April 2, 2013 at 10:36 am

3 Musical Instruments You Can Play Elsewhere on the Planet

They say the internet of things is coming.

When it does, everyday objects will go online, many with IP addresses. It’s already happening, in particular with personal area network (PAN) devices. These non-computer-type objects can monitor our heartbeats, rate of motion, and even our brainwaves to select the right music, among (many, many) other things.

Another internet of things thing: networked musical instruments.

You can log into them through a web browser, from anywhere, for free, and play them in real life, often with other real people. That’s starting to happen too. Here are three. Did we miss any?

Universal Orchestra

google real world instruments

The Universal Orchestra from Google (direct link) is the most advanced example we’ve seen to date. Log in to any of several instruments, either in a real London museum or in virtual reality, and you can play the instruments by programming them with little dots. Anyone can do it.


We can explain the beauty behind Patchwerk in two moves.

The Paradiso Synthesizer at MIT looks like this:

But you can play it with this:


I mean come on.

Love Song Machine

We were sad to find that the Love Song Machine is defunct, but it sounded great. You could write the bell parts here using a simple “D0=1″ music notation, :

…and they would play here (this worked as of March 2012):

Image attribution here here and here.

Note: Evolver.fm is on a reduced publishing schedule due due to family logistics on the part of the editor.