Last Updated 07/02/10
Barry Threw is a technologist working to enable digital media artwork. He develops systems and tools for rich immersive and interactive media experience; combining sound, video, network, and audience interactions.
His education was spent studying the intersection of music and media technology. He holds dual majors in Music Engineering and Music Synthesis from the Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA; and an MFA in Electronic Music & Recording Media from Mills College in Oakland, CA.
Threw works with a variety of organizations stationed at the crossroads of art and technology — as the Software Director for Keith McMillen Instruments, a Berkeley CA based company developing advanced technology to bridge traditional musical instruments with the computer; as technician and software designer with Recombinant Media Labs, an organization presenting multichannel surround cinema at installations and festivals around the world; on the Board of Directors for the BEAM Foundation, a Berkeley, CA non-profit foundation seeking to spark a new Western classical music movement based on the technologies and aesthetics of the 21st century; and as a technical advisor with the Gray Area Foundation for the Arts, a San Francisco non-profit and digital arts gallery dedicated to building social consciousness through digital culture. He also does freelance consulting for institutions and artists exploring digital mediums through installation or performance, and has worked on pieces shown internationally.
- Master of Fine Arts — Electronic Music and Recording Media, 2004 – 2006, Mills College
- Coursework in: Computer Music, Composition, Deep Listening, Site Specific Installation Art, Orchestration, Electronics
- Bachelor of Music — Dual Major Production and Engineering & Music Synthesis, 2001 – 2004, Berklee College of Music
- Coursework in: Digital Audio, Mastering and Delivery, Non-Linear Editing, Electronic Music Composition, Interactive Performance Systems, Record Production, Post Production, Film Scoring, Alternate Music Controllers, Multi-Track Recording and Mixing, Traditional Composition, Jazz Harmony, Music Theory, Art History
- Additional Course Work — 2000 – 2001, University of Illinois
- Coursework in: History of Western Music, Music Theory, Electro-Acoustic Music Composition
- May 09 – Present — Gray Area Foundation for the Arts — Technical Consultant
- Gray Area Foundation for the Arts is a San Francisco-based nonprofit dedicated to building social consciousness through digital culture. Guided by the principles of openness, collaboration, and resource sharing, our programs promote creativity at the intersection of art, design, sound, and technology. A conduit for multidisciplinary creative exchange, GAFFTA supports the creation and diffusion of works that engage and inspire audiences, and offer meaningful contributions to the global movement that is shaping our collective experience.
- • Providing technical services and design for gallery exhibitions, installations and performances. Audio and visual support.
- Nov 06 – Present — Keith McMillen Instruments — Lead Software Developer Emeritus
- Keith McMillen Instruments makes innovative technology for string instruments. Our products let musicians that are familiar with traditional string instruments (violin, viola, cello, bass, or guitar) use the computer as an extension of their current playing ability. New technology inspires new art, and we hope that our products will enable performers to take their music in directions never before possible.
- Our first two flagship products are the K-Bow, the first commercially available wireless sensor bow, and StringPort, a polyphonic string-to-USB 2.0 converter with a unique, powerful, and extensible software suite that greatly expands the synthesis and processing palette of guitarists, violinists, bassists, and other stringed instrument players.
- Jun 06 – Present — Recombinant Media Labs — Technical Director
- Recombinant Media Labs is an organization dedicated to immersive and interactive media research, development and presentation. We explore the emerging medium of “spatial media synthesis”, the merging of surround sound and surround video, and their placement in space.
- • System design and programming of specialized tools for surround cinema content creation and support.
- • Video engineering for real-time and prerecorded works in a 10-screen, 360-degree, surround cinema space.
- • Audio engineering for 16-channel surround sound space, and traditional record production facility.
- Oct 06 – Jul 08 — Immersive Media Research — Programmer
- Immersive Media Research offers tools and consulting for specialized psycho-acoustics and sound motion control expert systems, particularly targeted a surround sound.
- • Programming of tools for surround sound content creation and mixing.
- • Installation and support of systems for surround sound and interactive environments.
- Feb 06 – Feb 07 — BEAM Foundation — Technical Manager
- The BEAM Foundation fosters electronic music that exemplifies the tools and aesthetic of the 21st Century. Using enhanced instruments coupled through an intelligent computer network, we create new music that is reactive, introspective, and fluid; resulting in surprising complexity and intimacy.
- • Programming and support of advanced experimental systems for integrating multiple musicians, musical scores, sound processing, and video live in performance.
