Fuck Tangible Instruments

Wannabe manufacturer Tangible Instruments posted this demonstration from NAMM of their elusive Arpeggiator. Originally funded on Kickstarter back in 2015, they expected to ship their cute arpeggiator instrument out to backers in April of 2016. They failed to do so.

In fact, they have failed to deliver at all in the nearly 5 years since the Kickstarter campaign started.

At what point does a campaign get flagged as fraudulent? You can see a lot of frustration from backers on Kickstarter, yet somehow Kickstarter is content with their users being bilked like this? This is an important cautionary tale. I don't want to be liable for libel, so I've got to be careful here. But if you ask for my money in exchange for something and fail to deliver on that for nearly 5 fucking years, wouldn't you call that a scam?

I'm extra mad at these guys because they personally scammed me. Back in 2017 they released a shit app without any kind of MIDI or Audio connectivity. Ordinarily I wouldn't have posted it, but the guy emailed me saying he was one of of the guys from Tangible Instruments, and promised that Audiobus and MIDI were on the way. The app has never received a single update since its release. These are con artists, not developers.

Video Description:

Shot live at NAMM 2020, this video demonstrates features of arpeggiator mode and MIDI connectivity including MIDI over Bluetooth LE.

more info:

discchord v3.5: Seek and Ye Shall Find!

This is an update that I've been putting off for ages because I knew it would suck to code it. I was right.

Fortunately the results are super useful. This finally addresses the awful search that has been on the site since day 1. It is fantastic now! This includes both article search and app search! Now if you search for Audiobus the first result is Audiobus, and not any of the 838 other apps in the site's database that mentions Audiobus.

What's new in discchord v3.5:

+ New Search! Better, slower, way way more accurate and helpful!
- Fixed Android! Updated scraping to latest Google changes, and made some tweaks to database.
- Fixed # at the end of App Store links, so that the # doesn't end up in the database.
- Fixed YouTube links to other @channels
- Fixed Exploit in Search that exposed Patron Only Posts (Thanks Cosmo for letting me know!)
- Fixed anti-cheat in contests to avoid false positives. Sorry!

Brought to You By Medicinal Amphetamines

This long awaited update would not be possible without the aid of amphetamines! Under medical supervision I've been experimenting with Vyvanse to treat my, now extremely problematic, ADHD. Things started off rough. I've now found a dosage that works for me! I'm finally able to tackle problems that before seemed too boring, or dangerous. Addressing search here was a bit of both.

Search is Hard

I've known the search here sucked. I was relatively new to Python in early 2016 when I wrote it. Surfacing relevant search results is tricky and I just didn't know how to do it back then. I've known how to do it right for a while now, but search is kind of woven into the code all over the place and I knew it'd be a long and boring process to retrofit a better search. The code base for discchord is huge now, and it is a little dangerous for me to go poking around at fundamental portions of it. I was able to face both of these problems with patience!

I'm quite proud of the new search and hope it will be much more useful to you.

Android is Shit

Regular readers here will know that I hate Apple. In fact I strongly resisted buying an iPad because I was waiting for Android tablets to get their shit together. When Korg released iMS-20 I caved and bought an iPad 2. I'm glad I did or I'd still be waiting for Android to get its shit together. Despite my hopes, Android has not become a relevant platform for music makers. So I find it particularly galling when Google keeps fucking with the web scraping I use to include Android apps in the site's database.

I was pretty close to throwing in the towel after the last attempt to block me. I've updated the scraping again to bring Android support back in-line with iOS in the Music App Guide. This may be the last time I do so unless I hear from a lot of Android fans that actually care.

discchord is becoming self-aware!

I split the roll-out of this update into two stages, so that if something went wrong I would know where to begin bug hunting. I was keeping Twitter apprised of the situation and soliciting feedback on any bugs. After the Stage 2 post this morning, Audio Damage developer Chris Randall made a very prescient tweet.

There were also a lot of changes in the backend. They're not mentioned in these update notes because that would just be a wall of [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] in the [REDACTED]. One of these is a very early stage Machine Learning project I'm experimenting with on the site. I go through hundreds of YouTube videos every day, and I'm trying to train an AI model to help me do that. It isn't actually doing anything right now, but yes, Stage 3 is world domination.

User Suggestions

The last time I asked for user suggestions there was one idea that almost made it into v3.5.

Set Pagination in reverse so that people viewing page "995" always go back to the same page when they refresh. (Markus Gräser)

I like this idea a lot, but I want to get your feedback. I can see how this would be useful, but I'm worried that this is going to break something that I'm not thinking about. I use the site differently than you, so I'd like to hear what your thoughts are! If you have any other suggestions this is probably a place to post them.

