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Saturday, September 24, 2016


World Music Visualisation: Social Media Integration

"This endless stream of likes.. Has evolution come to a standstill?" You might wonder - as do I - at the abstraction of all emotional expression a single word/icon, but that, it seems, is social media for ya.

This innocent-looking little toxin nudges us not towards connection, but projection. It begs approval, risks the void, the cold shoulder. I've come to see it as a simple stop/go flipper directing if not social order (for in the internet there is none) then certainly social reach. No likes, no reach.

Can social media reinvent itself? Shift from a race to the bottom to a sort of virtual life-raft equipped to empower, enable, help and encourage? My feeling is that in the long run platforms built around genuine interests and that engage on an emotional intelligence level will thrive. Sites which abuse user's online presence will not.

With an ever increasing range of integrable open and closed sourced social media forum and collaboration tools around, I can see I'll be giving this a lot of thought. Some examples?:

Big, brave, open-source, non-profit, community-provisioned, cross-cultural and dropped yer marbles crazy. → Like, share, back-link, pin, tweet and mail. Hashtags? For the crowdfunding: #VisualFutureOfMusic. For the future live platform: #WorldMusicInstrumentsAndTheory. Or simply register as a potential crowdfunder..

Social Media

Social media is earning itself a bad name, not least because it has been so effectively hijacked to channel a relentless barrage of advertising clutter and distraction at it's users.

Underlying this, a desire for lifestyles and expectations wildly beyond the planet's means. Social media doesn't just encourage, but celebrates toxic behaviours.

Comparison fosters jealousy, anonymity encourages mobbing and polarisation. Behind the scenes, business and industry, ethics discarded, bring every last trick -from drip feed thru' obsolescence- into play. Education rote-catapults each new generation into the system, wasting the gift of life and trapping the unwary in debt.

Alan Watts & David Lindberg - Why Your Life Is Not A Journey from David Lindberg on Vimeo.

Potential Crowdfunder?

Social media is making living beyond the planet's means a competitive sport. Upholding this pressure-inflated, life-surrogate economy is the sole occupation of banks, industry and business worldwide.
Advocates cling to the notion of prosperity, the reality is pollution, clutter, inequality, resource squander, mental illness, tax evasion, hoarding and a race towards social isolation and climate collapse. Can we do better?


The core interworking on this platform occurs between:
  • People
  • Music
  • Instrument Models
  • Theory Tools
Arrow by Freepik
There is much more, but should the latter three -all tools- fail to engage the former, the initiative will likely fail.

Whatever the motivation, people are drawn to those sharing their interests. 

It's perceived value will -depending on user- lie somewhere in a broad spectrum from the competitive to the social.
Support these, and membership is likely to grow.

Thinking carefully about the purposes it serves - on multiple levels - is well worthwhile. There are likely several key aspects to conventional musical virtuosity:
  • acquiring transferable skills already mastered by a mentor figure
  • continually stretching own boundaries
  • establishing genre authenticity
  • establishing own style
There are some nice fields of tension between some of these goals. Moreover, virtuosity is underpinned by own environment and traits of character: identification, inspiration, stamina and thought.


The catalyst (or catalysts) that initially send you on your path. My impression is this often lies in some core experience in childhood, a place or incident which establishes some sense of affinity.

Something in this drives us to communicate it with others. If musically, it is very probably something we find -for whatever reason- difficult to express in words.

--> Identification and communication are tightly bound.
--> Identification is a strong motivation, both for teachers and learners


Either a particular sound embodying qualities a learner wishes to master, or some mentor figure embodying these skills and prepared to share them.

The path to mastery of a sound can be long and arduous. Inspired by Tarrega in the hands of Narciso Yepes, for example, I spent six months on achieving a halfway reliable tremelo.

--> brings into focus the importance of access and the existence of quality learning material

Stamina or Endurance

Through practice, new neural pathways are developed in the relevant part of the brain. Any practice involves repetition, so stamina and endurance (not quite the same thing) are in the long run key. To a certain degree these are qualities inherent in the individual, but also lie under the influence of others.

--> Endurance (the will to continue) thrives on positive feedback.
--> Stamina (skill in pacing) depends on good planning and scheduling

Spatial Visualisation

Learning an instrument takes effort, part of which in understanding and navigating underlying music-cultural structures and norms.

Mental abstractions and models develop over time, sometimes reaching their full potential only after many years. Once we begin to -possibly unconsciously- map and navigate between these, we arrive in the realms both of meta-knowledge ("knowledge about knowledge"), and (in a motor skills context) virtuosity.

--> In providing dynamic, interactive, visual models, the process leading to mental and motor virtuosity can probably be significantly shortened.


Chromatic Circle
(with Freepik Inlay)
People provide identification and inspiration, and support us in developing learning stamina and musical insights. Tools simply shorten the path.

This platform will, I hope, find traction and focus through it's sharing, social or community aspects: providing mutual support and empowerment.
This will, I hope, reflect and build on traditional face-to-face modes of learning and music-making.

In shifting focus back from the material to the social, this interworking underpins wellbeing, contentment, sustainability and -at multiple levels- diversity.

In this sense, it's natural categorisation is as part of the (in it's unadulterated, ie non 'gig' sense) sharing economy. 

Social Media Integration

Precisely which social media mechanisms best serve community and wellbeing is probably beyond the scope of this post.

Nevertheless, two things will ultimately differentiate this from other social media platforms, and that is peer-to-peer enablement across various mobility boundaries and it's stubbornly graphical nature

Nearest and dearest to me is to ease the looming travel or mobility poverty brought by the singularity - ghettoisation through denial of means or access to travel.

It is our task to make that process work, while at the same time avoiding clear and known social media drawbacks.

That said, web frameworks continue to improve. As demonstrated in videos such as this (one of many), progress and benefits occur fast.


online music learning,
online music lessons
distance music learning,
distance music lessons
remote music lessons,
remote music learning
p2p music lessons,
p2p music learning
music visualisation
music visualization
musical instrument models
interactive music instrument models
music theory tools
musical theory
p2p music interworking
p2p musical interworking
comparative musicology
world music
international music
folk music
traditional music
P2P musical interworking,
Peer-to-peer musical interworking
WebGL, Web3D,
WebVR, WebAR
Virtual Reality,
Augmented or Mixed Reality
Artificial Intelligence,
Machine Learning
Scalar Vector Graphics,
3D Cascading Style Sheets,

Comments, questions and (especially) critique welcome.