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Soundflower is an open-source software solution developed for Mac OS X that enables users to route audio signals between applications. Created by Cycling '74 - an award-winning music software and tools developer - along with its community of programmers and audio engineers, Soundflower allows users to record system audio, stream music and capture sounds from any application on their computer.
Soundflower can trace its history back to the early 2000s when Cycling '74 began developing Max/MSP music software. Max/MSP is a visual programming language designed for musical instrument control that allows users to build custom instruments, effects and processing tools; one limitation of Max/MSP was its inability to communicate with other applications using anything other than MIDI protocols - an issue solved with Soundflower!
Cycling '74 decided to develop a software tool called Soundflower that would enable audio communication among apps running on Mac OS X computers. Since its release as open-source software in 2004, Soundflower has become one of the most widely-used audio signal routing platforms, used by musicians, sound engineers, podcasters, video editors and more from all around the world.
Over the years, Soundflower has seen numerous updates and revisions by developers contributing to its project, with this community of contributors continually making new features and bug fixes. Cycling '74 released an enhanced version called Soundflowerbed that included a user interface for easier audio settings configuration; however, recently, its reliability on Mac OS X updates has diminished somewhat, prompting Loopback and Blackhole alternatives to be developed as viable replacements.
Soundflower remains an invaluable and versatile audio routing solution for Mac OS X and has played an essential role in shaping music and multimedia applications over the years.
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