Fletcher Free Library Uses Ultra-Next-Gen Internet to Test Live Collaborative Performances with Tennessee; Dwight Ritcher of Dwight & Nicole Helps Out!

Words by Big Heavy World. Photos by James Lockridge.

These photos are of a successful LOLA (LOw LAtency Audio Visual Streaming System) test at Fletcher Free Library in Burlington, VT. Using the Burlington Telecom Gigabit network to connect via Internet2 to the Chattanooga Public Library, musicians in both Tennessee and Vermont performed together with no latency — or delay — in the network connection. They performed popular and original songs together, hearing each other play guitar and sing 'in real time.' In Burlington, musician Dwight Ritcher of Dwight & Nicole, played guitar and sang, and in Chattanooga, Megan Emery sang. The libraries are working together to try the technology and build collaborative simultaneous music programming that connects artists in each city with one another in live performance.

About LOLA: LOLA stands for LOw LAtency Audio Video. LOLA is an open source audio visual streaming system developed by the “Conservatorio di Musica G. Tartini” in Trieste, Italy, in collaboration with GARR, the Italian Academic and Research Network. LOLA allows for near real-time synchronized musical performances to occur with musicians across distances of up to 1500 (network) miles with extremely low latency. Depending on how the connection is routed, this could be anywhere from 800 to 1500 geographic miles with the greater distances producing more latency. The effect of having this low latency gives musicians the feeling they are performing together in the same room.

LOLA uses specialized audio and video devices (machine vision cameras, for example) and optimized software that taps the power of multi-core CPUs and GPUs. To achieve the lowest possible latency, packet loss, and jitter, LOLA relies on the data transmission capabilities only available on research and education (R&E) networks such as Internet2 and its regional R&E partner networks in the United States and other national research and education networks around the world such as GARR and GÉANT.

In the photos: Eric R. Hill, Technician (Black "Baker Street" shirt, no hat) Dwight Ritcher, Musician, Dwight & Nicole (Black "Grand Central" shirt, hat) Rubi Simon, Library Director, Fletcher Free Library (Blue jacket) Bob Colquhoun, Big Heavy World (Tan pants) Megan Emery, Chattanooga Public Library (White and red striped shirt, on monitor) Lisa Buckton, Teen Librarian, Fletcher Free Library (Dressed in black, seated)