I have been playing music for about 30 years and used electronic instruments for about 25. Unsurprisingly this involces a lot of MIDI.
Last year I got some of the very cool Korg nanoSERIES2 controllers (http://www.korg.com/nanoseries2). They have USB, appearing as MIDI devices. This is great for plugging into the computer and using with a sequencer like Ableton Live or a soft synth like Reaktor but it sucks hard if you want to control a MIDI device. You need to use a computer with another USB MIDI adapter, routing events from the Korg controller to the MIDI ports. Wouldn’t it be great to have a tiny computer to act as an appliance for this?
For reasons that were once clear I’m sure, I have about 5 Bifferboards (http://bifferos.co.uk). These are small, low-power x86-compatible machines with Ethernet and USB that run Linux. There is mididings (http://das.nasophon.de/mididings/) which is a generalised MIDI processing system. It can easily do what I need. This all sounds great but (and it is a big but, I cannot lie) mididings uses Boost and JACK (and some other stuff). This hugeness is fine on a desktop, doable on a Raspberry Pi, but painful on the Bifferboard. Sure, maybe I should just bite the bullet and admit that in this modern world the Rπ is an appliance but man, that hurts.