Just back from a fantastic week in London attending the Audio Mostly conference held at Queen Mary University by the Centre for Digital Music.

Audio Mostly is a conference which brings together musicians, sound designers, and technologists to discuss their latest understandings. This year the theme of the conference was Augmented and Participatory Sound and Music Experiences. This theme was explored through 8 oral sessions, three poster and demo sessions, four workshops, two concerts and an unforgettable dinner on the river Thames.

The conference opened with a fascinating talk by Luca Turchet about the Hyper-Mandolin, and augmented Mandolin which enhanced the live electronics sound manipulations through sensing technology applied on the mandolin’s body.

On the second day, Rebecca Fiebrink gave a talk on how machine learning can support human musical practices. Her speech raised numerous questions and an interesting debate about the advantages and disadvantages of using machine learning.

Demo and poster session showed the incredible advancement in music and sonic interaction design by the research community. Remarkable was the demo presentation of the Mixed Reality MIDI Keyboard by John Desnoyers-Stewart, David Gerhard and Megan Smith. The gestural interaction was a topic widely explored during the conference. SoundThimble, a real-time gesture sonification framework was presented by Grigore Burloiu, Stefan Damian, Valentin Mihai and Bogdan Golumbeanu. These two works were remarkable. However, I believe that these works do not support the artistic practice due to the poor affordability of the implied technology. Also, very interesting was my discussion on embodied interaction with the SoundThible’s authors.

On the third day, Eleanor Turner and I performed The Wood And The Water,. at Oxford House in Bethnal Green. The concert was shared with four other performances (see program), the which reflected the applications of the themes touched during the conference.