Forums > MaxMSP

No job market for MaxMSP?

September 29, 2012 | 5:45 am

I am teaching myself Javascript and have been for a while now and when I decided to make the jump to teach myself programming I paralleled the decision in alignment with the job market. I also realized that the Web Audio API was in development hence my desire to learn audio based coding with something I knew would be in demand. My question is…

How come when I do a craigs list search for audio coding, audio programming, game audio etc absolutley nothing appears for MaxMSP ?

Another thing I’m curious about are the small influx of digital arts colleges now teaching MaxMSP. It seems that C74′ has created a very strong market in the hobbyist and education areas, but there are literally no professional companies using this software for anything beyond "mockups". Am I missing something here?



dtr
September 29, 2012 | 6:05 am

Companies? Probably not many. Independent developers, a bunch more. I get jobs for developing interactive applications where the tools to use are up to me to decide, and I often pick Max. Also people have been finding me through this forum when they want to contract someone for a Max job specifically. Usually other artists that want to outsource the technical development of a project. And yes, I also get jobs from design and architecture academies for developing their prototypes in Max. Teaching jobs as well.


September 29, 2012 | 7:27 am

It seems MaxMSP is a live performance tool for artists but not a programming tool for game companies or serious application development. The former makes sense but for some reason it seems to be marketed as the latter, which it apparently isn’t.


September 29, 2012 | 7:39 am

For me, it’s a tool for creating interactive media and artworks, and I’ve been lucky enough to show off those kinds works in museums. I think Max is what you make of it, and its place in a professional environment is up to you too. Given that you can make anything from quickly changeable museum interactives, sensory experiences, and any number of performance utilities, I’d say a generic ‘job’ with Max as a skill requirement would probably be a little ambiguous.

As with all of these things, it’s not going to be as easy as Google->’MaxMSP Jobs’. I’ve had the best experience with Max when people are expecting to see some sort of interactive work but don’t know what tools I’ll be using. Be creative, combine it with other tools and make the most of what is a brilliant platform to work on. I’ve been working with various bits of code for the last few days – working with Java and Processing – and sometimes find myself wishing that I could just do some of it in Max.

I think there are people more qualified to talk about this than me anyway, look to people like Luke Woodbury, Julien Bayle, and Andrew Spitz.


September 29, 2012 | 9:42 am

I think my point is that MaxMSP isn’t a tool that has the flexibility of a conventional programming language. In that regard it kind of actually isn’t "what you make of it ", it simply isn’t designed to integrate into environments the same way that conventional programming languages allow. As a kind of "art tool" I can see people having a lot of fun and building performance based things integrated with sensors etc , but as a tool that can put you in the same in-demand league as a programmer using a conventional language it is simply is not that. MaxMSP may be able to bridge with game engines but I’ve never heard of a title actually shipping using MaxMSP as it’s audio engine.

If you want to make art or be an "interactive" engineer for live stage shows it seems like a very nice tool to have. If you want to get into programming perse’ using a language that you can learn in it’s entirety and be confident that in the end you will be in-demand and not wasting your time, I don’t see MaxMSP being the smart choice.


September 29, 2012 | 11:08 am

I still think Max is a highly flexible tool that shouldn’t be underestimated, but yeah, you’ve said it: it’s not a programming language. If you want to be a programmer, learn to program, if you want to make cool interactive stuff, learn Max.

Personally, I find Max suitable for a lot of my needs, and it’s sometimes a good mental challenge to push it to its limits. Beyond that, it’s been a great gateway to areas that it can’t reach, giving me the confidence to take some of the principals I’ve learned to try and tackle new languages and environments.

I don’t think Cycling advertise Max as a replacement for programming languages – it was never designed to be, even in its early form – so don’t treat it as such and you can have a great time with it.


September 29, 2012 | 11:09 am

Max, in it’s core, is a visual programming language and thus has a great flexibility by creating the possibility to combine inputs and outputs of all kind by connecting objects. The mere nature of this visual workflow sets it apart from a great deal of syntax based languages. Max doesn’t have to be the same as these former, it’s not made for that.
Relatively speaking, the IT world consists more of corporate integrated solutions that consist of server/client packages, cloud services and todays mobile applications. Max can’t really play a role here and it shouldn’t. If you switch more to the creative industries with it’s great share of independent developers, a smaller market, I bet you will see Max more, to quite a lot even. There toolbox is different than than from an .NET web programmer but that’s just the way it is. I work in theatre and I see Max used a lot to add multimedia to performances. I provides artists with a means to explore a new world. Their toolbox is a computer, beamers, dancers, light, sound, … That’s were the independent developers come in that tend to combine Max with other platforms/frameworks to get the best result.
Max does integrate with other environments (by using the very popular OSC everything is possible, Javascript, LUA, eg.) . It’s just a different way than a traditional API, but it works as well.

Moreover I bet theres a lot of people around, also on this forum including me, that took the step to learn C(++), Java, Javascript, Python, … after spending some time in Max, having created a sense of programming workflow. That’s for me the beautiful thing of it (and I’m still using Max a lot!)


September 29, 2012 | 11:46 am

there can be work with max/msp/jitter.
it really does depend on where you ask and what you can offer in terms of patching.

sometimes you just have to make the business yourself, like most people who have done things with max. especially when max & pluggo was a big part in vst/au/rtas creation some years ago [sniff sniff]. a lot of people had good luck with it.
also myself, first started making tools, sold some, got approached by people to build things for them, and now do stuff in computer games, using max. also sound creation for sample packs, which i use max for, or based on midi stuff. i also do jitter visuals for club evenings for high ranking djs but only because i was in the right place at the right time.
though it has taken time and plenty of proving myself.

its a bitch of a road to do something just with max, thats why its better to have other things to help along with the process.
but in general, you have to make the business yourself.


September 29, 2012 | 12:12 pm

Could you explain to me how or what "stuff" you do in computer games with MaxMSP exactly?
This is exactly the type of the area I’m curious about.


