclist is potentially distracting. What’s the solution? How […]

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x0xb0x, Open Source Hardware and TB-303 Clone, Has a Renewed Future; Q+A

Photo (CC-BY-SA) Brandon Daniel. Open source hardware may not sound like something that would produce a huge musical hit – unless you’ve met the x0xb0x. A clone of Roland’s legendary TB-303 bassline generator, the open version offered not only greater afford-ability than the now-rare antique, but expanded possibilities for hacking the hardware into a musical […]

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Open Source Lead Sheet, Improv Tool, a Free Band-in-a-Box Alternative

Ask a machine to emulate human creativity, and at the very least, you’re guaranteed to learn something. Modeling creative rules and intuitive algorithms as generative code is itself an eminently human activity – think of it as interactive theory. And where the computer fails to sound like a human, you learn something, too. Improv-Visor is […]

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NitroTracker, DS Music Tool, Now Open Source

One of the most beloved tools in Nintendo DS homebrew has become free software, under the GPL v3. Talk about restrictive platforms – the DS requires special hardware just to get this app to run. But even with a couple of people involved in development, that could mean better, more frequent updates. I also wonder […]

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