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The Eleventh Annual Interactive Music Conference
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Group Report: Facilitating Remote Jam Sessions

Participants: A.K.A. "Disruptive Technologies Workgroup – Remote Aggregation of Music Synergies"

Gary E. Johnson, SMSC Austin

Len Layton, C-Media Electronics
Keith Weiner, DiamondWare Benjamin Masse, Double V3
Peter Lupini, 3dB Research Ltd. Henry Trenton, SigmaTel
  Facilitator: Van Webster, Webster Communications

Problem Statement:

How can we facilitate remote jamming?

Facts to be taken into account:

  • Diversity of operating systems, softwares and codecs;
  • Latencies due to computers;
  • Latencies due to network/Internet;
  • Most musicians are not computer literate – KISS principle.

Expected results:

  • Synchronous concert or rehearsal
  • Asynchronous music composing / mash ups


1. Synchronous concert or rehearsal

Existing technologies:

  • Distributed networking (c.f. Akamai or Real Networks)
  • Streaming softwares (Windows Media, Real Helix, Shoutcast, etc.)
  • Low latency technologies (APTX)
  • DiamondWare

Main problem:

  • Latency
  • Costs? (ROI to be done)

Business model:

  • Bands need to rent a rehearsal studio, which is most of the time noisy and smelly;
  • Transportation time and costs;
  • Insurances and security;
  • Monthly or per-hour renting rate (c.f. Livemeeting or webex).

Proposed solution:

  • PC client with web application with 1-loop offset (bar) for synchronization
  • Clock synchronization really important
  • Loop downloaded on every PC client during the offset
  • Need to have a feature managing spotlight requests for solos priority / starts

Problem: 4-bar (loop) offset – not viable for interaction between musicians

To explore: Use Real Network and try to reduce latency, possible interaction between musicians, e,g., a LiveMeeting session for musicians.

2. Asynchronous music composing / mash ups

Existing technologies:

  • FTP
  • ECM (Enterprise Content Management)
  • Workflow Management Software
  • Collaborative online applications

Main problem:

  • Diversity of operating systems, softwares and codecs;
  • Most musicians are not computer literate – KISS principle.

Business model:

  • Software license;
  • Monthly fee based on disk space, including backup of artistic work.

Proposed solution:

  • PC client with web application for synchronization
  • Loop downloaded on every PC client during synchronization

To be considered:

  • Converter / transcoder since panoplies of applications

3. Alternative Solutions

Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) in conjunction with the AES is experimenting with and demonstrating distributed recording sessions. The audio signals are transported with extremely low latency using research software and regional internet (CENIC).

The Distributed Immersive Performance (DIP) {http://imsc.usc.edu/dip/vision.html} project explores one of the most challenging goals of networked media technology: creating a seamless environment for remote and synchronous musical collaboration.

Action Items:

Look for existing solutions – GJ - done

Identify a software company interested in developing the collaborative add-on – AS – April 2007

Discussion about on-demand rehearsal / concert service with Real Networks – BM – April 2007

section 10

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select a section:
1. Introduction  2. Speakers  3. Executive Summary  
4. Ensuring that PC Audio Editing/Rendering Plug-ins and Processors Always Work
5. Making the Configuration and Utilization of Audio Systems Much Easier
6. To DRM or Not To DRM?
7. A Consumer-friendly Quantifiable Metric for Audio Systems
8. Improving the PC Sound Alert Experience
9. A Prescription for Quality Audio
10. Facilitating Remote Jam Sessions
11. Providing a High Level of Mixing Aesthetics in Interactive Audio and Games

12. Schedule & Sponsors