How to GLUE your Network

When you use your MPA Things, usually all you need to know is that there is some GLUE somewhere on your network. Maybe here or over there. It actually does not matter. As long as you have some GLUE!

We hear you.  You must be asking yourself….. how does this work?

Distributed, not centralized

Today, most of the time a computer is at the very center of a setup. We all love computers for what they enable us to do. However, such highly centralized topology is rather limiting when it comes to accessibility, reliability, scalability and simplicity.  With the evolution of the internet, computers are no longer at the center.  They are members of a much larger network – this enables us to use computers in ways not imagined just a few years ago.

Consider GLUE to be the internet of your studio. The GLUE Control Software connects your Network of Things: computers, controllers, mobile touch screens, all kinds of audio gear and all your audio gear, to provide you with awesome new ways to control and automate your setup!

Where does GLUE run?

GLUE is a type of software that always runs without a keyboard and mouse attached. It is configured via its embedded web server. Allowing you to set up GLUE from any HTML browser in your network. For operation, GLUE relies on tactile hardware as well as mobile touch screens – attached locally via USB or across the network in your LAN.

Therefore, GLUE can run on very compact and affordable computers like the Raspberry Pi. Mounted on a Compute Tile residing inside a Block, GLUE is always on and always there when you need it. No screen, no mouse, no noise – yet it ties everything together and makes its presence known by extending the capabilities of your studio like never before.

Using multiple GLUEs in a network

Just like the internet, a GLUE-based network has no single center. When GLUE finds more GLUE in the network, they join forces and team up to work as one! By default, GLUE makes its resources available to every other GLUE system in the network – enabling new workflows and new ways for multi-user interaction! However, if you want to protect functionality, use can use passphrases to prevent undesired access in open networks.

Use multiple GLUE instances in your network to…

  • have more places to connect MPA Things and other Gear via USB
  • combine autonomous and independent setups in agile ways
  • invite your friends to combine your capabilities for uninhibited creativity

Networks are inclusive!

There is no need to limit yourself to monoculture where every device has to speak the same protocol. Any attempt to standardize a single protocol to be the one and only protocol is not only futile, it is also simply a bad idea. Fact is – there are many popular protocols out there that deserve to be supported. Therefore GLUE is multi-protocol. While it uses its own protocol for the interconnect of multiple GLUE instances, it simultaneously communicates multiple protocols over the network.

On day one, GLUE will support the following protocols:

  • MIDI – to tie in any synthesizer and a lot of other gear which implements MIDI control
  • OSC – to tie in innovative software based synthesis and touch interfaces (e.g. TouchOSC)
  • DMX – the standard light/stage performances
  • MQTT – the popular IOT protocol that provides control for just about anything from home to industrial appliances

In the future, more protocols are to follow – many of them implemented by the community.