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Musical collaboration via Bluetooth

Imagine a device that allows you to store musical compositions, fragments of tracks, lyrics, loops and samples. It silently exchanges that data with other devices belonging to people you meet. At the end of the day, you have a whole new collaborative musical composition...

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Although it has been slow to catch on, Bluetooth is finally gathering momentum as the standard for short range communication between devices of all kinds. For example, my wireless mouse communicates with my computer through Bluetooth. 'Uhura-style' cell phone earpieces communicate with their handsets through Bluetooth.

So imagine a device (or it could be software for your phone, PDA or even digital camera) that allows you to store musical compositions, fragments of tracks, lyrics, loops and samples. You carry it around with you because it is just that kind of device.

And as you go about your daily business, your Bluetooth device will be actively searching for other similar devices within the nearest few meters.

When it finds one, it will communicate silently with it and exchange musical data. This could happen several times during the day without you even being aware of it.

Later that evening, you could download the contents of your device into your computer, which will be in effect a collaboration between you and all the like-minded people you had met - virtually via Bluetooth - during the day. And what's more, because the random interaction of people, your collaborative composition would be unique and different to everyone else's.

Perhaps you could even mix that collaboration and load it into your Bluetooth device for fresh adventures tomorrow. Science fiction? The odd thing is that the future often turns out to be even more different than we expect.

By David Mellor Sunday February 13, 2005
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