May 12, 2018

deejae

this goes out to all the DJs…

I adore spinnin’ records really loud, and trying to evoke all manner of emotions and recontextualising sounds by blending tracks greater than the sum of their parts. I made a thing called deejae which intersects with some other nerd tendencies I have, like data viz.

Digital DJ software like Native Instruments’ Traktor stores a user’s tarck library/play history in XML structures similar to popular audio library management software like iTunes. Inside the software, you can get hold of common metrics like play count, date added and date last played for tracks in your library. It’s purposefully optimised for DJs to use during a performance, and so the software isn’t set up to try and get at more complex questions, like “what tracks do I tend to play in the latter stages of my DJ sets?”, or “what was I playing in my sets in 2016?”. Neither is it for visualising the process/evolution of a DJ set, after the fact (post-match analysis, if you will).

deejae is a free-to-use web application that attempts to empower DJs with a tool that can answer these kinds of questions. Examine your selections set-by-set, or see what patterns emerge over longer periods. Support exists for Traktor users only right now, but if there’s appetite I’ll look to add support for other DDJ software soon enough.

I want deejae to be an ongoing open-source project, with user feedback driving development. As described above, expect more functionality/features in response to how DJs want to interact with it. Hit me up with ideas / feedback / bugs. If you’re a developer, file an issue/pull request over at the GitHub repo (also home to all source code).

I prefer to unwind by DJing. I learned that from Mike D from the Beastie Boys. After a show, he would DJ. Once I saw that, I wanted to do that. And now DJing is like my lifeline. I love the power it represents. (Questlove)