What we wish were true

• Portability
• Transparency
• Simplicity
• Affordability

I am afforded some discretionary time. I would like to spend it making music. Computers fascinate me. They allow me a degree of control while engaged in the task of organizing sound. I would like to have more control so I am always configuring my computer. Even tho a lot has changed about the way I’ve made music over the years I find it easy to recognize myself in what I hear still.

.wav files

I make files. For the longest time, I’ve been making .wav files. Ever since the beginning. I would like for that to change now. I am constantly being redrawn into the dream of creating a new kind of file. A new file format, with entirely new capabilities, enabling new modes of expression for a new kind of artist working with code to interface with sound.

.tau files

A terminal session and an audio stream in sample accurate sync would really be something useful for a lot of folks I’d argue. To quickly get a feel for what I’m on about here check out this site that Sam Keating-Fry made for Renick Bell’s Empty Lake release on UIQ. Ideally I’d like for there to be a CLI application running in a terminal on a computer playing the .tau file. As we’ve seen on the site that Sam made; A terminal is not constrained to running locally on your machine. It can also live in the browser. Everyone has a browser right? This extends portability tremendously.

Let’s skip ahead to where some kid is watching and listening to a .tau file being played in a terminal held within a browser. Vis has no idea what it is or how it works. Just stumbled on it haphazardly somehow wading through the wreckage of The Public Internet. The file can be paused like a video file. When paused the text in the player can be copied. This is a fundamental difference. The viewer is immediately invited to copy and to build upon the material being presented. This leads expectations away from code being presented for cosmetic purposes towards transparency.

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