The Arduino philosophy is based on making design rather than talking about it. It is a constant search for faster and more accurate ways to build better prototypes.
The classic engineering relies on a strict process from getting to A to B while the Arduino way is based on maybe getting lost in the way and finding C instead. This is he process of tinkering that we are so found of; playing with the medium in an open-ended way, finding the unexpected. In this search we also selected a number of software packages that enable that process, this constant manipulation of the software and hardware medium.
"If you put your engineer's head on, you'll see things very differently vs. if you put your artist's head on", said Don.
Donald Delmar Davis of Tempus Dictum went over creating sound using the Arduino's built in Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) and Direct Digital Synthesis using resistive ladders. We will investigate using the Piezo element as both a simple speaker and an input trigger.
He reviewed the Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) from a hardware and software perspective, and looked at a couple of useful integrated circuits (the lm324 and the lm368).
More at http://dorkbotpdx.org/