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Why not just limit allowed midi status to: Note On, Note Off, CC, Aftertouch, and Pitch Bend? Or maybe be readonly?

Is there a way to escalate that I'm not seeing? AFAI remember, all programming is done through status messages 11110000 and above.


Full Disclosure: I made a web synth and really want to be able to use midi to play with it.

I don't see why the API should even allow enumerating devices. Put that behind a browser dialog. Webpages don't get to enumerate directories/files on your system - they pop up a file picker dialog. The same should happen with device selection. Once you've granted the site access to a device, it can ask you to associate a name with the handle, and provide whatever shiny device selection / device management UI it wants.

Better yet, reasonably abstract the raw MIDI protocol away with something that has suitable security and privacy properties for the web, and translate it to MIDI on the host. In any case, the current proposal does not seem to cut it.

I agree that it would be nice to have a limited amount of the Web MIDI spec, but bear in mind the staggering few people who actually have MIDI devices, and the even more staggering few of those people who want to use whatever website has midi support for its features.

To answer your question about why not to just limit the API: because that would be another data point to use to fingerprint users, and because the amount of engineering time that would have to go into Web MIDI support (including testing, security auditing, etc.) would never be worthwhile compared to putting those same developers on something that might be beneficial to vastly more users.

(Also note that Firefox made the same decision to implement nothing at all.)

This is just a philosophical standpoint, but I think supporting the interests a small group of experimental pioneers is generally more useful than their numbers would imply.

The idea that "staggering few" is a negative disappoints, given it has almost always been the "staggering few" who've progressed humanity.

Yeah. It's crazy to me that they haven't decided to create some abstract virtual midi instrument. That you can instruct the browser to pass through to your devices.

Exactly. Apple can choose to implement what they consider to be a safe interface for WebMIDI. Instead, they refuse all of it?

In my opinion, Apple has an incentive to keep the web crippled in some aspects, and this is just another symptom of that deeper underlying cause.

Well, I guess if I ever need WebMIDI features, I'll put a banner for Safari users to switch to Firefox.

(Or.. Maybe Firefox on iOS is forced to use the same engine as Safari..?)

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