Following the release of Modular yesterday, I present Part 2 of my Modular tutorials. This time I get a bit more advanced and explore how modules, and the signals they generate, can be modified for use in different ways.
In a move that surprised no one, yesterday Apple announced the new iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5Cheap. More, faster, smaller, yadda, yadda... They didn't announce the next generation of iPads! Just a fucking plastic phone! Oh excuse me, a fucking "unapologeticly plastic" phone.
One bit of interesting news did surface yesterday, with the iPhone 5S running 64-bit processors. This appears to be a play for future development, rather than a specific performance improvement in this generation. Developers Sebastian Dittmann and Rolf Wöhrmann were available on Skype to help me make sense of what this will mean in practical terms.
"The only real benefit of 64-bit is that it is able to address more RAM. The only reason to do that is if you have more than 3 gigabytes of RAM. Since none of the new devices have more than 3 gigabytes of RAM; there is no benefit here.
If apps are optimized for 64-bit, then they can potentially be faster or more efficient because they can basically use bigger numbers. But unless apps are optimized for that, there is no benefit."- Sebastian Dittmann, Co-Founder Audiobus
Rolf was more optimistic, but only slightly when ask about the challenges developers will have to face in order to do that.
"I understand 32-bit apps will run without recompiling on the new CPU. Just recompiling the code for 64-bit doesn't get at the real power from the CPU. You have to rethink some part of your processing kernel, to unleash the 64-bit power. The effort required is dependent on whether your current code is already thought out with these specific features in mind. For some it will be a whole rewrite, or simply not possible, for others it will be quite easy."Rolf Wöhrmann, Tempo Rubato
So by the time we get to the iPhone 6 we should have a batch of 64-bit apps that will be able to fully take advantage of a projected 4 gigabytes of RAM, but for iPhone 5S owners the extra bits may go largely unnoticed.
Additionally Apple has announced that iOS 7 is coming out next Wednesday. If you use your iDevices in any sort of serious music production capacity I would like to remind you that you should really hold off on updating immediately. You wouldn't jump up to the latest OSX on your production Mac, so don't automatically update your iPad!
Finally in an effort to address the rampant iPhone theft in America, Apple announced plans to minimize the impact of this statistic by inflating the incidents of thumb theft.
I'm extremely excited about Pulse Code's new app Modular, coming out on the 12th next week. I've had a chance to play with it for a while now and have been thoroughly impressed. You get a ton of good stuff in the free package before you even spend a dime, so I thought this would be a good app to teach the concepts of modular synthesis! This is Part 1, which uses only the free modules. Part 2 gets a bit deeper using premium modules.
In a rare turn of events, this "Apple Kills X" headline is somewhat accurate! The music app world hasn't seen declarations of Apple killing an app in a while, but iOS 7 looks to be offering plenty of new opportunities to dust off the old murderous title.
Reader Will brought my attention to a post over on the Loopy forum from Loopy and Audiobus developer Michael Tyson stating, "Sonoma's AudioCopy will no longer work on iOS 7."
I contacted Michael for comment and he directed me to this published beta document revealing the sad truth.
iOS 7 Beta 3 Changelog - UIKit Notes:
+[UIPasteboard pasteboardWithName:create:] and +[UIPasteboard pasteboardWithUniqueName] now unique the given name to allow only those apps in the same application group to access the pasteboard. If the developer attempts to create a pasteboard with a name that already exists and they are not part of the same app suite, they will get their own unique and private pasteboard. Note that this does not affect the system provided pasteboards, general, and find.
Michael got into the details for me, and explained the situation as it stands today.
"What it means is that all pasteboards except the general one are now sandboxed, and are private to the app that created them.
Sonoma's ACP uses a custom pasteboard – not the general pasteboard, for which this limitation doesn't apply – which means that the ACP pasteboard is now sandboxed to each "application group"; I'd say this means that apps have to have a common ID prefix to access each others' custom pasteboards. So if you use it to copy audio, you won't see the copied clip in any other app.
Copying audio to the general pasteboard still works, though, but of course it means you can only ever copy one clip at a time, without the 11-clip history that ACP provides.
General pasteboard still works fine. Apps that use it will continue to be able to copy audio. The most recent version of Sonoma's ACP SDK uses the general pasteboard in addition to the named one, so that will work (but the 11 clip history won't)."- Michael Tyson, A Tasty Pixel/Audiobus
My emails to Sonoma have gone unanswered, but yesterday they issued the following statement to AudioCopy/Paste developers.
Dear MAPI partners,
Good news for those of you who implement AudioCopy and/or AudioPaste in your apps. Retronyms, Sonoma's long time partner, are taking on development of the AudioCopy and AudioPaste SDK. Look for an updated ACP SDK with iOS 7 support, license agreement, and more information from Retronyms soon. You may contact Retronyms with questions.- Michelle Wright & The Sonoma Team
I had quite a lot of questions, so I called up Retronyms co-founder Dan Walton to ask them! We talked about the importance of the ACP history in the workflow of power-users, which they seem to fully understand and appreciate. I couldn't get them on record about what exactly they have up their sleeves, but they do plan to make an announcement soon. In the meantime this is all they can tell us to ease any fears:
"We are aware of iOS7 issues with AudioCopy and it's history menu. Our team has been hard at work to fix these issues and improve AudioCopy in general. Any day now we will release a new AudioCopy SDK that is compatible with iOS7. This update will have an improved history feature and many other improvements for developers and musicians.
We are extremely excited about this and know that AudioCopy is very important to musicians. We are asking for the support of the user community and the developer community as we make this transition over the next few weeks."- Dan Walton, Co-Founder Retronyms
It is hard to nail down exactly when to celebrate the anniversary of my involvement in the community. My first iMS-20 video was in April 2011, the first ECPM lesson was in July, the site was registered in August, and I started covering the daily news in March 2012. Since the site's technical birthday is August, and my own birthday is in August, I figure that's a good time to celebrate!
Now that the site is turning 2, it's time to start dispensing the gifts! For the 1st anniversary of ECPM I gave out $250 worth of promo-codes, how can I possibly top that? A troubling question I wrestled with for quite some time before pondering a further one:
Wait, why the hell am I giving you guys gifts for my birthday?
We've been doing this backwards!
Now that I'm turning 34, it's time to start settling into my mid-thirties. In Suburbia USA that means I need to take up golf and/or photography. I'm terrible at golf, but good at seeing things so this was an easy choice! I've actually been meaning to get into photography for a really long time, so I'm committing to it now.
With that in mind, I'm opening up this opportunity for you to collectively buy me a nice camera. I've resisted previous suggestions that I accept donations; on the basis that I would be the most unworthy charity. Since this is a birthday present we're talking about here, that's different...
Not even remotely affiliated with Indiegogo.