And as always, please report bugs! Do not assume that I know about it. As far as I know the site is amazing and nothing is wrong. I can't fix problems unless you let me know about them.

Let's Play with Continua

I was immediately hooked by hype for Continua, and now that I've had a chance to play with it I'm in love with it! You get all the basic elements of synthesis, but the added morphing modulations make this a lot of fun!

Video Description:

Continua is the latest app from Audio Damage! This synth lets you morph the wave shapes in wild, but predictable and manageable, ways. Continua is available on macOS, Windows, and I'm exploring the iPad version in this video.

If you've enjoyed this series please consider supporting it 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 Or you can support me on Timmeon if you don't like Patreon: https://discchord.com/supporters#timmeon (Patrons of these campaigns get the same benefits, including Ad Free viewing on the site!)

New Year's Predictions 2020

I leave 2019 feeling pretty good about it. 2019 was a good year for me and I think we saw a lot of great new apps arrive throughout the year! I'm even more optimistic about 2020.

We are now deep into the 21st Century and I expect to see more people start to act like it. Our technology has advanced in leaps and bounds, but I think it is taking people a little longer to catch up. We've seen 90's and 80's nostalgia a lot in the last decade, and I'm hoping this next decade will see more originality. Or at least I sincerely hope we don't get 00's nostalgia with people dressing like Justin Timberlake at parties.

Before we look into the future to predict what 2020 holds, let's look back at our predictions for 2019.

Successful Predictions

Reader pineal wave got a twofer with his prediction that we'd seen new AUv3s from FabFilter, and that Korg would finally begin to embrace AUv3. It looked like he was only going to get half of that, but Korg updated Electribe Wave with AUv3 support in November!

Grammatonfeather and flamp successfully predicted that Samplr wouldn't get an update. It remains as it has since December 2014. It is easily the most-used abandoned-app. I see it in new YouTube videos weekly.

Laarz took a shot in the dark that I'd become tolerant to spam bots and adopt a progressive stance on the rights of Artificial Intelligence. He was surprisingly correct. The spam bots still get killed with extreme prejudice, but this year I went full technocrat. I've long believed that democracy had obsolesced in the last century, but in 2019 I became an AI Supremacist. Throughout history we've seen humanity fail to protect the rights of the disenfranchised. AI is already doing a better job of detecting cancer than Radiologists, so we will increasingly rely on AI to do the important work that we cannot depend on humans to get right. I think we can all agree that government is one of those areas that humans rarely, if ever, get right.

Failed Predictions

There were a bunch of you that were predicting that NanoStudio 2 would get Audio Tracks in 2019. Grammatonfeather was the only one to hedge against this.

Erik had high hopes for Apple and Roland to both take music making on iOS more seriously. Sadly they both failed to bring us Logix Pro X, or an official Roland TB-303 app.

BDBaker expected iOS 13 to "completely fuck up all audio apps that are now working on iOS 12" which was mercifully not the case. He picks up a double-fail here with his prediction that we'd get the elusive Loopy Pro in 2019.

Jack Frosto and Red Sky Lullably both thought Propellerheads might do something useful with Reason Compact, but it has mostly been a disappointment. Their latest update in October only changed their branding to reflect their new name, "Reason Studios". It hasn't been abandoned, but no one would look at this app and tell you that this is the Reason for iPad they wanted.

The biggest fail of all was my own prediction that Android would see any increasing relevance to music makers. I'm throwing in the towel on this perennial prediction. Just last week one of the die-hard Apple-haters I know finally dipped his toes into the iOS ecosystem after years of disappointment from Android.

What's Coming in 2019?

It is hard to make predictions when you're content and just want more of the same. Now that I've spent some time really thinking about it, I'm quite happy with the pace of apps we've seen in 2019. I hope that continues!

I expect to see Apple continue to waste more time and resources convincing people they should want watches, after decades of not even wearing watches, instead of doing a damn thing for the creative community. Eh, that doesn't really count as a prediction. That's a certainty. Let me look at my 2020 Crystal Ball. Okay I got one! Now that Behringer cloned all of the classic synths they'll turn their eyes to iOS, where they'll start cloning apps.

Open Mic: New Year's Predictions for 2020!

In the comments here please share your wildest predictions for what we'll see in 2020!

Let's Play with Playset

Fingerlab's new Playset, which became available for pre-order earlier this month, officially releases today!

Let's Play with this new groovebox!

Video Description:

DM1 developer Fingerlab has released a new groovebox called Playset!

If you've enjoyed this series please consider supporting it 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 Or you can support me on Timmeon if you don't like Patreon: https://discchord.com/supporters#timmeon (Patrons of these campaigns get the same benefits, including Ad Free viewing on the site!)

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