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Ecosystems of Visual Programming Languages for Music Creation: A Quantitative Study

Visual programming provides a way to construct and communicate concepts to a computer by manipulating graphical objects and by using symbols, spatial arrangements, and visual expressivity instead of text. In context of music creation, it offers an intuitive yet comprehensive approach. To avoid using textual programming, some composers, performers, and multimedia artists employ visual languages to support their creative processes. This research explores contextual aspects related to discovery, learning, and use of different visual languages for music. The authors conducted a survey of 218 participants and quantitatively analyzed relations between relevant dimensions. The resulting interpretation of the analyzed data formed guidelines for educators, visual language developers, and end-users. Educators can use this research to improve how they transfer knowledge and mentor their students. Developers are provided with empirical evidence gathered through rigorous quantitative research that can indicate the existence of certain phenomena related to users of their tools. End users can engage in continuous and unstructured exploration and experimentation.

JAES Volume 66 Issue 6 pp. 486-494; June 2018
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AES - Audio Engineering Society