Archive for June, 2013



June 7, 2013

Hi all,

I hope that by my silence you don’t think I’ve been idling, on the contrary: it’s been busy for me!  b995 is largely done, but I’m still sorting out tiny bugs here and there.  There are several patches that still need my attention and I apologize for things taking so long.  To be honest, my attention has been pulled in other directions (and happily so!).

What I HAVE been doing is working on b996.  You might say, “Well, James, why would you do that?  I mean, you haven’t even finished b995??  This shit is buggy as hell!….”  and I wouldn’t argue with you.  But, as it turns out, sometimes that’s just the way things happen.  And this time that’s h0w things are happening.  I wanted to take a minute to spell out plans to those of you that had shown an interest in what’s going on.

I knew things would probably change drastically when Live9 came out, and they did.  b995 was a chore for me, and largely it was centered around making things that already worked in Live8 port over to the new version.  However, none of this was optimal, nor did it take advantage of any of the improvements in Live9.

While creating the modifications to the Push script for AumPush, I was forced (and pleased) to come up with a new way of mod-selection.  Those of you that have used the AumPush script will know what I mean out of necessity:  its just the way things work.  And the nice part about it is that it requries no explanation, really….its just the way things work.  You get it.  And I like it.  But using other controllers to do this same sort of trick isn’t as straightforward, as there is no LCD screen on most controllers, and not as many mode buttons.

I’d been eager to port some mod functionality over to the Base control script for a while, and this couple weeks has seen that happen. I wanted to use the same sort of mod selection mechanism as what I’d used on Push, thus dispensing with “modNumbers” and “modSlots” and all that confusing nonsense.  Base is such a simple and yet powerful device, and I wanted to keep it that way without muddling things by adding an extra layer of confusion with mods.  I’d been unable to use my desired approaches in prior versions of Live due to technical reasons, but to my amazement, when I wrote some new code to this end, things worked!  Ableton/Max had changed their codebase ever so slightly in such a way to allow exactly what I was trying to do!  I now had a much simpler connection routine without many of the limitations that I’d encountered on previous versions of the same type of mechanism.

I wanted to write enough  to explain how and why things will be changing for b996, and why b995 is taking so long.  Things will be changing rather drastically in upcoming versions, and here are the most consequential changes:

Monomodular is a device controller.  

If you select a mod device in Live, it will be selected for control by your controller.  That simple.  (The current paradigm of holding down shift to select a modSlot will still exist on the controllers that support it presently, but it will select a mod in a different, name-based manner, similar to how the DeviceSelectorComponent works in my Livid scripts).  Also in  this regard, you’ll begin seeing the introduction of Python based mods that are recalled any time you select certain Live devices.

Unlimited mods.  

There are no longer modSlots or modNumbers.  Mods are just devices now.

Universal mods.  

I’ve wasted a lot of time trying to maintain slightly different versions of the same mods for Monomodular and different Livid controllers.  This is frustrating, as most of this stuff if essentially the same, with minor differences of details that require constant maintenance to multitudes of files every time a small change is made.  In the future, all mods will be universally supported by all controllers for which I’ve written scripts.  More about this in future posts, as I’m still working out the details.

Easier mod editing.  

Did you ever want to open up a mod and mess around with it?  Or create your own?  Things should be much easier in this regard in b996.

That’s all I have for you now.  If you want a sneak preview of how things will be and you happen to have access to a Livid Base, the new mod design is already in place for it.  Otherwise, I’ll begin porting things over as I have time.


Happy blinking!