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Recently I wrote a post here about the importance of API’s and the new developer ecosystem currently emerging around music. As part of the post I described Music Hack Day, an event that celebrates this new ecosystem and aims to accelerate its development.

“The format is simple – 24 hours to build the next generation of music apps. Web, mobile, software, hardware, instruments, art – anything goes as long as it’s music related. Whilst everyone else is busy talking about the future of music, at Music Hack Day we’re having a lot of fun actually making it.”

Music Hack Day has been a great way to demonstrate the creativity and innovation around music that comes from the tech community. The past eighteen months have seen ten Music Hack Day events take place. Starting in London, it has spread across the world to Berlin, Amsterdam, Boston, Stockholm, San Francisco and Barcelona. It’s been exciting to watch around 1500 participants taking part, building 250 hacks and with over 75 music and tech companies’ involvement.

However, despite the continued success of Music Hack Day, there are still many within the music industry who aren’t quite sure what it is, and more importantly how it might relate to their business. We’re hoping to bridge that gap by giving the attendees at MIDEM a small taste of what happens at a normal Music Hack Day. To do this we are working with MIDEM to organise a MIDEM Hack Day in Cannes for twenty four hours on January 23 & 24.

It’s important to note that this won’t be a normal Music Hack Day, which are usually held separately to any other events, as well as being completely open and free to attend. But it will very much held in the spirit of it Music Hack Day. And is hopefully a great way to showcase to a MIDEM audience what is possible when you bring the worlds of developers, APIs and music together. MIDEM has already embraced new music startups through the development of the MidemNet Lab and MIDEM Hack Day is a great addition to this.

Whilst everyone treads the floors of the busy conference, 20 or so music hackers from a range of disciplines and companies will be elsewhere in the Palais, getting together to build some compelling new music apps in just 24 hours. These new apps will be unveiled and demonstrated at the end of the MIDEM Hack Day and will also be accompanied by two other sessions to give the opportunity for MIDEM delegates to come along and find out more about what Music Hack Day is and why we do it.

Throughout December we’ll be posting interviews with several of the hackers and developers who have taken part in Music Hack Day. But we also want your involvement.

If you have ideas of hacks that you’d like to see built during MIDEM Hack Day then we want to hear about them. Feel free to do this in the comments below.

Onsite at MIDEM, the schedule is as follows:

January 23: Hacking begins
The developers will get started on their projects. New music apps will be built in just 24 hours using the platforms and APIs of several participating companies.

January 23, 14.30: Introducing the new music developer ecosystem
Dave Haynes (SoundCloud) and Paul Lamere (The Echo Nest) will make a presentation on the new developer ecosystem that is emerging around music. They will explain the role of Music Hack Day and highlight some of the best projects that have been built during the last ten Music Hack Day events worldwide.

January 24, 14.30: Meet the hackers
This is your opportunity to come and meet some of the hackers and companies involved in the Hack Day showcase at MIDEM. Find out what it’s all about and ask some questions. Learn more about the tools and technologies that go into making a new music app and what’s possible.

January 24, 16.30: Real-time demos
This live demo session is the culmination of the MIDEM Hack Day programme. The hackers will present what they have been doing for the last 24 hours and showcase all the new music apps, hacks and projects built specifically for MIDEM Hack Day.

Meanwhile, if you have any specific questions about Music Hack Days, please feel free to email musichackday [at]gmail [dot]com.

Photo: A Music Hack Day, by David Kjelkerud via flickr


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  1. Pingback: MIDEM Hack Day « Music Machinery

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