discchord v3.1: Preset Sharing... Now with more downloading!

I thought the preset uploading was going to be the hard part, but actually downloading the presets presented some challenges that I was unprepared for! Safari and Chrome on iOS simply would not download preset files, instead displaying them like text files. This is a somewhat understandable security precaution, Apple don't want you downloading random nonsense on iOS, but it's a bit overzealous and annoying for our purposes!

The Dilemma

If you haven't been following the discussion of this problem in the comments section, there were a couple of workarounds. The easiest (for me) was for people to simply use different browsers. Puffin lets you "Download to Dropbox" where you can then "Open In..." the files with their appropriate app. iCab Mobile doesn't give a fuck and will let you download anything you want. Both of these solutions require the use of paid apps though, and I didn't want to force everyone to do that. Also, if you like your browser I don't want you to have to switch just to use discchord.

These are mobile presets, so you should be able to easily download them on your mobile device! One workaround on my end would be to either require, or force, all uploads to be .zipped. You could then open the zipped file in AudioShare, and then import presets from there. This was a pretty good idea, because I'm sure 90% of you already have AudioShare, and the other 10% of you probably should. But... I still didn't like the idea of forcing you to pay for an app to use the presets here.

This is where I'm really glad I spent most of 2016 writing discchord v3 from the ground up. Not only can I add site-specific features like preset sharing, I can write entirely new code libraries to make them work. So I did!

Dropbox Mirroring

Now whenever someone uploads a preset to the site, my code will immediately mirror it to Dropbox. So the file exists both here on the discchord server cluster as well as inside of Dropbox's cloud. When you press the Download Preset button, one of two things happens. If you're coming to the site on anything other than an iOS device you will download the file as normal. This will also happen if you spoof your OS user-agent, so if you're an iCab Mobile Power User and just want raw downloads you can do that. But if you are on your iOS device; instead of downloading the file you will be redirected to a Shared Download Link on Dropbox.

Now the only app you need to have installed on your iOS device is Dropbox! And Dropbox is free!

You'll notice I've also tweaked the way iTunes links are displayed. Now you can see an app's Discchord Reader Rating, Comments on the AppDB, as well as a number showing how many presets have been uploaded for it. Dropbox is kind of a poor example of that, so here are the ones with presets available now. Clicking on the preset number, or icon, will take you directly to the presets page for that app.

Let's Play with MV08

There are a lot of great drum apps on iOS, including many specifically catering to the TR-808 sound. MV08 caught my eye because it includes parameter locks! These let you modify sounds on a per-step basis. You can make individual steps do some weird things, or modify the pitch on subsequent steps to create a melody. I do a little bit of both while struggling with technical challenges from the app hating my recording software.

Video Description:

MV08 is a new drum machine app based on the TR-808 that distinguishes itself by including parameter locks! There were a lot of difficulties in recording this, as it did not get along with my recording software, but fortunately the footage is smooth! My birthday is in August, and I would like corals for my birthday. If you've enjoyed this series please consider making a gift by becoming a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com

If you'd prefer to make a one-time gift, I would make great use of gift cards this coral shop ( my email tim@ the most obvious domain name that comes to mind ): http://uniquecorals.com/gift-card-nam...

discchord 6th Anniversary

This weekend discchord turns 6, but perhaps even more importantly I turn 38. This is usually the time of year I combine our birthdays for an annual fundraiser/gimmie presets... which I will continue to do, but this year I've got a present for you!

Preset Sharing

You didn't ask for it, and you got it! I've spent the last several months working hard to bring you a feature that I think will be extremely useful to the community. You can now upload presets to the site! These presets can include custom artwork, and demos from either SoundCloud or YouTube. The goal here is to make sharing presets as easy as possible, and I sincerely hope I have accomplished that.

There are a hell of a lot of security concerns involved in letting people upload files to the site. I spent a lot of time trying to make sure people couldn't hack the site, but preventing people from using the service to upload malicious content is even harder. There are just too many different types of presets, so I can't check them all. To weed out miscreants I've limited uploading to just Patrons, developers, and active members of the community that have been here for a while.

If you have had an account here for longer than 6 months, and you've been actively commenting, your account is now automatically enabled for uploading! If you didn't make the cutoff don't worry! The system will continue to enable uploading for people who have been on the site for a year and are actively commenting. If you still can't make that cutoff, and don't want to be a Patron, you can email me and I'll consider you on a case-by-case basis. Now for someone to upload something they shouldn't, they would have to spend an extremely long amount of time to do so.

Right now there is only one preset up there, so I hope there will be a lot more by the end of the weekend! To see if you are an authorized uploader hit this link. If you don't see a message saying you can't upload, then you can!

Now Back to the Important Stuff

As I continue to age disgracefully, I keep trying new and interesting hobbies to avoid golf... or worse, model trains. This year I'm getting into reef keeping. This is the challenging end of the aquarium hobby, which combines fickle saltwater fish and even-more-fickle corals.

There's so much to learn! The hobby demands constant water quality tests to maintain a delicate balance of water chemistry. I'm only one month in and have already had to deal with some serious issues in that regard, but I'm loving it! The challenge is extremely engaging!

So this year, as every year, I ask that if you enjoy the site please become a Patron! (Per Video or Per Month) You get an ad free experience on the site, automatic upload approval, and the knowledge that you are helping me directly! If you aren't comfortable with Patreon, please consider sending me a one time gift such as a gift certificate to Unique Corals (my email address is tim@the most obvious domain name that comes to mind), or PayPal me to help me pay for fish! If I've helped you enjoy the music making hobby, please help me enjoy the reef keeping hobby!

I'm documenting my experience as a novice reefer in a series called Proteus Reef on YouTube. This is a monthly episodic journal of what I've learned and how I deal with challenges along the way. The first episode if up right now, and another will be posted to YouTube at the end of the month. I'm not going to be posting any more of them here, because I can appreciate that most people won't give a fuck about my fish.

Let's Play with Ripplemaker

I had a recent epiphany that is relevant to this video. I like making weird noises. This is probably not news to anyone who has watched most of my videos, but I think I understand why I like making weird noises so much. Weird noises are new noises! I've been playing with synths off-and-on since the late 90's, and continuously since the late 00's. I've synthesized a lot of sounds, so for some quick new sounds to engage my ears I go into the weird. It's good to know that because I can catch myself before I go too far off into the deep end.

Ripplemaker is a high dive into the deep end, but I managed to avoid being too annoying in this Let's Play!

Video Description:

Bram Bos brings us another music app innovation with the semi-modular Ripplemaker. The app is designed for West Coast synthesis, and in this video I go so far West you can smell the salt spray on Fisherman's Warf. Speaking of salt spray... My birthday is in August, and would like corals for my birthday! If you've enjoyed this series please consider making a gift by becoming a Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com

If you'd prefer to make a one-time gift, I would make great use of gift cards from either of these coral shops ( my email is in the video @ 23:08 ): http://uniquecorals.com/gift-card-nam... OR https://worldwidecorals.com/giftcard....

Let's Play with Unique

Unique lives up to its name! Sugar Byte's latest synth produces some amazing sounds with an interface that is fairly easy-to-use. I am loving the sounds I get out of it while exploring it in this week's Let's Play!

Video Description:

Sugar Bytes has been bringing us some very big apps on iOS and Unique is no exception. I know that sounds like a B.S. marketing blurb, but I legit found myself saying "Holy shit!" quite a lot while playing with it. If you enjoyed this please consider supporting this series by sponsoring them on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/discchord If you'd prefer to help on a monthly basis, instead of per video, there is a new monthly Patreon campaign: https://www.patreon.com/discchord_com

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