- Sep 05 – Jan 07 — Skyline Studios — Audio Engineer, Sound Designer
- Feb 05 – Feb 07 — SymbolShift — Web Application Developer
- • interactive site coding in ASP.NET
- • large scale database integration with SQL, and ADO.NET
- • development of business logic systems in C#
- Feb 05 – May 06 — Mills College — Network Support
- Sep 04 – Mar 05 — Spark Studios — Audio Engineer
- Jan 02 – Jan 05 — Berklee College of Music — Network Systems Administrator
- • supported real time SMNP monitoring with open source software solutions
- • supported web based learning solutions
- • supervised network and end user support team
- • maintained backup power UPS systems
- • supported campus wide wireless network
- • first call support for core Cisco network infrastructure
- May 01 – Jul 01 — B and J Computers — Service Technician / Intern
- • installed network cable runs in business environments,
- • provided in house technical support for clients
- • installed and configured Microsoft Windows NT and 2000 servers
- • installed and configured bandwidth management reporting and firewall
- • configured Cisco routers, IOS
- • configured Linux/Microsoft cross platform network file sharing
- Jan 01 – May 01 — University of Illinois — On-Site Computing Consultant
- • directly interfaced with end users to support network and software issues on a variety of operating systems
- • implemented department wide operating system rollout utilizing Netware servers
- • remote troubleshooting of user systems
- Jul 00 – Sep 00 — Southern Illinois University — SQL Programmer
- • authored SQL lookup scripts for Oracle Databases
- • formatted Access databases for human resource management
- • migrated legacy COBOL search scripts to SQL
- • generated reports based on SQL lookups
- Feb 00 – Jun 00 — Earthlink — Remote Technical Support
- Sep 98 – Jan 99 — GlobalEyes Communications, Inc. — Technical Support Representative
- Jun 98 – Jul 00 — Murphysboro Community School District — Network Management
- • implemented streaming audio servers utilizing FreeBSD
- • implemented hardware upgrades on end user machines
- • migrated network from token-ring to ethernet topology
- • inventoried entire district wide hardware assets
Organization, Participation and Events
- SENSEable Cities, Exploring Urban Futures. Installation and Technical Advisor. Exhibition w/ MIT Senseable Cities Lab. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. 06/20/10.
- Transpose. Installation and Technical Advisor. Exhibition w/ Aaron Koblin and Robert Hodgin. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. 06/11/10.
- Avant Mutek Tour. Engineering. Live Performance w/ Akufen, Stephen Beaupre and Sutekh. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. 04/16/10.
- Do Androids Paint Electric Sheep?. Moderator. Panel and Disussion w/ Andrew (Andy) W. Schmeder, Christian Nagler, Terre Unité Parker, Rachel Beth Egenhoefer and Ian Smith-Heisters. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. 04/03/10.
- In Tandem: Max Mathews, Aaron Koblin, and Daniel Massey. Organizer. +Dialog Symposium. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. 03/19/10.
- LoveTech 1 Year Anniversary. Organizer. San Francisco. 01/30/10.
- Prototype Installation and Technical Advisor. Exhibition w/ Alphonzo Solorzano, Gabriel Dunne, Ryan Alexander, Miles Stemper and Daniel Massey. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. 01/09/10 – 02/03/10.
- Overlap MaxMSP/Jitter/Live Salon, Merry Maxmas. Organizer. w/ Adam Murry, Vlad Spears, and Elise Baldwin. 12/15/09.
- Overlap MaxMSP/Jitter/Live Salon, Dia de los Maxos. Organizer. w/ Jef Stott, Edison, Preshish Moments. 10/31/09.
- Open, Inaugural Exhibition. Installation and Technical Advisor. Exhibition w/ C.E.B. Reas, Stamen Design and Camille Utterback. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. 10/01/09 – 11/18/09.
- Overlap Salon #8. Organizer, Berkeley Center for New Media. 09/02/09
- Overlap Salon #7. Organizer. w/ Matt Ridenour, Peter Nyboer, Michael Zbyszynski. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts, San Francisco. 07/22/09
- Overlap Salon #6. Organizer. SoundArts, San Francisco. 06/03/09
- Overlap Salon #5. Organizer. SoundArts, San Francisco. 04/29/09
- Overlap Salon #4. Organizer. SoundArts, San Francisco. 03/11/09
- Overlap Salon #3. Organizer. SoundArts, San Francisco. 2/13/09
Presentations and Lectures
- Baroque Dreams: Live Multimedia Performance, Interpretive Culture, and Open Source Software. Libre Graphics Meeting 2010. Brussels, BE, 05/30/10.