September 29, 2012 | 12:16 pm

it involves mainly audio, also midi things.
i use max a lot for handling messages like osc. also as well using things like max for live for music creation for computer games. and even routing to logic etc

max can make things i have not heard/seen before. its kind of like a small add-on for my sounds sometimes.
though try to keep it as simple as possible, because you can spend more time patching than working ;)


September 29, 2012 | 3:12 pm

note that "artist" is superior to "company".

"company" must have been something acceptable in the 80ies, but today it is no longer cool.

-110


September 29, 2012 | 6:45 pm

Cycling 74′ IS a "Company". I’m sure they laugh at teenage "angst" statements like that. :)

@Lewish Edwards, I see. You’re using MaxMSP for sound creation for games, not as an audio engine.


September 30, 2012 | 1:47 am

btw, the "university" model of life also has failed.


September 30, 2012 | 3:30 am

@Roman Thilenius

Ok, I’m not going to get into a pissing contest. I’ll just wish you well in using software tools like MaxMSP which are created by a profitable company like cycling’74 which in turn was founded by a university graduate with a doctorate in Hearing & Speech Sciences to help you do your "superior" art while paradoxically making you a brand cheerleader who presumably pays them for their software.

You can believe art is "superior" all you want, but you’re really just setting yourself up to have your own hypocrisy fed back to you.

And I really don’t know what any of this has to do with my initial query which has been answered at this point.


September 30, 2012 | 8:15 am

I consider the work I do in max-msp extremely "serious" indeed, and sometimes it helps me pay the bills. I wouldn’t start a game-dev company based around it though…. And I’ve blown away a few game-engine programmers with some techniques that I would have only discovered thru msp/jitter. They got much better fps though….


September 30, 2012 | 12:23 pm

I think that visual programming environments (Max, PD etc.) are really at the borderline of the definition of a ‘programming language’. Strictly speaking, they definitely are programming languages, at least in the Wikipedia sense (languages that can express all possible algorithms, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Programming_language ). However, I personally don’t consider Max a programming language, for me as a composer it is much more a toolbox for creating sound, a playground for musical ideas.

I wouldn’t really use Max for computer game programming. A serious reason for this is that you can’t embed Max in an external software, at least I don’t know of any ways that would let me run Max in the background, without a GUI and menu system and an application icon appearing in the Dock (in other words, you can’t embed Max into a program in the PD-sense). However, if I was a game designer, I would surely use Max in my lab to create the sounds used by that game.

Hope this helps,
Ádám


September 30, 2012 | 7:25 pm

@lessmore

"contest" and most other forms of competition (as opposed to cooperation) are also out. these models also have failed too often.

about cycling74, i am not really sure if cycling74 employs someone for programming max/msp, except for the potions of max/msp which were made with max/msp. but in case they do: gratulations, because then you just answered your own initial query. :)

@adam and all

hard to tell where the borderline is but i think one could say max makes a perfect programming language for sounddesign and for prototyping stuff you will later rewrite in machine language for 56k.

or does a "real" language need to have something to do with making stable consumer applications? (or with the existence of a job market?)

a language by definition is a system of symbols including how they interact, and how humans (or animals or machines) do aquire and use it to communicate.
these symbols have certain meanings, and languages can be read, written, or spoken in a specific manner and translated into other languages.

now isnt that … maxmsp? :)

-110


September 30, 2012 | 10:20 pm

lessmore, try to ignore Roman, our resident advisor on all things cool.

For me Max is an environment in which programming can be embedded. And for a long time I would just bounce off the walls, kidding myself that it would be all I’d need to know. Max is great for prototyping, you can build applications in it, but you’re at the mercy of other people’s code when things go wrong, and when you start to get problems that are almost impossible to reproduce reliably, it’s frustrating. I’ve started my programming journey with Javascript, and find myself using it more and more within Max now, because when I’m developing software, it genuinely makes my life easier. Nobody comes to pat you on the back when you’ve solved some headache of a problem in 1 week just using Max, when you could have done it in a day using another language. It’s your time that you waste if you work like that.

In response to your original question, I do not think that a person can rely solely on Max for employment that pays the bills. There’s probably < 50 people who can call it their main environment, but I'd imagine all of them have extra skills with code and/or hardware knowledge.


October 1, 2012 | 3:14 am

There are companies that use Max/MSP as a development language. Just not so many that they advertise every week on Craig’s list. You’re more likely to see a "Help Wanted Max/MSP" developer on this list, and only once maybe every month or three.


October 7, 2012 | 11:38 am

No one’s mentioned another potential market: working freelance, assisting artists on their projects. I am regularly asked to do this type of work (which, unfortunately, I cannot do). If you lived in, say, New York, London, or Berlin, it’d be possible to get a lot of work in this area, if you pushed for it. You’d have to be very good and very easy to work with. You’d also have to relish working with artists, who can be unpredictable, and whose budgets range from excellent to miserable.



dtr
October 7, 2012 | 2:19 pm

> No one’s mentioned another potential market:

I did, 3rd post ;)

For me it’s a (fun and useful) side thing but I know people that make this their main occupation. Don’t limit yourself to Max though. Much better prospects if you can deliver a wide range of skills.


October 7, 2012 | 7:12 pm

If you don’t working on your own projects (doing personal projects in max is something typical, I think) you may – in my opinion – to try to establish some cooperations with people looking for a developer or an art institution. It is a real market in main opinion.


