The music of tomorrow is influenced by how we approach the technology of today
What is networked music performance?
Networked Music Performance is when we play at the same time together from remote locations over the Internet. We might be in the same building but different rooms, or in different cities or countries and eventually differnet bodies moving towards or away from each other in space. Networked Music challenges us to accept and embrace the primary characteristics of latency and acoustic feedback.
What is 'latency native'?
As humans we have evolved to compensate for many latencies: such as, the time it takes for sound to propogate through the air, or the neurological latency to process audible signals into music, or the time it takes for our brains to tell us muscles to make sounds with an instrument we are holding. While today most musicians find that the extra added Internet latency creates a barrier to performing together in real-time, over time, with practice and technology, we will learn to accommodate for that extra latency.
Can't we make latency go away?
Internet latency is a property of physics, we cannot transmit data faster than the speed of transmission. As distances increase, so does the time it takes for us to communicate over that distance. Latency won't go away so we need to accept it as a primary characteristic of music when we play together over long distances.
What technology do I need?
There is a lot of excellent free and paid technology available, depending on your needs. Basically, you need a low-latency, high-quality bi-directional audio stream between at least two locations. See the bottom of this page for accesible software how you can make your own Networked Music projects.
What about acoustic feedback?
With good quality audio, when we all have microphones and speakers we now risk sending feedback to each other. Part of the research here is to disover solutions to this problem.