Orchestra Hits and the Value of Play

I recently made a quirky little music web-app. You can check it out at orchestrahit.com (special thanks to Ed Platt for hosting the site!) and also read a bit about the process and some thoughts it has brought up for me below.

While working on this I found myself asking: what is this for? what am I gaining out of this time I’m spending creating this? Some of the answers I came up with included:

1 - A chance to practice some html, css, and javascript coding - something I find interesting but don’t always find much need for.

2 - A chance to explore the WebAudio API a bit (that’s what this code uses to actually load and trigger the samples). As a tool that let’s you make richer audio applications that run in web browsers, who knows - this could be useful some day for making something “real.” (I also discovered that the WebAudio API doesn’t work so great on Android browsers, which is a shame.)

3 - It’s kind of funny, so I guess that’s something.

And I realized that in all that, I was kind of dismissing, out-of-hand, the creation itself. The end product is actually fun to play with, even if there isn’t a specific goal in mind (I know I’ve had fun messing around with it). Which reminded me of the value of play as it’s own activity - no need for a reason or an end-game. And if play is important, then creating toys is valuable and worthy in and of itself. So, let me try this again:

Hey! I made this music toy - orchestrahit.com. I think it’s pretty fun and it makes me smile. Hope you enjoy it, too!

All Sketches and Experiments