[LAA] [ANN] Announcing the first public release of libmapper

Stephen Sinclair radarsat1 at gmail.com
Fri Feb 18 17:54:41 UTC 2011

This is a belated announcement for libmapper 0.1, the first public
release of this C library intended to ease connection and mapping
between input devices and synthesizers.

libmapper provides a network-enabled middleware that allows an
application to announce input and output signals to a subnet using a
shared multicast UDP port, and automatically respond to requests to
create dynamic connections.  By using multicast, we avoid dependence
on a central hub to manage connections, and use it to arrange signal
transmission on a peer-to-peer basis without requiring a
rebroadcasting infrastructure for data sharing.  Additionally, this
decentralized approach allows collaborative manipulation of signal
connections on the local subnet, encouraging an experimental approach
to mapping design.

Mappings between signals can be constructed dynamically that perform
translation of OSC message addresses for the receiver, and
additionally can apply arbitrary transformation of signal values based
on a given formula.

Documentation, source code, and binaries can be found on the project's
website. [1]

libmapper constitutes a new C version of our protocol that has been
previously developed in Max/MSP [2], and marks the beginning of an
effort to implement support for this protocol in several different
languages and audio environments.  Currently we provide bindings for
Python (through SWIG) and provide external objects for PureData and
Max/MSP.  Managing connections on the network is still accomplished
via our Max/MSP GUI, but we are currently working on a cross-platform
application to replace it.  Although libmapper 0.1 was actually made
public in December, we were originally waiting to finish a first
version of this new GUI before announcing libmapper, but have since
decided that it would be best to announce libmapper sooner for those
who might be interested in using it or contributing to development.

A video of the GUI being used in a previous version of the system can
be seen here [3].  In this video, the GUI is shown interacting with a
controller and a synthesizer both in Max/MSP; now with libmapper, the
synthesizer and also the program that communicates with the controller
could now be written in C, or any language with bindings to the

libmapper's only dependency is liblo, which is used to send and
receive OSC messages, which are used for all communications.  It has
been developed and tested on Linux and Mac OS X operating systems.

Please see the README and Tutorial on that page for further details on
concept and usage.

Thank you for your attention, feedback is welcome on the project
mailing list [4].

The libmapper team, Input Devices and Music Interaction Laboratory,
McGill University.

[1] http://idmil.org/software/libmapper
[2] http://idmil.org/_media/publications/2008/malloch_lncs2008.pdf
[3] http://vimeo.com/7104879
[4] http://groups.google.com/group/dot_mapper

Notice to list maintainer: It seems that the instructions for announce,
linked to from the mailman info page, are down with a 404:

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