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Cue handling in Max

2004-08-12

I’m helping out writing application for grants 2005-2006 for Verdensteatret at the moment. Right now I’m concerned about ways of scripting and event handling in Max/MSP/Jitter/SoftVNS. Over the last year we’ve spent quite some time on these issues checking out Jade Mirage the qlist object that’s now a part of the Max 4.500 distro and the new patcher attributes features of Max 4.5. In my view Jade (that is the v.2 betas) are the one that is the closest to a convinsing solution but it would be preferable to be able to use the system inside Max instead of having to patch modules in Max and then import into Jade.

Straight out of the box the Max patcher attribute regime (made up of the objects pattr autopattr pattrhub and pattrstorage) are missing some important features of Jade:

At current patcher attributes seems to work the best if you are developing the art work in a very structured and linear way: First making the patches required and then setting the cues required one by one from the beginning to the end of the piece. That’s not exactly the way Verdensteatret work sessions go. Patches are changed and modified on an ongoing bases all the way through the process and they are not based on connecting simple and standard modules for sound or video FX processing in a sequence. The sequence of events might change drastically from one day to the next. Even though a progression of events will have been settled for each public performance the sequence of events might change up til the last minute and from one day to the next.

qlist is out of the question. It’s depending on a similar syntax to coll requiring semicolons at the end of each line. If you forget kabong: everything from there on in the text file is lost. I guess the reason why qlist was included in Max 4.500 is that it has been used by a lot of composers for a long time and already was maintained by Dudas but it would have made more sence to create a fifth object for the pattr regime offering text edit abilities in similar ways to Jade.

I haven’t spent to much time checkin out Mirage so far but it seems to be limited to SoftVNS only (no Jitter or MSP) and thus can not provide a sufficient solutions for all parts of what we’re doing. The documentation coming with the download isn’t very thorough but there’s more available online although most of it is in French at the moment.

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