"Wouldn’t it be cool if…"
We’ve all had that thought about something. How do you get from there to a product you can use and share with others? When I found myself playing with an idea that seemed exciting and new, I decided to capture some notes on the process, from the perspective of an Engineering Manager at a company that’s all about implementing people’s creative visions.
After over a decade of work, the final specification documents for MIDI 2.0 have been released to the public!
There’s a fantastic article on the MIDI.org site that explains what the hubbub is all about that I’ll just point you at rather than rewriting — check it here: Details about MIDI 2.0
When MIDI 1.0 was released in 1983, the complete document that detailed all you needed to know about it was eight pages long. Expect to need to read a bit more than that in 2020—the full spec for MIDI 2.0 is five separate documents, each looking at a single part of the system:
M2-100: Overview of the specifications
M2-101: Specification of MIDI-CI, the Capability Inquiry portion of MIDI 2 that’s required to enable devices to query each other and determine how two devices can work together.
M2-102: Common Rules for MIDI-CI Profiles explains how to define and work with MIDI 2 profiles to define controllers and other configuration data to permit devices to automatically adapt to the capabilities present in the currently connected instruments.
M2-103: Rules for Property Exchange, the new provisions for querying current settings and capabilites of connected devices
M2-104: Definition of the new Universal MIDI Packet data structure and the high-resolution MIDI 2 message protocol.
Before you can access these documents, you’ll need to create a (free!) account with The MIDI Association, which is an organization of MIDI users. If you’re not already a member, the link to access the docs will redirect you first to the login/account creation page.
Download everything here and then go make cool stuff with it.
At the recent Winter NAMM convention in Anaheim California, the MIDI Manufacturers Association voted to formally adopt the MIDI 2.0 specification that’s been in development for over a decade. Art+Logic has been involved with this effort for the past several years as part of the group of companies working to validate MIDI 2.0 during its development and refinement by creating prototype implementations of it and connecting those prototypes together to make sure that things perform as well in reality as they do on paper.
For the past year or so, I’ve been working as one of a group of developers within the Protocol Working Group of the MIDI Manufacturers Association to create prototype tools and applications that implement the upcoming MIDI 2.0 specification as it’s worked its way through many drafts to the point where it’s now ready for the MMA and AMEI, their Japanese counterpart, to vote on its adoption as an official standard.
I’m looking forward to presenting more information on what’s new for musicians and developers in the new standard, both here on the A+L blog and out in the real world.