Bringing Communities Together Through Music
Welcome to Virginia Tech Linux Laptop Orchestra’s L2Ork Tweeter. L2Ork Tweeter is a free and open source program inspired by the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic that has required a vast majority of the human population to practice prolonged social distancing. It is designed to bring communities together by empowering users around the world to engage in collaborative music making even over slow internet connections. It also facilitates the exploration of audio synthesis and the rich variety of sounds one can generate using the frequency modulation algorithm. It supports up to ten concurrent performers and as many additional guests or audience members as the server bandwidth allows who can observe a performance live over the internet. Each user is given an instrument with a tracker that can be populated by up to 64 loop-enabled keystrokes or notes. This intentional constraint requires users to build complexity through interaction with other users. It is in part inspired by the popular social media platform Twitter that imposes a similar design constraint of allowing only up to 280 characters per Tweet. As a result, and as evidenced by its name, L2Ork Tweeter can be seen as a musical counterpart to Twitter.
Below we cover essential steps to get you started as quickly as possible. For a detailed overview of Tweeter’s features, we encourage you to watch the video above. For a 2-minute quick-start, fast-forward the video to the 1:25 mark.
First, you will need to download and install the Purr-Data (a.k.a. Pd-L2Ork) free and open-source digital sound manipulation visual programming language. During the development of L2Ork Tweeter, we have discovered a critical bug in the current 2.10.1 version of Purr-Data, a bug that was fixed and merged into its code shortly thereafter. However, considering that Purr-Data has not yet had a new official release since the said bug fix was added, until there is an version newer than 2.10.1, you will need to either download new test builds linked below, or build your from the latest git snapshot found here.
Download latest Purr-Data test release for:
- Purr-Data for Linux, Windows, and OSX
- Purr-Data Packages for various Linux Distros (you will need 2.11 or newer; if unavailable, click here for the Ubuntu 16.04 64-bit debian file)
Once you have installed the Purr-Data. Download the latest version of the L2Ork Tweeter using the following link:
Now, simply unzip the downloaded L2Ork Tweeter zip file and open the L2Ork-Tweeter.pd file found inside it by double-clicking on it and you should be all ready to go.
We very much look forward to the creations you may come up with while collaborating with other users from across the world. Please don’t forget to share your creations with us and we will gladly include them in the future releases of the L2Ork Tweeter. Until then, stay safe, stay creative!