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In the last decade, a number of software-based virtual studio environments have emerged. Todays advances in communications provide viable and cost-effective alternatives to typical hardware-based production studios, and thanks to advances in microprocessor technology, it is now possible to create high quality music using little more than a single laptop computer. Such advances have democratized music creation leading to a massive increase in the amount of home-produced electronic music available to the general public via the internet. Artists can now also individualize their production practices by creating personalized software synthesizers, effects modules, and various composition environments. Devices that once existed exclusively in the hardware domain can easily have virtual counterparts.