If you’re the kind of person that thinks the only useful function for a CD is a coaster, the SF Music Hack Day on Feb. 16-17 could be for you. Organized by online media innovatorsTokBox, Echo Nest and Spotify, the event aims to foster music-oriented invention within the coding community.
The first Music Hack Day event took place in London in 2009 at The Guardian newspaper offices. Since then, mirror events have sprung up in New York, Montreal, Sydney, and throughout Europe. Projects that have emerged from previous Hack Day events include "The Tangible Theremin," an app which links two iPhones to make a digital facsimile of the beloved analog instrument; "Song Roulette," which combines Spotify’s library with the random sociality of Chat Roulette; "Pretentiometer," an app that analyzes your hipster quotient by comparing your music library to the top rated albums on Pitchfork; and “The Inhuman Microphone,” which utilizes mobile phones with speakers within a crowd to circumvent laws which ban amplification in public spaces.
The two-day event takes place at TokBox’s South Beach office space. Workshops are scheduled for the morning of the first day, then at 2 p.m. a 24-hour hackathon begins in earnest. Attendees will demonstrate their projects the following afternoon, and prizes (including an iPad, iPad mini, 3M Streaming Projector, and a $200 Amazon gift card) will be awarded to the best. People who would like to participate in the weekend’s activities should register in advance, while those looking to invest in new technology or just plain curious can attend the demo session at 2 p.m. on the second day.