October 9, 2012 | 8:36 pm

FUCK! I missed an argument! (hehehehe, it seems Roman is the one around here with the greatest convictions of integrity over individuality and personality :D)

@lessmore
You’ve been on these forums for about 2 weeks, it’s understandable you’ve never seen Roman around here before. Trust me, if you don’t understand what he’s telling you, you’re probably not going to want to find a Max/MSP job, because the kind of people who work in such an industry are alot like him: creative, original, and distrusting-of-capitalistic-authorities. People HAVE to be this way in order to retain their sanity, particularly doing work day in and day out with something as anomalous as Max. Everything he said was absolute truth. And you probably won’t be able to find a Max/MSP job if you’re thinking too formulaically about max/msp(meanwhile max/msp is not a very formulaic way of programming, it is actually one of the most idiosyncratic).

also, 3 weeks ago i posted my latest max/msp job:
http://cycling74.com/forums/topic.php?id=42495
(i do not post to boast, only to inspire… but the inspiration should be taken with a grain of salt which i’m hoping to explain…)
max/msp jobs you’ll find are not the way to go to make the brunt of your living. when you use max/msp in the professional world, rather than in a personal artistic way, you learn real quick exactly what Mike S was saying about efficient use of time.
Max/MSP started out being peddled to academia first and foremost for a reason: it serves best as a pedagogical tool. Max/MSP is like the Alice of the newmedia-programming world. (I know, I know… everyone here wants to think they’re ridiculously smart and special for knowing it well. i’m sorry, no one here is, simply by their max/msp skill alone. the people who are most active on these forums(i’ve been watching you all!), are here so much because they often need to get somewhere else…i’m sure many will try to deny this to themselves, too, much like i did for the longest time ;) but they would have to show by example, how their careers have blossomed. And outside of academia, the only people who could show this with any truly admirable proof, are probably too busy to be here. that’s how the elite get to where they are: NOT just by sharing and borrowing, but by teaching themselves in any cutthroat and competitive way that they can. it’s a bit like the music-industry, except since max/msp is far less lucrative, it is a much uglier slaughter for those who cannot make the grade). This also goes along with what Kurt Ralske was saying: you can find even more work serving free-lance artists, but those artists will constantly lookout for anyone who has more skill and can offer it cheaper than you, forcing you to be careful what you share with others and what you contribute to the artists themselves, and it also forces you most importantly, to put aside your own ideas about creativity and efficiency, just so you can facilitate rather than compete with the artists’ visions themselves. it is often uninspiring, unless you are lucky to work with the best artist of your liking(then you take on the project out of sheer interest: but this is not how most real-world jobs go, even real-world max/msp jobs… employers often hire max developers when those employers are not smart enough to think of a code-based solution, or they know they can pay much less for max development than something more low-level < -in fact, that is the average max developers' most attractive trait to employers: being willing to work for absolute shit pay...).
I am also living proof, out of the past several years, the job i posted above was by far the best, because the designer, Christian Bannister was inspiring and brilliant. But he still worked under a larger umbrella company, who paid me according to the less inspiring criteria i listed above. Even the successes in this world are minute, short-lived, and hard to keep up, let alone grow.
When you finally find a Max/MSP job(i’ve had a few more than this one), it feels pretty unspectacular. You end up realizing that you’ve wasted quite a bit of time learning how to be amateur about development because you could’ve learned a more generally applicable programming language that would make you more enticing to employers mostly because you would share the same coding knowledge and techniques that other people in the real world have: the ability to truly think in terms of object-oriented-programming without having it obscured by a graphical programming environment(the graphical nature makes it hard to show how objects work in terms of classes and how those classes can relate behaviorally, putting priority on ease of data flow and communication, rather than organization). If you learn a ‘real’ language, then you end up being able to collaborate more easily with real people in the real world for this very reason.
But there’s more: you also realize the benefit of code-based object-oriented-programming. Controlling data flow can be much more concise and efficient, because you don’t have to learn all the idiosyncracies of the max graphical programming environment in order to just get something simple. Also, have you ever thought about how difficult it is to share a development project of Max/MSP over a versioning system? (hopefully the new project system will improve on this, but so far, it’s a nightmare…)… Max gets you to think graphically, in a world best served by code. Code is better and more easily organized, it is more efficient, and MOST IMPORTANTLY: is the most concise and efficient set of systems which humans have found so far to implement ‘design patterns’(the conciseness and efficiency varies from language to language but basic coding principles still apply to all code-based languages which, even if they exist in Max, are normally obscured by the graphical nature of max).

if you want to find a job involving max/msp, you should focus on getting better at it for your own artistic purposes and train your mind never to expect a job, then when you finally find a max/msp job, you might actually be pleasantly surprised(because it is more likely to pay you to do what you’ve gained recognition for creatively-AND-technically as opposed to just technically and, for obvious reasons, this would make it more fun), rather than bored and depressed to find that such a beautiful design-experience could turn into something so mundanely dreary.

Be careful what you ask for, and be clear to yourself about where your heart truly lies: money? contentment? creativity? progress? it’s different for everyone.


October 9, 2012 | 10:16 pm

Hm…

Pardon me, but I don’t really feel that you need a ‘philosophy’ to be a Max user. Max is a tool; no more, no less. As I said before, I personally don’t consider Max as a real programming language, but that’s basically because of my background. At the time when I first met Max, I had already worked for companies for years developing application back-ends in C++, Java or SQL. Compared to those languages, Max is much more an easy way of glueing things together in a very fast and efficient way than a ‘real’ programming language (my own way of using Max is that I program the ‘patch logic’ as a set of externals in C or Java, depending on what I find easier, and then I glue them together in Max). Again, it depends on your needs. As a composer, Max is my no. 1 tool (OK, the only thing that I couldn’t suppress from my toolkit until today is superVP, as the Max version of it is far from being complete). I could also imagine using Max for prototyping, either sound or application logic. But I wouldn’t jump into serious programming tasks with Max, and I feel that that was the original question of the OP.

I would also argue with the statement that Max is basically a tool for education. This is simply not true; my experience with my own classmates was that Max is one of most hard-to-understand tools for average composer students at college. There are other tools that are much easier to understand. I think the most important market for Max are those professionals that work in the so-called ‘audio-visual-art-industry’, whatever that means (composers, DJs, VJs, media artists etc.) and who can’t express themselves by only using mainstream products (like ProTools etc).

