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Old but awesome: The YouTube piano

Ever wanted to turn YouTube into a musical instrument? Now you can, with the YouTube piano: a creative use of YouTube's annotation system.

The YouTube Piano uses YouTube's timed annotations to play notes from the video's timeline. CNET

This is nowhere near as cool as that Nintendo Wario game ad/video hybrid, or the Honda headlight ad/video that surfaced on Vimeo last year. But it is more useful than both of them combined.

Meet the YouTube piano, a video of piano notes that has on-screen annotations that skip to that particular part of the video and thus the corresponding note. In practice, you could play a song, as some YouTube commenters have done with deep-linked comments. But to be honest, it can't (and won't) sound close to the real thing.

Still, this is about the only useful--and non-annoying use of on-screen YouTube annotations I've seen in a long time. Kudos to its creators, Adam Ben Ezra, Guy Dayan, and Daniel Barak, who run an entire channel of other, similar-functioning instruments. These include a pipe organ, electric guitar, and shaker.

I'm still holding out for a banjo version, so I can strum a little Deliverance.