Frameworks 3D: Composition in the third dimension

Music composition on computer is a challenging task, involving a range of data types to be managed within a single software tool. A composition typically comprises a complex arrangement of material, with many internal relationships between data in different locations – repetition, inversion, retrograde, reversal and more sophisticated transformations. The creation of such complex artefacts is labour intensive, and current systems typically place a significant cognitive burden on the composer in terms of maintaining a work as a coherent whole. FrameWorks 3D is an attempt to improve support for composition tasks within a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) style environment via a novel three-dimensional (3D) user-interface. In addition to the standard paradigm of tracks, regions and tape recording analogy, FrameWorks displays hierarchical and transformational information in a single, fully navigable workspace. The current implementation combines Java with Max/MSP to create a cross-platform, user-extensible package and will be used to assess the viability of such a tool and to develop the ideas further.


  • Richard Polfreman