If you expect to work as a game developer, Max can come handy when you design your sounds, but I’m pretty sure that nobody will ask you to deliver a Max patch as the core of a computer game’s sound engine. If you want to do professional-level creative work, you probably won’t avoid Max and/or PD. You just need to decide what your dreams are, and choose your appropriate tool for it. And you surely don’t need philosophies to do this. For instance, I’m a convinced capitalist (and proud of it), and I still use Max… (Man, you should really come to live for a couple of years to Eastern Europe and then you would beg for a proper capitalist system…)

My 2 cents,
Ádám


October 9, 2012 | 11:12 pm

>If you expect to work as a game developer, Max can come handy when you design your sounds, but I’m pretty sure that nobody will ask you to
>deliver a Max patch as the core of a computer game’s sound engine.

One of the things that’s been missing so far in this discussion is that everyone seems to assume they somehow know the configuration of in-house systems that various companies provide to their audio designers for the purposes of game development.

I continue to be amazed when I discover just how varied those environments are – often varying widely among working groups within the context of a larger company. Depending on the situation, you may not *know* what specific environments are being used in your job-to-be, and some employers won’t necessarily discuss those matters in detail on a first interview.

In my experience, the prudent course of action is that you should feel free to list any number of programming environments in which you feel you’re fluent rather than letting someone else tell you what is and is not an "appropriate programming environment." The landscape of the current gaming business resembles feature filmmaking more than anything else, and niche ecologies abound (although you’re not necessarily going to know about them when you walk in the door). The line on your resumé will, at the very least, provide an opportunity to describe your expertise in any given area and to construct a narrative in the interview that allows you to tell a better and clearer story about yourself and your talents.

In a world in which job applicants train and present themselves as though a specific language is some kind of one-size-fits-all credential, the ability to speak widely with intelligence and discernment about a variety of approaches may prove to be an intelligent strategy. I expect the mileage of others may vary.


October 10, 2012 | 4:01 am

Max is certainly a ‘real’ programming language, a member of a class of languages known as VPLs (Visual Programming Languages). It’s Turing complete. The Max part models the event-driven programming paradigm and the MSP part is essentially a dataflow language which is why it works very well with audio and signal processing. It’s got lots of the properties considered important in language design, including abstraction, encapsulation and extendibility.

I disagree completely with the notion that it might not be real because it’s just used as glue to call out to externals in C or Java. Many languages work exactly the same way and are very dependent on a runtime library often implemented in a completely different language. People have been doing that kind of "gluing" since the days of Smalltalk if not earlier.

Lots more information at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visual_programming_language. IEEE has sponsored quite a few conferences and journals devoted to VPLs.

————–
Max is much more an easy way of glueing things together in a very fast and efficient way than a ‘real’ programming language (my own way of using Max is that I program the ‘patch logic’ as a set of externals in C or Java, depending on what I find easier, and then I glue them together in Max).


October 10, 2012 | 6:55 am

^hahahahaha, nicolas, this is the best kind of reply :D


October 10, 2012 | 6:50 pm

oh, and i think i understand why people call it a ‘real’ language. i meant more that it is not a ‘real’ object-oriented programming language: anyone who claims that max classes (in the graphical environment alone, not programming externals in C++ or anything like that) achieve inheritance is obviously very easily pleased with any toy-like method of such a concept.

It would also be interesting to hear how staff members such as Gregory have made a living selling their max apps or working at max development(for a living, not just for favors) outside of working for Cycling74(because obviously working for that company doesn’t count and Gregory and the others so far would be guilty of simply offering a biased sales-pitch if they relied on that body of experience alone).

also, ‘glueing things together fast’ is hardly ever efficient(certainly not in Max). i think ‘efficient’ in such a sentence is obviously a very subjective measure(even where time-usage is concerned: western civilizations always mistake fast for efficient, not realizing they are ridiculously poor at achieving greater benefits and ease over the long-term future: Max is the same way in terms of organization). i’m glad to get folks thinking, though ;)

@siska adam
one last thing i want to inquire about specifically from you to make sure i’m clear about what you’re saying, because i respect your words more than most here(others have a shitty way of helping around here, but you don’t just talk a bunch of self-aggrandizing bullshit like most of the community here(including myself ;D). i like your work, it shows that you know what you’re talking about…). but what did you mean by this:
"Pardon me, but I don’t really feel that you need a ‘philosophy’ to be a Max user."? It seems to have come out of nowhere since i don’t recall anyone here saying that a ‘philosophy’ was needed?


October 10, 2012 | 7:27 pm

"western civilizations always mistake fast for efficient" -> seems you haven’t spent a lot of time in "eastern civilizations", at least from China, where I am living now, i get another perspective :-)

From a didactive point of view i consider the MaxMspJitter graphical programming environment as a precious toolkit, that makes computer and technology better understandable. It let you create, control and modify environments without some of the limitations of more customized software. The high-level graphical patching approach is a good compromise between preciseness and user-friendliness. I consider it as an important skill to learn more about the traps, hidden potentials and lost folds of our apparatuses that encompasses us. From here, i would say it is really perfect for artists. If they once really encounter its (or their) limitations, at least they should have a basic understanding where to orientate further…
And artists do make money as well…


October 10, 2012 | 7:50 pm

My previous post mentioned no specific software at all, Raja. I’m sorry if it was less clear than it should have been, but my intention was to point out that instead of trying to think as though some specific piece of software is somehow going to guarantee you a job, it might be useful to develop a broad set of skills, list them, and use that listing as a possible opportunity to demonstrate not only that you can code or patch, but that you have a sense of what things might be appropriate and *why* you’d make a given choice. If you’re applying to work within the corporate culture of any number of large game companies, you may not *know* about all of the tools being used in the firm to do various kinds of work. In such a case, being specific about the general curve of your skills is also a benefit – it may provide an interviewer with an important insight into your abilities outside of the narrow confines of a specific kind of coding or patching. While those skills certainly could include Max, the same would be true in the case of Processing, Supercollider, Isidora, Pd, vvvv or .


October 10, 2012 | 8:16 pm

""western civilizations always mistake fast for efficient" -> seems you haven’t spent a lot of time in "eastern civilizations", at least from China, where I am living now, i get another perspective :-)"

haha, true enough(although some of the current problems in both India and China could be a attributed to ‘western’ influences :p)… still, i go too far with the passion of my cynicism(and it makes me realize, perhaps siska, in saying "need a ‘philosophy’" was referring to me saying Roman and others "HAVE" to be a certain way, which again loses in too much passion(over my insanity) the intent which was to say that some folks have no choice(trying to remain sane over reconciling how they feel about their work in opposition to how an industry ‘values’ it), rather than imply a philosophy… but who knows? maybe Siska wasn’t even addressing my words :p :D < -crazy-face).

@Gregory
"My previous post mentioned no specific software at all, Raja. I’m sorry if it was less clear than it should have been, but my intention was to point out that instead of trying to think as though some specific piece of software is somehow going to guarantee you a job, it might be useful to develop a broad set of skills"

No apologies necessary(ever). I was just being challenging. :D I think I understood what you originally said and agree: it is better to become well-rounded, rather than guess at a possible avenue of specialization. But aside from that(perhaps even off-topic), am curious to hear of how some of you who work at Cycling74, feel about how your work is received in an industry context. From what i’ve seen, everyone there has a different opinion and experience(it would be interesting to hear, beyond how max/msp can be ‘sold’ as ‘useful’, whether some of these outside-industry-contexts reverberate with how you all actually ‘feel’ it is ‘meaningful’….) …but now since you’ve done so, i feel i should also apologize for framing it all in such a facetious way(overall i’m saying exactly what you were saying… but did it with too much passion in trying to get someone new to the industry to really think about what’s in their heart, rather than what needs to be on their resume… so they don’t make the same mistakes i did).


October 11, 2012 | 12:59 pm

This, to me, is the single biggest issue for me in working with Max, and it is not even about sharing. As a matter of course, I use version control just for my own projects so I can get back to earlier versions and the inability to compare different versions of a patcher has bitten me many times. (Comparing the underlying text is useless because stuff often gets stored in different order so the versions look completely different textually).

It would be great to have a tool that one could use with version control systems that would quickly allow different versions of patchers to be viewed graphically.

____________________
Also, have you ever thought about how difficult it is to share a development project of Max/MSP over a versioning system?


October 11, 2012 | 1:51 pm

@dhjdhjdhj
I’m just doing the same as you, and I just want to second everything you said. Although I’ve never tried to do shared development in MaxMSP (it would be fascinating to try BTW), I can imagine that it’s not much fun, specially when you try to merge two working copies which have modifications in the same patch. ;-)

@raja
I was meaning exactly what you also figured out, the ‘have to be a certain way’ things. My opinion (again) is, that I’ve seen too many people who are completely different the one from the other and all of them doing interesting things. Specially in an artistic environment, I would really be careful with statements about how people should think (and specially considering that we’re not even discussing here about artistic beliefs or aesthetics, ‘just’ about a software tool and its market). And also, life is much more complicated than what one could summarize in a couple of statements. Just think about what a ‘western civilization’ (or an ‘eastern’ one) is? If they exist at all in the way you think about them? Personally, my life until now was not long enough even to _really_ learn and know my own hometown (Budapest) and its culture… Honestly, I can completely understand your frustration about your own work not being recognized by the mainstream music industry, as I am (and I guess, most of us on these forums are) in the very same situation. But (at least from my part) this was a decision that I made _before_ jumping into the ‘weird music world’, and I don’t really regret it. Probably the music that I compose wouldn’t sound the same if I would be under the pressure of attracting a lot of audience with it. Demographically, most of the people (at least in Hungary) don’t really know much about music, which means, that if you want to attract a huge crowd, you need to base your work on a very basic musical language which is easy to understand without too much musical training. I don’t want to do that. On the other hand, I don’t blame those people who don’t have the time to learn music on a deeper level. Don’t forget, that if everybody would spend most of their times with music making (or just listening), nobody would make bread for us…

Cheers,
Ádám (which is my first name, according to the ‘Eastern name order’, which is used in Hungary BTW.)


October 11, 2012 | 7:22 pm

1.)
"there is no job market for max", because that is not what max was made for, it was made
for other puposes, and it was made for other purposes because the people who made it
thought it was cool to make it like that.
there is no job market for max, because a straight orientation to "job market" is no longer
cool.
what is so difficult to understand here?

2.)
living a bourgeois life as of today means that you are an almost 100% opponent to the
current capitalist system. please note that beeing a bourgeois among other things for
example does not automatically mean not beeing a humanist. the system does.

3.)
who gives a shit about what the "mainstream music industry" thinks about http://laut8leise.de/_l8l/_music/110.terpen.mp3 ?

do these orcs still exist anyway?

i ask because i dont know. i could escape the achievement-oriented society about 10 years ago, and in between i dont even watch TV.

i am done with the system.

-110

written from my PPC G4.


October 12, 2012 | 2:21 am

edited. see below >:D


October 12, 2012 | 3:11 am

@Siska
"I would really be careful with statements about how people should think"

likewise, i would be really careful, if i were you, to jump to quick conclusions about what people say. The expression, "people have to do [so-and-so] in order to survive" does not imply anything about telling them what to think, it means literally: they, themselves, of their OWN volition, think this way, because their survival (or sanity, as i mentioned before) depends on it. I think maybe it is you, who jumped to a really ignorant conclusion.
also, if you don’t know me, you have no idea that i equate ‘western civilization’ with ‘capitalistic societies’(nor do i need to explain that… until someone actually shows interest enough by asking me to clarify… then i can tell those who would snap to quick judgments apart from those who wouldn’t… it’s my own survival reflex). it’s clear to people from the 3rd world, which current 1st world countries had oppressed them with colonialism prior to that(and many of those places are still recovering), plus which places were exploited by more current corporate practices of those same advantaged areas of the world. and it is just as clear to see that those same 1st world countries are struggling because that same attitude of trying to get something overnight with a minimum of effort on their part, is finally failing them. this recession is definitely what we deserve. until these facts are considered more carefully, even made reparations for, neither I, nor anyone else, need be sensitive about referring to it as ’1st World’, ‘Western Civilization’ or ‘White Trash’….it’s ALL the same to me. nor, for that matter, do i need to pay my condolences or feel bad at all when terrorism runs rampant: insensitivity breeds insensitivity, but it also does help to show the ugliness to those who wish they could hide from it in technological and capitalistic privilege.
on a sidenote: i am also not for peace(in case i sound like i was ever trying to reach anyone with my words about ‘civilization’…i was not. civilization simply doesn’t exist on this earth), i am absolutely for a continuum of violence and peace achieving dominance at different times in order to maintain an overall equilibrium(people do not deserve absolute peace, it makes them too happy-go-lucky and uncaring, not to mention forgetful of history).
all this is just to say: you probably shouldn’t tell me to be careful about anything, if you don’t expect me to come right back with the same to you and point out the hypocrisy of telling me what to think ;)

think of the utterly ridiculous blanket-statements you’ve made as well:
1) there was never any mention of the actual word ‘philosophy’ so it’s as if you tried to place words in my mouth.
2) you explain to me about the place you live in, i’m sorry, that’s your own fault of ignorance that makes you assume i don’t know anything about where you live, but i have been to Budapest, and it was a beautifully budding culturally rich city… you wrote, "Demographically, most of the people (at least in Hungary) don’t really know much about music", here you’ve done the same thing you accuse me of: generalizing. seriously?! ‘don’t really know much about music’?! the tradition of music between Hungary and Austria is ridiculously rich! so maybe they don’t know about YOUR music, but can you blame them when you sound this stuck up? i saw for myself, that they know quite alot about music in Hungary, it just happens to be traditional(which is how it is everywhere with regular people, and it isn’t their fault, people like you and me who generalize and condescend them about their ignorance, end up making our own music ridiculously unappealing by this attitude). if they aren’t aware of more modern music, who’s fault is that? it isn’t theirs at all. It’s YOURS, for not figuring out the right way to lead people despite their filtered eyes to a more holistic view of the light. sure it may seem impossible, but that is still YOUR responsibility to make them see(as the one who has access to more sight), it’s not their responsibility to notice how blind they are(you might as well spank children merely for being children). sorry to go off, but it was just such a generalization, for something which was trying to pose as though it could convince ‘me’ to be more careful about ‘my’ words :p

BTW, i visited the Franz Liszt Academy of Music. Such a beautiful place with so many talented people! WHO WERE YOU TRYING TO BULLSHIT?! (< - that's me being funny, but serious, all at the same time :D)

sorry, but when artists prove to be THIS quick to judge each other without first really getting to know what’s being said, it is actually satisfying to watch everyone struggle. we all deserve to remain unheard and misunderstood. :)

"Everything In It’s Right Place"



Spa
October 12, 2012 | 4:40 pm

Defragment Raja’s text
;)


October 12, 2012 | 6:33 pm

^:D

(or perhaps just be patient and withhold from judgment while Raja defragments his own mid-life crisis :)


October 12, 2012 | 11:35 pm

tokyo rose? tokyo rose???

me want also super-admin priviledges to change my name.


October 13, 2012 | 3:25 am

^haha, i don’t have any special privileges. Click on your name to get to your account page, then there is an ‘edit this information’ link to allow you to change your displayed name(you still have to log in with your original name).

ALLIED FORCES, YOU HAVE LOST! AND YOUR WIVES HAVE FOUND NEW HUSBANDS BEFORE YOUR RETURN! MUAHAHAHAHAHAAAA!!!!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tokyo_Rose


October 13, 2012 | 7:28 pm

At the risk of sounding flippant, make your own market. Every programming language starts somewhere.

PureData is siblings with Max and was used for the sound and music in Spore. Not to mention other people making money with PD, such as the rjdj team.

Other people have mentioned that it is difficult to make non-UI background process with Max which limits its ability to be used as sound engines for games etc. However a handful of people have released Max apps to the Mac App Store. And of course it is used for lighting and other professional purposes.

I find the idea that Max isn’t a programming language is ridiculous. Yes, it is /also/ a "toolbox" but it is still a real, honest-to-god Turing Complete programming language /and/ some people approach it like that, even if many people don’t. Not to mention, GenExpr, JS, Lua, rtMix, ChucK, Java (also JRuby and Jython), and C++ among others can be incorporated into your patches. Just because nearly anything can be done with visual patching doesn’t mean that visual patching is the best way to solve all problems in Max.


October 13, 2012 | 8:09 pm

all your base are belong to mine.

dont spread that metemorphosis trick too much or everyone does it.

one of the things i always liked here is that we use mostly our
realnames to appear on stage.
it gives the max forum game a nice touch of seriousity — and contrast
is not to be underestimated.

-110


October 13, 2012 | 10:25 pm

@Tokyo Rosie:

It’s interesting that you seem to think that inheritance is a prerequisite for a "real" OOL.

I beg to differ and I’ll tell you why: a simple definition of OOL is "a programming language that uses objects; objects are software modules with behavior and state." Inheritance is a development property that allows new object classes to leverage the behavior (and state model) of existing object classes. Many OOLs implement this, but it is definitely not a sine qua non. Although many OOLs support inheritance, there are several others, beside Max/Pd, that do not (for instance, Self). And, as much as it pains me to bring up Visual Basic, there are significant circles where it is considered a valued OOL, despite the lack of inheritance.

Just for the record.

Oh, that Max objects implement behavior and state is, I think, a given.


October 13, 2012 | 11:14 pm

@rjungemann

Sorry, my words were ambiguous (huh… I could spell that word…). Max is in all senses a Turing-complete programming language. I never wanted to question that, although now that I read again my own earlier post, it really made the sensation that I was saying that. What I just wanted to say was, that in my personal ‘palette’ of computer-related stuff, I don’t really use Max as a programming language, but rather as a generic data-routing glue between algorithms written in other languages. I do that because with my personal background/history that turned out to be the most efficient way to go, and I shared this idea here just to add a possible way if interpreting the MaxMSP-feeling ;-) In fact, I find Max by far the best tool to make data routings. However, I would never think of implementing a complex spectral analysis tool only with pure vanilla MaxMSP objects. Of course, it can be done; but for me, personally, that would be a very hard way to go compared to other (again, personally for myself) more easy solutions. But again, that’s more or less a question of taste and personal background. I didn’t want to offend anyone here with my statement, nor wanted to make the impression that MaxMSP is not a 100% real programming language (moreover, as Peter Castine already pointed it out, it is object-oriented, and in some limited ways inheritance is also possible in my opinion).

Regarding embedding, the problem is, that although you can make a Max-based application, you can’t embed it in another software, and this is a limitation, compared to (for example) PD. I ran exactly two weeks ago into a project where they chose PD over Max exactly because of this limitation: the software they developed has (among other layers) a core engine, a GUI and an audio back-end, and for that project it was essential that these layers should be implemented completely independent from each other (so that they could even replace a component if they found out that they had a better software solution for that particular component). This is something that (as far as I know) is impossible to solve with Max (where Max is supposed to be the audio back-end), since you simply can’t tell Max to run as a background process (although I would be very happy to learn that I was wrong and this problem can actually be solved).

Cheers,
Ádám


October 14, 2012 | 4:16 am

Oh, I didn’t realize people would hook onto proving whether it’s a real programming language or not so much(i never thought it wasn’t, just that it’s not on par with the ‘real-world’ object-oriented programming languages… But I’m glad to see proof of how easily distracted we, in this community get. This is a moot point(it’s what all of us in this community are too good at: being contradictory to each other over mere ego, without actually focusing on the subject at hand: which is talking about jobs involving max/msp). What’s really important if you’d like to think of it as a real programming language(i really don’t care, because even if it is a real language, that just goes to prove how ignorant and incapable the majority of this community and cycling74 are for not being able to generate ‘commonly accepted’ respect for it as such in the larger industry or professional world contexts, after 14 years already… unless we are to be happy with the pettiest of gains), no no, what’s most important, for anyone who gets defocused by trying to prove that it’s a real language, is that it’s not open-source and anyone who thinks this is the greatest professional solution is probably pretty amateur and sheltered from the more advanced open-source(and therefore more open-ended) solutions out there.
^THERE YA GO EVERYONE, A NEW POINT OF ARGUMENT TO GET YOUR HIGH-MAINTENANCE, HUMORLESS, DRY MUNDANE, TECHNICALLY BUT NOT CREATIVELY SAVVY, PANTIES IN A WAD OVER! WHEEEEEEEEEEE!!!! Have fun getting sidetracked from your ‘work’ >:D

TL;DR:
Anyone notice how, despite what i’ve said, i’m the only one who posts a real-world example for the beginner to see that it’s possible to find a max/msp job? Do you people actually care about other people? Or only your own words and ego?


October 14, 2012 | 5:00 am

Typically, languages that have objects, support polymorphism but without inheritance are known as "object based" rather than "object oriented". VB was a good example of this.


October 14, 2012 | 5:05 am

^hehehehehe, ….uh huh…. good info…. was kinda funny in its timing, too. well played. :)


October 14, 2012 | 8:42 am

^sounds good and about right to me. cheers. :)


October 14, 2012 | 2:12 pm

I actually do want to apologize for my oddly emphatic response earlier (especially to Siska Adam, I admit I missed his point a little). My point really just was to say "use the right tool for the job" and if that happens to be Max, why not? In the development community many people get hung up on what tools other people are using, and will choose not to use a tool for the mere fact that it’s not the most popular option. As far as I’ve seen (and I might be wrong about this), there are enough similarities between languages and environments that a skilled developer is able to pick up a new language in relatively short time.

The fact that Max isn’t open source is actually an important point, but it didn’t even enter my mind earlier. It’s definitely something to think about.

That’s the last of my two cents, I’ll step back now….


October 14, 2012 | 5:23 pm

I disagree completely with this — I think that many (most) in the Max community are not software developers (nor want to be) and the benefits of a commerically supported product outweigh the dubious benefits of the open model, as the last is really only relevant to those who want to hack code. Most people want to get on with their work and not be distracted.

Frankly, even though I have 35 years of extensive software development experience in more languages than I care to remember, I deliberately picked Max over PD specifically due to the quality of the support, the maturity of the commerical product and the fact that I’m not at the whim of people hacking the code in their spare time who may or may not be available to help.

When I’m in music/art mode, I don’t WANT to be a software developer other than what I’m doing at a high level with Max. It’s a distraction.

____________________
fact that Max isn’t open source is actually an important point


October 14, 2012 | 5:42 pm

you can see how so many might disagree, if you start everything with: "I think that many (most) in the Max community are not software developers (nor want to be)"
that’s purely subjective conjecture(not to say that i, personally, disagree, though… it’s just that you have no way of proving this: the forums are not the only place to find this ‘community’ and even the demographics of the forums keep changing). open-source is important to many future-looking artists and developers(you don’t even have to be a developer to appreciate open-source; there are also many artists who code using open-source languages and never consider themselves developers).


October 14, 2012 | 6:12 pm

@dhj: yeah, I’m aware that some authors distinguish between OB and OO. I don’t, but there’s no point to a drawn-out battle over this. If you insist on the distinction, then, fine, Max is a full-fledged Object Based Language. Either way, it’s still a "real" programming language. pace Rose, honey.


