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Best Practices for Max development

November 3, 2011 | 1:06 am

A problem which turned out to be my error reminded me of a conversation I had with one of the Max developers at the conference a few weeks ago about the notion of creating a "best practices" document that would be very helpful in preventing many problems by less experienced Max users who are not so familiar with the idioms.

I’m wondering if anyone has already written such a document…I thnk it would be very beneficial to many, particularly as the username grows.

D


November 3, 2011 | 12:02 pm

Harking from the days before phrases like "best practice", the definitive Max tutorials have always been Peter Elsea’s, which are at:
http://cnmat.berkeley.edu/link/1319
Amongst all the other essential stuff, there are chapters on befriending math, program design and neatness,
Cheers
Roger


November 3, 2011 | 1:26 pm

Thank you — some extremely useful stuff in that collection of PDFs including bits that I wish I had known about before I started my project.

I do take issue with his definitions of top-down vs bottom up development (I don’t think it has anything to do with writing code on paper first nor with the possible difficulty required to create an algorithm).

However, it reminds me of my one significant pet peeve with the Max environment that gets in my way when I do top down development. If I could have one wish (for today anyway), it would be that if I change the arguments to an object (particularly an abstraction), the new instance would appear with the same dimensions (width) as the previous one so that all the existing connections to/from it are not suddenly drawn at new angles forcing me to futz with resizing it to straighten everything out again.

So there!


November 3, 2011 | 1:42 pm

After retyping, option-click (alt-click) in some white space elsewhere in the window.
No more wishes for you today. :)


November 3, 2011 | 1:47 pm

Oh man……..

THANK YOU

Hmmm, wishing works — I’ll try another wish tomorrow :-)


November 3, 2011 | 2:08 pm

There are a lot of good best practices in the tutorials around here. Also, the forum is full of them. It would be cool if they were all in one place, but they came from people taking the time to unit test and find a best solution. Unfortunately, most of my best practices come from my own work; you just seem to actually internalize them and understand them that way.

You get into a weird discussion of what "best" means (faster doesn’t mean clearer and easier, etc). I think a list of tips could be cool, but tutorials of information integrity and unit testing would be much more useful for all of us. I don’t use max this way, but you’re guaranteed to think more critically about what is coming in and out of your objects: http://cycling74.com/2007/02/05/managing-complex-patches-in-max/


November 3, 2011 | 3:15 pm

Nice thread !

Thanks for all the useful links and tips :)


November 3, 2011 | 3:25 pm

You know, this totally gave me an idea, what would you all think of a "best Threads" category? At first something as simple as combing through old posts with helpful tidbits and making the best of collection manually, but I think it would be amazing if everyone could simply vote on the usefulness of a thread and the best ones end up in a category of their own.

What do you think?


November 3, 2011 | 4:12 pm

Great idea. I’m spending quite some time just browsing through threads seeing if I can pick up some good advice or tips, it would be great to share the useful ones


November 3, 2011 | 4:22 pm

Some excellent tips in that article. I particularly like the use of LEDs for debugging. Also, his (I assume) notion of block structured programming aligns much more closely to a top-down development style. Coupled with having my wish granted by Christian, I’m a very happy camper right now!

D

___________
but you’re guaranteed to think more critically about what is coming in and out of your objects: http://cycling74.com/2007/02/05/managing-complex-patches-in-max/


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