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Ableton Live
Live began as one of the rare, commercially available, inspiring real live performance software instruments designed by performers for performers. It`s now wildly popular as a tool for sequencing and triggering electronic music in a live setting.
Forum Ircam
Forum Ircam is a Software User Group and offers access to software and services through an annual membership.
Multi-User cross Media Synthesizer - a distributed application that allows multiple players to generate, synthesize and process images, sounds and text within a shared realtime environment. A direct descendant from Image/ine, developed at STEIM by Tom Demeyer and Steina Vazulka.  
The home of MAX/MSP
Pure Data
Pure Data, or PD, is a free and open source dataflow programming language for audio and video developed by Miller Puckette. It`s similar to MaxMSP (in fact much of the MSP code in Max comes from PD).
Fresh and interesting collective effort in software development for Audio Units and VST
One of the most powerful real time audio synthesis programming languages. Free and Open Source, originally developed by James McCartney.
Tutorial on MIDI and Music Synthesis
The Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) protocol has been widely accepted and utilized by musicians and composers since its conception in 1983. MIDI data is a very efficient method of representing musical performance information, and this makes MIDI an attractive protocol not only for composers or performers, but also for computer applications which produce sound, such as multimedia presentations or computer games. However, the lack of standardization of synthesizer capabilities hindered applications developers and presented new MIDI users with a rather steep learning curve to overcome.