The ixiQuarks: Merging Code and GUI in One Creative Space

Thor Magnusson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNConference contribution with ISSN or ISBNpeer-review


This paper reports on ixiQuarks; an environment of instruments and effects that is built on top of the audio programming language SuperCollider. The rationale of these instruments is to explore alternative ways of designing musical interaction in screen-based software, and investigate how semiotics in interface design affects the musical output. The ixiQuarks are part of external libraries available to SuperCollider through the Quarks system. They are software instruments based on a non-realist design ideology that rejects the simulation of acoustic instruments or music hardware and focuses on experimentation at the level of musical interaction. In this environment we try to merge the graphical with the textual in the same instruments, allowing the user to reprogram and change parts of them in runtime. After a short introduction to SuperCollider and the Quark system, we will describe the ixiQuarks and the philosophical basis of their design. We conclude by looking at how they can be seen as epistemic tools that influence the musician in a complex hermeneutic circle of interpretation and signification.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Computer Music Conference
Publication statusPublished - 2007
EventInternational Computer Music Conference - Copenhagen, Denmark
Duration: 1 Jan 2007 → …


ConferenceInternational Computer Music Conference
Period1/01/07 → …


  • ixi software, music, instrument, supercollider, programming, affordances, constraints.


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