Jam2jam software turns the OLPC XO laptop into a musical instrument. With Jam2jam XO, players can create and perform music and present images either on their own or synchronised with others, over the mesh network. In a Jam2Jam XO band each user plays a different part, either bass, drums, guitar, or keyboards.

Jam2Jam XO uses generative technologies so users can make choices about the musical activity in real time and influence changes in the music by moving a part icon up and down to alter the music in various ways. With Jam2jam XO you can be playing in a band within minutes and learn about musical concepts through playing collaboratively with others.

With jam2jam XO you can also capture images for a slide show to accompany your performance.


About Jam2Jam XO

Collaborative Media Performance software for the One Laptop Per Child computer, the XO laptop.

Using Jam2Jam XO

Jam2jam can be used on one machine as a solo performance, or the activity could be shared so that up to 4 XOs can play together as a laptop band. An XO band can be expanded by adding a singer, guitarist or other musicians.

Technical Overview

  1. Jam2Jam XO was designed to be used as a collaborative instrument, allowing multiple players to participate in a 'Jam'.

  2. Up to four jammers (one per instrument) are able to join a jam.

  3. The algorithms used by Jam2Jam XO were independent of a particular musical style.

  4. Jam2Jam XO is an activity (application) designed for use on the OLPC XO laptop running in the Sugar environment.

  5. Features of the OLPC XO used by jam2jam include audio playback, inbuilt camera, joystick controllers, and mesh networking capabilities.

  6. Jam2Jam XO uses generative algorithms to manipulate musical data read in from specially-composed MIDI files.

  7. Jam2Jam XO also uses Csound as a timer to schedule events in Python.

  8. In addition to providing accurate timing for musical events, this also allowes for images captured by the camera to be displayed in time with the music.

  9. The jam2jam XO software was designed and developed as part of the Network Jamming research project supported by the Australasian CRC for Interaction Design (ACID) in 2009.

  10. Jam2Jam XO is an open source project. Source code is included in the download.