- Innovation in Musical Instruments. swissnex San Francisco. 10/30/09.
- The Poly~ Object for Fun and Profit. Overlap Salon. Berkeley Center for New Media. Berkeley, CA. 09/02/09
- Detachable Polyphonic Pickup for Bowed Stringed Instruments. poster session. International Computer Music Conference 2010. Montreal, Canada. 08/19/09.
- The K-Bow and How to Sink All of your Personal Relationships by Being an Art Technologist. CNMAT Max Night School. UC Berkeley. Berkeley, CA. 07/31/09.
- The K-Bow with Jon Rose. STEIM. Amsterdam, Netherlands. 04/13/09.
- The K-Bow Sensor Bow System. IRCAM. Paris, France. 04/09/09.
- Media Art Technology for Fun and Profit. California College of the Arts. San Francisco, CA. 03/04/09.
- Alternative Controllers and the K-Bow. Berklee College of Music. Boston, MA. 07/23/09.
- Realtime Interactive Surround Sound From a Traditional String Instrument. BArCMuT Meeting. San Francisco, CA. 09/11/08.
- Zeroconf Networking for Musical Devices. MIDI Manufacturers Association Meeting. San Francisco, CA. 08/30/08.
- Making New Aesthetics for Art. Pecha Kucha Night. San Francisco, CA. 5/30/07.
- Composing for NuRoque in the MACIAS System. CCRMA, Stanford University. Palo Alto, CA. 05/23/06.
- Introduction to Network Cabling. Illinois Student Technology Conference. Chicago, IL. 1999.
Live Performance Engineering
- Ryoji Ikeda, datamatics [ver.1.0b]. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. August. 10, 2006.
- Jean Jacques Perrey. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. August 29, 2006.
- Skultz Kolgen, ASKAA and FLUUX/TERMINAL. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. August 16 & 17, 2006.
- The Living Jarboe & Gowns. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. September 9, 2006.
- Jochem Paap w/ Scott Pagano, Umfeld. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. September 15, 2006.
- Pan Sonic & Ryoichi Kurokawa, Crossmedia. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. September 23, 24 & 27, 2006.
- Deadbeat, Richard Devine, Antimatter, Wobbly. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. October 6 & 7, 2006.
- Thomas Feldman & Gudrun Gut. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. January 5, 2007.
- Alvin Curran w/ Cenk Ergün. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. January 25, 2007.
- Speedy J. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. January 27, 2007.
- Hazard & Joe Colley. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. January 28, 2007.
- Morton Subotnick w/ Sue C. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. April 6, 2007.
- Thomas Koner. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. June 22 & 23, 2007.
- John Ducan & John Wiese & Joshua Churchill. Compound. San Francisco, CA. July 20, 2007.
- Biosphere w/ Egbert Mittelstädt. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. September 15, 2007.
- Kangding Ray & Blixa Bargeld w/ Alva Noto. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. Sepember 28, 2007.
- Chris Watson & Florian Hecker. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. November 30, 2007.
- Louis Dufort and Francis Dhomont. Recombinant Media Labs. San Francisco, CA. December 1st, 2007.
- Lesley Flanigan and Tristan Perich, Sculpting Sound. Gray Area Foundation for the Arts. San Francisco, CA. Nov 19th, 2009.
Immersive and VR Systems Work
- RML Cinechamber, University of California San Diego, San Diego, CA, 2009
- StarCAVE, University of California San Diego, CalIT2, San Diego, CA, 2007
- Recombinant Media Labs, Brannan St. Location, San Francisco, CA, 2006 – 2008
Installation Art Work
- Acclair Art Valuation, with Luther Thie and Eyal Fried, 2009
- Hard Rock Wall, with Obscura Digital, 2009
- Moon Diaries, with Daniela Steinsapir, 2009
- Our Environment, with Snibbe Interactive, 2008
- TinGirl, with Daniela Steinsapir, 2008
- Scratches, with Daniela Steinsapir, 2008
- Scope, with Daniela Steinsapir, 2008
- Screen, with Noah Wardrip-Fruin et al., 2007
- Corridor, with Zachary James Watkins, 2006
Interactive Performance Work
- Rusty Air in Carolina, with Mason Bates, 2009
- Crosstalk, with Jay Cloit, 2007
- fleshlightmovement, with Kinesthetechic Sense, 2006
- TrioMetrik, with BEAM Foundation, 2006 – Present
Commercial Product Work
- SoftStep. with Keith McMillen Instruments, 2007 – Present.
