Portable digital music players are becoming pervasive and the size of personal digital music collections has been steadily increasing (5-10 thousand tracks are common today). The emerging area of Music Information Retrieval (MIR) deals with all aspects of managing, analyzing and organizing music in digital formats. The majority of work in MIR follows a search/retrieval paradigm. More recently, the importance of browsing as an interaction paradigm has been realized and several novel interfaces have been proposed. In this paper, we describe a tangible interface for content-aware browsing of music collections. The Radio Drum is a gestural interface based on capacitance sensors that can detect the x,y,z positions of two drum sticks in a 3D volume. We describe two possible mappings that can be be used for browsing music collections without relying on metadata. The first is an explicit mapping of tempo and beat strength, and the second is a music similarity space using audio feature extraction and a Self Organizing Map (SOM). 1
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