Eowave has introduced another product in their line of sensor to MIDI interfaces called the Eobody2 HF, a wireless sensor to USB MIDI device. Building on the user-friendly and rock solid USB MIDI technology used in other recent Eobody boards, the HF allows you to place interactive sensor electronics on dancers, small objects, or anything else where cables would get in the way. Now that we have some of these in stock at the Cycling '74 office, I sat down to give them a thorough run-through to see how it all works.
So far we have talked about how Max for Live will allow you to create your own custom Max devices that run inside of Ableton Live. Most of the examples you've seen so far have been pretty similar to your average plugin, with the fundamental difference of being to edit the device in place. That in itself is pretty spectacular, and probably enough to please a lot of people and keep everyone busy. Well now I'd like to talk about a couple of features that really make Max for Live unique and pretty exciting: namely, the Live API objects.
I will try to summarize here what I thought were some of the highlights of NIME 2009...
I'd like to share some really simple things that have worked for me that I hope you'll find useful, or that may provide a starting point for your own investigations.
Keith McMillen Instruments recently impressed all of us at NAMM with demonstrations of a new pair of string performance devices, the K-Bow and StringPort, both of which include some very rich software applications written in MaxMSP. The K-Bow, a bluetooth-based wireless gestural controller integrated into a violin bow, has just started shipping so we thought it would be a good time to catch up with Keith and find out more about the project. I met Keith at his studio...
In this, the final episode of our guitar processing extravaganza, we are going to step away from making effects and focus on performance support. For a system as complicated as this, performance support means two things: patch storage and realtime control. Thus, we will learn to create a preset system and manipulate the various on-screen controls with an inexpensive MIDI footpedal system.
This week the new Eowave OEM USB boards arrived at Cycling '74 HQ, and I was all too happy to give it a test drive. After having read the impressive spec sheets I was eager to see if the performance of the board lived up to all the promise. I quickly set to work putting it through its paces.
Now that I've got a nice generative patch and a way to hear it, I thought it'd be nice to make a few improvements and extensions that would let me begin to specify larger structures - to generate instructions to my generative patch, as it were. While I'm sure that the world is full of people who want ways to have the same thing happen again and again, I'd like to do this in ways that offer a little more freedom than that. This short tutorial will add a modest number of these kinds of changes.
Last time out, we created the LFOur, a generative patch composed of a quartet of synchronized LFOs whose output we can use to make noise. While it's interesting to watch how the different LFO configurations make combinatoric waveforms and it's restful and instructive to watch the sliders flick and rock, it would be nice to have something to connect it to. This tutorial includes some patches that will do just that.
It's great to see the way that Max/MSP crosses musical genres and also allows people to repurpose available (and maybe not so available) technology. Owen Grace has a band called The Guitar Zeros. He took the guitar controllers used for the Guitar Hero video games and wrote a Max/MSP patch interface that allows him utilize them as an expressive and innovative, stand alone instrument. The Guitar Zeros band currently has four players, a guitar controller player, a bass controller player, a 'real' drummer and a vocalist.
I'm personally a lot more interested in the ability to synchronize processes in Max using time values that resemble musical note values to create control structures that can be easily time synced. This tutorial is about making one of those kinds of modules - a quartet of synchronized LFOs whose outputs I can sample individually for several kinds of data (triggers for waveform start, LFO outputs that I can sample at variably synchronized rates, and a nifty summed waveform I can use for more exotic kinds of control).
This year, we decided to set up shop at the 3rd annual Bay Area Maker Faire in San Mateo, CA. Last year, Cycling '74 shared a little corner of a booth with the nice people at MakingThings, and that was enough to get us hooked on this crazy annual celebration of all things DIY and electrified.
Brian Crabtree (who performs under the name tehn) and his partner Kelli Cain are collectively known as monome. They design what they call adaptable, minimalist interfaces. The musical instrument industry calls them alternate controllers. There are currently three models that interface with a computer. There is no hard-wired functionality; interaction between the keys and lights is determined by the application (such as Max/MSP) running on the computer. Basically the monome units can do whatever you program them to do and serve as alternate controllers for not just music but games, lights, video etc. Monome is fantastically successful. I found their story inspiring and exciting -- they represent a new breed of creative entrepreneurs who are environmentally and socially conscious.
As a guitarist, I was looking for a simple hands-free controller for Max. Rather than buy an expensive pedalboard and MIDI interface, I decided to build a simple USB footswitch. It’s ridiculously easy to make and costs less than fifty bucks. Here is what you will need to do...
I spent hours and hours agonizing over an introduction to this interview. Everything I wrote sucked and realized that I have to let him speak for himself. I think Leafcutter John is brilliant. I love his music which I have been listening to over and over. It is extraordinary, and I'm enthralled with his Max patches, which are amazing artworks in themselves. We had a series of wonderful and fun conversations over a series of weeks...
In this article, Darwin Grosse explains how to use the Wii video-game controller to interface with Max/MSP.
Bert Schiettecatte is the founder of Percussa, a music hardware and software company located near Leuven, Belguim. The company's first product is Audio Cubes, a beautiful and unusual controller system that can be used in powerful ways in conjunction with Max/MSP and other software. Read more about Audio Cubes in this article.
I first became aware of Luke DuBois when I heard his band’s CD Freight Elevator Quartet. Later, we met when he did custom MSP programming for the filmmaker Toni Dove. I was intrigued by the contrast of his knowledge and experience vs. his boyish demeanor. Luke DuBois might look like a college student but that impression changes the minute he opens his mouth. He is a Fellow at the Computer Music Center at Columbia University in New York City and teaches at NYU. Luke is an expert with Max/MSP/Jitter and the intersection of music and image interaction.
In the previous installments, I've tried to give you a quick hands-on feel for how radiaL operates, paying particular attention to how you can develop a feel for radiaL's nonlinear playback modes by listening. But I think that the place where radiaL really shines as an instrument rather than enjoyable way to do multi-channel loop manipulation involves the addition of an interface -- connecting radiaL to an external controller in a way that turns your favorite parameter changes into physical/gestural activities. In this article, Gregory Taylor will describe how to accomplish this.
Max is all about making connections. The Making Connections series of tutorials will introduce you to new connections you can make between MaxMSP and the outside world. This tutorial, the first in the series, will discuss the use of HID devices such as USB game controllers as gestural interfaces for your Max patches.
In this interview, Tim Place speaks about his work as a developer and artist, charting the numerous development projects which pooled together to create Hipno.
When a new shipment of Lemurs arrive from France, the excitement begins to grow at c74 headquarters. But it's not what you think. Yes, we are happy to receive a new shipment because it means people like the Lemur and are buying it. And, yes, it's always good to see that the big box of expensive hardware you just purchased arrived safely. Despite these good reasons, which occasionally lead to hugging the delivery driver, the best part is the BIG BOX.