Electronic Musicians: Who, What, Why?
Eventually, someone is going to ask me these questions, so I probably should think about them a bit and come up with some good answers beforehand. The main reason I’m focusing on electronic musicians is my love for music in general. Even though the RIAA will argue that the widespread pirating of music is bad for their business, it has encouraged a change in the way people find out about new musicians and expand their musical tastes.
The genre that I find the most interesting thus far is the area of electronic music. The capabilities of an electronic musician have expanded as the processing power and intelligence of their systems has increased. Also, due to the fact that much of the equipment (software) needed to create this type of music drops in price on a level with the rest of computing technology means that more people are able to experiment and try their hand. While this has inevitably lead to an outpouring of mediocre and derivative works (as most electronic fans will admit), it also means that there is a fertile and accessible ground for talented individuals to make their mark.
However, even though the individual has the potential, the individual is also the limiting factors in some cases. The incredibly sophisticated sonic landscapes that some uniquely talented individuals are able to create are the result of years of training utilizing complex software systems, hardware interfaces, and personal experience.
My main question is : “Why are most of the software/hardware interfaces designed with only the individual in mind?” A general push towards more collaborative software applications is gaining momentum as we speak in office productivity software. I think it is only a matter of time until software maximizes the productivity of a single electronic musician much in the same way that office applications have maximized (by my unqualified opinion) the productivity of the individual. The logical next step is to come up with applications and interface that combine the work of two or more individuals in the most efficient way possible. However, the world of the electronic musician is very different than that of the every day office worker or student. Their needs, habits, and behaviors with conventional interfaces and software needs to be studied so that collaboration in their context can be facilitated.