I started a project recently with some friends working on making a really accessible device for musicians to play together remotely. The technology already exists, but it is a bit hard to setup and is probably most widely used in academic environments. I did a session yesterday with our prototype device, it went really well, felt like doing a live radio session. Because the latency is as low as possible with current network infrastructure, and audio quality is lossless, you get a really strange experience of feeling like you’re in the same room, but somehow different. I’m actually not interested in recreating the feeling of being in the same room. It really feels like we’re creating new spaces which didn’t previously exist. Currently we use a web server to facilitate communication between different musicians. We’ve started to talk about the server like it’s a rehearsal room where we can meet to play.
The session this week was with two musicians in Manchester, and two in London.
Here’s the device and some development pics: