Esa Onttonen

Composer and guitarist from Helsinki, Finland.


Various programming projects

This page describes some of my programming and website projects in the order of current relevance.

The Arranger (2016–2017, 2020–)

To complete my Sound in New Media master’s degree at Aalto Media Lab I implemented a tool for real-time orchestration and notation on mobile devices. For a more complete description of the project you can read the full PDF thesis at Aaltodoc.

Tools: Max w/ Mira and plenty of JavaScript, OSC, INScore, MaxScore, bach.

Update: In January 2020 I started working on a new version of the system with a 1-year grant from Kone Foundation. This version uses a different tech stack (React, Node.js etc) to make development easier and less dependent on infrequently updated third-party components. See Esa Onttonen Lab for more information about the group that was founded during this project.

The Performer (2017–)

I’ve been developing a computer-based environment for my solo guitar performances. Although I’ve already debuted with it (La Villa Des Arts, Paris, May 2017), the system is still very much in development.

Tools: Max w/ Mira.

Web (1994–)

I became interested in creating websites as soon as I got access to internet in 1994. The first site I created that same year, Charles Mingus Home Page, is still available, although not updated almost at all since 2003. The style is vintage HTML/CSS from the late 1990’s. (Check Wayback Machine for a 1997 capture of my own homepage).

I have done multiple iterations of the Fiasko Records website – both the content and back-end (PHP) – since the original site was launched in 2000. The latest 2018 version went back to static with Jekyll which is also used on this site.

I created and updated most of the content for the Sibelius Academy Jazz Music Department’s website until 2002. Most recently (2019) I’ve created content for Aalto Media Lab’s Sound in New Media pages that are hosted on Aalto University’s Drupal platform.

Languages and tools: HTML, CSS, PHP, SQL, Wordpress, Jekyll, Liquid.

Recdb (2002–2003)

Back in the mid-1990’s I used RECDB, a Unix command line tool, to catalogue my record collection. During my computer science studies at the University of Helsinki (2002–2003) I programmed a graphical front-end to edit and browse the RECDB database (ca. 7500 lines of Java code). Although I haven’t touched the code since building the JAR file in 2003 I still use it for my own cataloguing purposes.

Languages and tools: Java, NetBeans.