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Adding MIDI APIs to Audio WG Charter (was: MIDI enumeration (was: Re: getUserMedia use cases))

From: Doug Schepers <schepers@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 01 Feb 2012 13:58:33 -0500
Message-ID: <4F298B59.20002@w3.org>
To: Chris Wilson <cwilso@google.com>
CC: Joseph Berkovitz <joe@noteflight.com>, "Tom White (MMA)" <lists@midi.org>, Robin Berjon <robin@berjon.com>, public-audio@w3.org, Dom Hazael-Massieux <dom@w3.org>, jussi.kalliokoski@gmail.com
Hi, folks-

After discussion with the MIDI Manufacturers Association, we resolved at 
the Audio WG f2f to propose add a MIDI API to the Audio WG charter.

Chris Wilson has been championing this, and has offered to be one of the 
editors of such a spec [1].

I believe that the MIDI folks would welcome such an API, based on my 
conversations with them.  (Please correct me if I'm wrong, Tom.)  I also 
think there is interest in allowing for rendering of Standard MIDI Files 
(SMF), but that may be more a matter for an HTML spec (though perhaps 
they could be rendered through an audio API?).

So, unless anyone in this group objects to this, I plan to amend the 
Audio WG charter (subject to AC approval, of course) to include:
* connecting music controllers to the Web
* exposing bidirectional messaging channels to devices

(... or similar more appropriate wording).

This would be a separate deliverable from any audio API currently under 




On 2/1/12 1:24 PM, Chris Wilson wrote:
> Forking subject.
> So I can see the following enumeration/creation scenarios for MIDI:
> - Enumerating MIDI interfaces present on the device (e.g. I have several
> multi-port MIDI interfaces present, this lets me enumerate each input or
> output, likely get unique IDs for each one (so a developer could
> maintain MIDI config profile).
> - Creating a virtual output port (e.g. a developer wants to create a
> software synth program that, while running, creates a new device output
> for other programs to enumerate) with some form of unique ID
> - Creating a virtual input port (e.g. a developer wants to create a
> sequencer program that, while running, creates a new device input for
> other programs to enumerate) with some form of unique ID
> Questions for the MIDI devs here-
> - Is the "synth" output designation in Windows useful?  The #voices,
> type of synth, etc?  Seems a bit overdone, to me.  It would seem like
> being able to tell "this is a software synth" would be useful - although
> - How about the MIDI device manufacturer/product ID?  Driver version #?
> - Windows MIDI mapper.  This always seemed overblown to me; and, of
> course, you can just use it as a device in Windows.  I don't think we
> need special exposure, as in the Windows APIs.  Thoughts?
> My off-the-cuff feeling, BTW, is that there should be a commonality of
> pattern between audio port enumeration and MIDI port enumeration, but I
> think they will end up as separate APIs.
> -C
> On Wed, Feb 1, 2012 at 9:29 AM, Joseph Berkovitz <joe@noteflight.com
> <mailto:joe@noteflight.com>> wrote:
>     I also agree with Tom's suggestion that MIDI devices be considered
>     as part of this sphere.
>     ...joe
>     On Jan 31, 2012, at 7:25 PM, Tom White (MMA) wrote:
>>     Chris Rogers said
>>         it would be good to have an introspection API to enumerate the
>>         available audio devices for both audio input and output.  A
>>         built-in microphone would be one such device.  Also commonly
>>         available is the line-in analog audio input on a laptop or
>>         desktop computer.  And, of course, any externally connected
>>         multi-channel USB or Firewire audio devices.  Some of these
>>         can present eight (or more) simultaneous audio input and
>>         output channels simultaneously.
>>         It's important to not consider audio input in isolation, but
>>         also audio output capabilities when enumerating the devices.
>>     I can't help but point out that MIDI devices (software and
>>     hardware ports) are commonly used for audible* input/output and
>>     thus would also be a candidate for enumeration...
>>     Tom White
>>     www.midi.org <http://www.midi.org/>
>>     *I say "audible" instead of "audio" so there is no confusion
>>     between MIDI and audio <g>
>     ... .  .    .       Joe
>     *Joe Berkovitz*
>     President
>     *Noteflight LLC*
>     84 Hamilton St, Cambridge, MA 02139
>     phone: +1 978 314 6271 <tel:%2B1%20978%20314%206271>
>     www.noteflight.com <http://www.noteflight.com>
Received on Wednesday, 1 February 2012 18:58:44 UTC

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