In the weekend of 25th November 2017, I along with my colleague Don Gossen, attended #MTFLabs, part of Music Tech Fest, at Helsinki. For three days, around 35 artists, musicians and engineers hacked on some really cool stuff bringing together Music, IoT, Blockchain and Neurotech. It was all about creativity and technology coming together and I can proudly say that we made magic.
Full on cross-disciplinary #collabo at #MTFLabs. @Human_Inst @Sojaner @makerninja @thehandcoded @sirppini @x_and_y @muarts_tech @molybo @jcvasquezgomez Riikka Hänninen @stefanopiermatt @michelamagas @Future_Matters @gautamdhameja @_futuribile @dubber @oceanprotocol @BigchainDB. pic.twitter.com/wVPXx3MPcH— Music Tech Fest (@MusicTechFest) November 25, 2017
We started on Saturday, 25th November 2017, with some really cool and inspirational stories from the participating artists and then we moved on to the planning exercise. We planned a 20-minute performance at Slush Music for the evening of 28th November. In those 20 minutes, we aimed to showcase something which brought together music and blockchain technology.
We divided into smaller teams, merged back again and came up with a plan. We ideated and closed on creating assets and an application platform for registering music on blockchain to demonstrate blockchain based attribution to music creators.
Once the planning was done, we all went into our corners and started working on our pieces of the overall performance. Some of us with more creativity and music skills worked on creating and composing music while others worked on the tech side of things. Don and I focussed on creating the blockchain app for registering music assets.
We used the BigchainDB blockchain solution for registering assets and we created a couple of simple applications for that. The music assets created by the artists were registered on the blockchain. Then, using the apps we created, the audience was allowed to select some of those assets and create mashups which were also registered on the blockchain. This created an immutable attribution trail powered by blockchain technology right from the creation of music to the recreation of more music. All the original artists and the audience members creating mashups were attributed to the assets they created.
In the final performance awesome music creations were amalgamated with great technological ideas — accessibility devices for artists, neurotech headsets controlling sound and vibrations, IoT sensors controlling on-stage synchronization and blockchain recording attributions. We made sure all our skills were utilized in making the performance amazing.
For me, the best part was collaborating with people coming from completely different backgrounds. One of my favorite moments was when I explained blockchain to music composers and producers as a tool to get proper attribution for their creations. And when, in response, they nodded with hope and confidence, it just made my day.
There was so much energy all around. I met some really interesting people doing cool stuff and inspiring everyone around them. It was so freaking amazing having musical instruments, DJ consoles, IoT devices and sensors, neurotech headsets, programming workstations and passionate people in the same space.
And then we made magic.