- K-Bow. with Keith McMillen Instruments, 2007 – Present.
- StringPort. with Keith McMillen Instruments, 2007 – Present.
- Radio Baton. software, with Max Mathews and Tom Oberheim, 2008.
- Respondr. with Respondr Team, 2008.
- Vortex Surround Applications. with Immersive Media Research, 2006 – 2007.
- McMillen, Keith. et al. 2009. Sensor Bow for Stringed Instruments. U.S. Patent 20,090,308,232, filed May 15, 2009.
- Greater than Green. Home utility tracking application. Ruby on rails. 2007.
- FontBook. Information site for font storing application. AJAX country choosing box. 2005.
- Cingular devCentral. Phone database. Multi-page device filtering AJAX application. 2005.
- Countrywide Lending. Internal intranet site. Databased driven employee commenting forum board. ASP.net & ADO.net + Microsoft SQL server. 2004.
- Nagorny Karabach. Einsturzende Neubauten. Music Video. Audio/Visual technical support. 2009.
- Night Flyers. Boom operator. 2009.
- My Grief Is My Own. Supervising sound editor. 2008.
- Pleasant Company. Boom operator. 2008.
- Sharon Knight. Song of the Sea. Sound recorder. 2007.
- Indiscreet. Sound designer. 2006.
- Music Moves. Clairdee. Assistant Engineer. Sin-Drome. 2005.
- Bebe Donkey. Antoine Berthiaume & MaryClare Brzytwa. Recording Engineer. Ambiances Magnétiques. 2007.
- Ash. Molly Thompson. Recording Engineer. White Lime Records. 2007.
- Untitled Album. Eli Wise. Mix Engineer. Unreleased. 2007.
- Untitled Album. Erika Anderson. Mix Engineer. Unreleased. 2008.
- Boulanger, R. (Ed.). (2010). Programming Graphical Users Interfaces In Cocoa. In Audio Programming in C and C++, MIT Press.
- Threw, B. (2009). The K-Bow: A Wireless Sensor Bow for String Instruments. Mills College.
- Call for a Highly Distributed Metadata . (2007). Project Bar-B-Q Report.
- Overcoming Roadblocks in the Quest for Interactive Audio. (2007). Project Bar-B-Q Report.
- Jones, P. M. (Ed.). (1994). Forgotten soldiers: Murphysboro’s African-American Civil War veterans. Class Publications Committee ; Papyrus Consultants.
Affiliations and Professional Memberships
- Audio Engineering Society — Member
- ACM Siggraph — Member
- Project BarBQ
- IA-SIG — Member
- Long Now Foundation — Charter Member
- A+ — Certified Computer Technician (2000)
- CCNA — Cisco Certified Network Associate (2000)
Honors and Awards
- Mills College Mills Alumni Scholarship – 2005-2006
- Berklee College of Music Peter Gabriel Production Award in Music Synthesis – 2004
- Berklee College of Music Recognition of Excellence and Achievement Program Award – 2004
- Berklee Achievement Scholarship – 2003
- Berklee College of Music Dean’s List – Summer 2002, Spring 2003, Summer 2003
- University of Illinois – James Scholar Honors Program
- An Interview with Keith McMillen – Cycling ’74, March 2009
- Recombinant Media Labs Teams up with Gray Area for Downtown Arts Corridor – SFWeekly, February 2009
- Top 10 Products from Winter NAMM 2009 – Mix Magazine, February 2009
- Electronic Musician TV – February 2009
- K-Bow Instigates Symphonic Class Warfare – Gearwire, November 2008
- Keith McMillen Unveils String Instrument Interfaces – Electronista, November 2008
- Berklee College of Music Alumni Profile – February 2008
- Not Your Grandfathers Big Bands – July 2007
- Asphodel and Recombinant Media Labs – XLR8R TV, May 2007
- TrioMetrik on North Bay Reporter – March 2007
- Keith McMillen on KRON – March 2007
- Keith McMillen on Comcast Local Addition – January 2007
- 360-Degree Art for All Senses – SF Gate, October 2006
- Pushing Boundaries of Audio and Visual Surround – Mix Magazine, October 2006
- The Outer and Inner Limits of Sight and Sound Explored by Naut Humon and Recombinant Media Labs – SF360, August 2006