As Apple are set to announce their iSlate, or whatever their tablet computer is going to be called, and we all contemplate the future of the ‘cloud’ of online applications and file storage that we’ll doubtless be accessing from our Dick Tracy watches and optical implants in a few short years, here is a neat little online music editing package that lets you save your projects online, and share them with other users. It’s by no means as sophisticated as desktop based programs like Cubase or Pro Tools, but as a means of roughing out a track with remote collaborators, Aviary’s ‘Myna’ is an excellent free web app.
As well as being able to upload your own tracks and samples to their server, you can import material from Soundcloud, pick and choose from their online libraries of loops and samples, and browse other people’s uploads for stuff to use in your project. You can then insert these clips into tracks just by dragging, and then use all the standard tools you’d expect from an audio editor; gain, fade, stereo balance, clip trim and loop, as well as a bank of simple effects like delay, reverb, filters and phasers. Once you’ve sketched out your track you can mix it down and export it as a .wav, or you can leave it up there to be edited by other users. It might not give you access to your favourite plugins, but this is a hell of a lot of music processing power for free.