Custom front ends and music app APIs

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Custom front ends and music app APIs

Iain Duncan
Hi folks, I'm exploring the idea of taking the user interface part of my
live rig project and turning it into an open framework/toolkit for
building front ends in C or C++ to any API capable music app or chain of
them. The idea being that one can build their own live user interface as
they see fit, and then hinge interface methods to audio functions
through a set of user defined functions that talk to the audio back end
through the audio api. In my case the wonderful Csound API ( thanks
developers, it rocks right hard! ). Should my little prototype succeed,
I would like to experiment with making it suitable for other APIs as
well. I'm wondering what other audio platforms would be suitable to
experiment with. So far I know SuperCollider has a good API. Does PD? I
assume the closed source ones mostly don't, and I don't really care to
help them along anyway. Are there any others out there that would be
good to look at and might be useful to use in conjunction with Csound? I
like the idea of one customized multi-client front end interface that is
simultaneously controlling a daisy chain of useful apps, ie Csound,
LADSPA, Jammin, etc.

Thoughts? Suggestions for apps? Good examples of simple server-client
code for a programmer who hasn't done this before? ;)

Thanks
Iain
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Re: Custom front ends and music app APIs

Victor Lazzarini
Good idea.
As far as I am aware, PD has a Class development API, but
to do something beyond that is more involved (although
class development is easy-peasy).
I don't think there is any Computer Music Language with
an API as good as csound5 (anyone correct me if I am
wrong). It's a great strength.

Victor

>
> Hi folks, I'm exploring the idea of taking the user
> interface part of my  live rig project and turning it into
> an open framework/toolkit for  building front ends in C or
> C++ to any API capable music app or chain of  them. The
> idea being that one can build their own live user
> interface as  they see fit, and then hinge interface
> methods to audio functions  through a set of user defined
> functions that talk to the audio back end  through the
> audio api. In my case the wonderful Csound API ( thanks
> developers, it rocks right hard! ). Should my little
> prototype succeed,  I would like to experiment with making
> it suitable for other APIs as  well. I'm wondering what
> other audio platforms would be suitable to  experiment
> with. So far I know SuperCollider has a good API. Does PD?
> I  assume the closed source ones mostly don't, and I don't
> really care to  help them along anyway. Are there any
> others out there that would be  good to look at and might
> be useful to use in conjunction with Csound? I  like the
> idea of one customized multi-client front end interface
> that is  simultaneously controlling a daisy chain of
> useful apps, ie Csound,  LADSPA, Jammin, etc.
>
> Thoughts? Suggestions for apps? Good examples of simple
> server-client  code for a programmer who hasn't done this
> before? ;)
>
> Thanks
> Iain
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> Send bugs reports to this list.
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Re: Custom front ends and music app APIs

Martin Peach
In reply to this post by Iain Duncan
Now that there exists a csoundapi~ object for pd (thanks to V.
Lazzarini), I think the easiest way is to use pd as the front end. Pure
Data also has its own dsp objects as well as OSC and generic networking
and MIDI. The only thing I miss is the ability to overlay fancy artwork
on the controls. I've done a bit of this using the flashserver objects
(using xmlsocket in flash), but of course flash is an expensive pile of
bits. I've been studying the pd code for a few weeks now, and I think it
should be possible to import images into objects, it's a Tcl/Tk thing.

Martin

Iain Duncan wrote:

> Hi folks, I'm exploring the idea of taking the user interface part of
> my live rig project and turning it into an open framework/toolkit for
> building front ends in C or C++ to any API capable music app or chain
> of them. The idea being that one can build their own live user
> interface as they see fit, and then hinge interface methods to audio
> functions through a set of user defined functions that talk to the
> audio back end through the audio api. In my case the wonderful Csound
> API ( thanks developers, it rocks right hard! ). Should my little
> prototype succeed, I would like to experiment with making it suitable
> for other APIs as well. I'm wondering what other audio platforms would
> be suitable to experiment with. So far I know SuperCollider has a good
> API. Does PD? I assume the closed source ones mostly don't, and I
> don't really care to help them along anyway. Are there any others out
> there that would be good to look at and might be useful to use in
> conjunction with Csound? I like the idea of one customized
> multi-client front end interface that is simultaneously controlling a
> daisy chain of useful apps, ie Csound, LADSPA, Jammin, etc.
>
> Thoughts? Suggestions for apps? Good examples of simple server-client
> code for a programmer who hasn't done this before? ;)
>
> Thanks
> Iain



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Re: Custom front ends and music app APIs

Iain Duncan
> Now that there exists a csoundapi~ object for pd (thanks to V.
> Lazzarini), I think the easiest way is to use pd as the front end. Pure
> Data also has its own dsp objects as well as OSC and generic networking
> and MIDI. The only thing I miss is the ability to overlay fancy artwork
> on the controls. I've done a bit of this using the flashserver objects
> (using xmlsocket in flash), but of course flash is an expensive pile of
> bits. I've been studying the pd code for a few weeks now, and I think it
> should be possible to import images into objects, it's a Tcl/Tk thing.
>
> Martin

You're right, that is certainly the *easiest* way. We use PD to
prototype interfaces and make hardware mockups to do work when the giant
KX-88 and the fader boxes aren't around. However, what I'm envisioning
is meant to go quite aways beyond that. I want one server app
interfacing with the various audio APIs ( say csound, LADSPA, Jamin, etc
) and have the ability to have multiple clients send control information
through midi, rs-232, OSC, network connections, etc. The idea is to
allow multiple users to work on the same sequencer/synthesis engine at
the same time and allow one to do complex input parsing that gets to be
a pain in the neck to program in visual languages like PD. I've got that
working in csound by using midi only for input and dividing input
streams into channel groups ( ie user 1 gets channels 1-4, etc ), but I
would like to do a proper job of it so we can add other input devices
like hijacked old PDAs, home made rs-232 gak, mini displays, etc.

Ideally I'd like to make it possible for the server to work for everyone
without tinkering and users could rewrite input functions and interface
functions in fairly simple C.

Iain










>
> Iain Duncan wrote:
>
>> Hi folks, I'm exploring the idea of taking the user interface part of
>> my live rig project and turning it into an open framework/toolkit for
>> building front ends in C or C++ to any API capable music app or chain
>> of them. The idea being that one can build their own live user
>> interface as they see fit, and then hinge interface methods to audio
>> functions through a set of user defined functions that talk to the
>> audio back end through the audio api. In my case the wonderful Csound
>> API ( thanks developers, it rocks right hard! ). Should my little
>> prototype succeed, I would like to experiment with making it suitable
>> for other APIs as well. I'm wondering what other audio platforms would
>> be suitable to experiment with. So far I know SuperCollider has a good
>> API. Does PD? I assume the closed source ones mostly don't, and I
>> don't really care to help them along anyway. Are there any others out
>> there that would be good to look at and might be useful to use in
>> conjunction with Csound? I like the idea of one customized
>> multi-client front end interface that is simultaneously controlling a
>> daisy chain of useful apps, ie Csound, LADSPA, Jammin, etc.
>>
>> Thoughts? Suggestions for apps? Good examples of simple server-client
>> code for a programmer who hasn't done this before? ;)
>>
>> Thanks
>> Iain
>
>
>
>
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