October 14, 2012 | 7:16 pm

Sigh, I’m pretty sure I said "I think", not "I know"….wait, let me go check the thread……yep, definitely I said "I think".

Of course it’s conjecture, but it’s based on both my personal experience interacting with other users, what I see asked (and answered) in various forums, the kinds of patchers I have seen, and various other bits of evidence. For what it’s worth, I’ve made money directly by building Max apps for others who just wanted to practice their art and indirectly by the use of Max in my own environment which has allowed me to contribute to projects which I would otherwise not have been able to do.

I’m not sure what you mean by an "open source" language. The source code for most languages is available but so what? I’m sure that artists (and others) are certainly writing code in some of those languages but I bet very few of them are actually modifying the SOURCE CODE of the language implementation itself. So the fact that the language is itself open source is just not relevant for most people. How often do you think artists here have modified and recompiled Python or Ruby or Java etc?

________
hat’s purely subjective conjecture(not to say that i, personally, disagree, though… it’s just that you have no way of proving this


October 14, 2012 | 7:17 pm

@Peter
Sorry, but as a computer scientist by training and having spent most of my career in the arena of programming language design and implementation, I find such distinctions very important :-)


October 15, 2012 | 7:35 am

"Sigh, I’m pretty sure I said "I think", not "I know"….wait, let me go check the thread……yep, definitely I said "I think".

I’m glad you figured that out for yourself, I subjectively ‘think’ that no one cares what you merely ‘think’ but don’t ‘know’ is all i’m saying(besides, i’ve been watching, subjectively, i’d say your posts here are generally as unfocused as mine, because you like to talk about yourself more than anything else :) …the only difference between your posts and mine, are that i know this truth in advance of posting and like to play with it: you sound like as much of a douchebag as me! :D except you’re actually being serious)

"How often do you think artists here have modified and recompiled Python or Ruby or Java etc?"

How often do you ‘think’ they haven’t? Your generalizations are as valuable as mine. (and we both can’t seem to leave it at that, no matter how off topic we wander… we probably have a similar argumentative disease)


October 15, 2012 | 10:28 am

http://i.imgur.com/7bv6f.gif


October 15, 2012 | 11:36 am

here is a job:

http://cycling74.com/forums/topic.php?id=43028.

0 answers means either there cant be to much people here wanting to earn money with programming or maybe because there is no job forum


October 15, 2012 | 7:55 pm

@setcookie: typically, a poster with a job offer is expecting private responses with cv and documentation of previous experience in Max. So you’re not going to be seeing a lot of responses on the forum.


October 16, 2012 | 8:39 pm

@setcookie
what Peter said. (you’re also in Spain, might be a smaller, different demographic…)

@Peter
"Multi famam conscientiam pauci verentur" -Pliny
ibidem in pace est auditus ;)
(i took latin for 2 years, because they said it would help my SAT scores…. LIARS!)


October 16, 2012 | 8:48 pm

@Tokyo Rose. Is the second phrase Pliny is in his place in peace and listens? Absolutely no clue what the first phrase means.


October 16, 2012 | 9:40 pm

@brendan
first phrase: ‘many fear their reputation, few their conscience’ (< -a good motto for a TokyoRose such as myself)
second phrase: ‘there in peace is hearing/listening’
(which i was most glib in stealing(trying to relate it to a music community) from "ibidem in pace est intelligere" which means ‘there in peace is [to be found] understanding’ and i think there was another vice-versa part of that phrase, but i forget, and even forget who wrote it…)


October 17, 2012 | 7:46 am

"Anyone notice how, despite what i’ve said, i’m the only one who posts a real-world example for the beginner to see that it’s possible to find a max/msp job? Do you people actually care about other people? Or only your own words and ego?"

the main question of the OP was why there are no industry jobs – and it seems that pointing him to one of the rare examples for paid creative work won´t be of much use.

welfare work belongs into the real life (i am about to leave house for it right now) but not in my little maxmsp fantasy world (including the forums).

there is one exception: if somebody suffers from the illusion that he might make a living by coding a bit of lego or playmobile, i feel i should help him the way i did.
want capitalism? can have it: if there would be a fulltime job as max freak in my neighbourhood, i would keep the secret and apply myself.

else, the (ego?) discussion between the others about whether max is a language or not is exactly what i want to read here. go on with it.

110 (lego morpher)


October 17, 2012 | 7:46 am

(L)ego


October 18, 2012 | 12:10 am

"else, the (ego?) discussion between the others about whether max is a language or not is exactly what i want to read here. go on with it."

Max is a programming language: it’s Turing complete :D


January 7, 2014 | 2:31 am

For me understanding of what MaxMSP is and what is a market of its possibilities started from history excursion in Computer Music by Dodge and Jerse book. Here it is stated that Max is Musical Program language. A sort of languages started to develop in Bell labs since 70′s of the XX century as far as I remember. The first example of such language was MUSIC.

I am not a programmer, yet I know basics of C and use MaxMSP for development of my own Compositor software and sound synthesis for techno music tracks.

For me MaxMSP is a tool more like a sketch tool for engineer or designer. You can bring any model to life inspired by any philosophical point of view; unless the sequence or order is defined in need of trigger the things, which is mostly designed for chain like structures. If you will think of proper placement of such models, they will never do a thing alone or without proper implementation. For example, my Compositor model though comprehended and documented in a paper "Compositor – the bottom-up approach" cannot achieve any other thing as of aesthetical implementation of psychological point of view. However, it consists of many useful decisions even though they were not considered so by the Computer Music Journal, where I submitted my paper. The notion that this model cannot produce anything new is very strong in my opinion, as it is the only model, which suggests pure pitch-synchronous analysis of non-harmonic signal, which is FM, is all about. Yet, to find any use for the model inspires me to overcome the boundaries set by the acceptance of society and that is why I do not see any commercial use of MaxMSP in this regard.


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