bf-pd: Enabling Mediated Communication and Cooperation in Improvised Digital Orchestras

  • Luke DahlEmail author
  • Florent Berthaut
  • Antoine Nau
  • Patricia Plenacoste
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 11265)


Digital musical instruments enable new musical collaboration possibilities, extending those of acoustic ensembles. However, the use of these new possibilities remains constrained due to a lack of a common terminology and technical framework for implementing them. Bf-pd is a new software library built in the PureData (Pd) language which enables communication and cooperation between digital instruments. It is based on the BOEUF conceptual framework which consists of a classification of modes of collaboration used in collective music performance, and a set of components which affords them. Bf-pd can be integrated into any digital instrument built in Pd, and provides a “collaboration window” from which musicians can easily view each others’ activity and share control of instrument parameters and other musical data. We evaluate the implementation and design of bf-pd through workshops and a preliminary study and discuss its impact on collaboration within improvised ensembles of digital instruments.


Digital orchestras Laptop orchestra Digital musical instruments Collaboration BOEUF bf-pd PureData 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luke Dahl
    • 1
    Email author
  • Florent Berthaut
    • 2
  • Antoine Nau
    • 2
  • Patricia Plenacoste
    • 2
  1. 1.McIntire Department of Music, University of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA
  2. 2.Université de LilleLilleFrance

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