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Music Production Podcast: Tim Webb creator of discchord.com

AfroDJMac and I had one of the most interesting conversations I've ever had. Fortunately he was recording it! Now you can listen to our pearls of wisdom! The two of us have been doing YouTube for a very long time, and we've exchanged a few emails over the years, but this was our first time talking face-to-face over Skype.

This is quite long at an hour and a half, but there is a lot of great info in here for anyone aspiring to be more productive, and more comfortable with your own music making. I discuss stuff I haven't talked about anywhere else before, so even if you've already heard me talk quite a lot, this will all seem new.

Video Description:

Full post with show notes: https://www.afrodjmac.com/podcast/68-...

Tim Webb has gone to great lengths to bring us the latest and greatest in iOS music making news. His site Discchord.com covers all the latest releases, updates, and relevant YouTube walkthroughs, jams, and reviews of music making software for iPhone and iPad. In a refreshing blast of honesty, Tim is not afraid to tell you what apps suck and are not worth your time. He has been a faithful supporter of developers and app users worldwide for the better part of the last decade.

Tim was kind enough to sit down with me for a in-depth discussion about his work, developing apps, and creating and maintaining a one person business. He offers important lessons on discipline and sincerity that are applicable to all kinds of pursuits. Tim has been extremely supportive of my own work and the work of many creatives who put themselves and their art on the web. It was a pleasure to finally speak with him and learn some important lessons and viewpoints on running a successful music-based business.

Visit my site for more stuff like this, including Live Instrument downloads, tutorials and music! http://www.afrodjmac.com

AfroDJMac
http://www.facebook.com/afrodjmac
http://www.twitter.com/afrodjmac
http://www.afrodjmac.tumblr.com

api_hack.cmd by Tim Webb

Musician, synth guru, and blogger Tim Webb adds iOS Developer to his titles with the release of api_hack.cmd.

While largely known for his Python programming behind the popular website discchord.com, Tim has exceeded his comfort zone to wade into the murky waters of mobile apps. Though you may be expecting a music app from Tim, your expectations will have to wait a bit longer. To first learn the ropes of Swift 4, he needed to set a more feasible goal than jumping straight into synth development.

api_hack.cmd is a developer tool that does nothing on its own, but promises to be capable of, "Literally EVERYTHING!" Tim goes on to explain that the app can interact with Web API calls to servers throughout the world in both GET and POST requests. It will then display the resulting JSON response. In addition to the obvious aid this app will offer in testing API development it can also find a use in every developer's toolbox, if that developer is comfortable creating his own APIs. Think Lemur or MIDI Designer Pro for API calls.

api_hack.cmd iTunes Description:

api_hack.cmd does nothing, but it can do everything. Literally EVERYTHING!

As long as that "everything" we're talking about is controllable via a Web API. It is kind of useless otherwise. So don't buy this unless you have a Web API you want to interact with. Or if you just want a pretty icon on your phone. That is one pretty icon, and easily worth the price of admission, but seriously this app won't do anything for you if you don't have an API you want to hit.

api_hack.cmd is actually helpful for developers who want manual control over tasks that aren't suitable for scheduled automation. With api_hack.cmd you have a button on your phone that can issue custom commands to servers across the world. api_hack.cmd will then display the results of any JSON response.

Home automation enthusiasts will also find value in the ability to send custom instructions to their Home Assistant. Some assembly required, no support offered or implied.

Writing stuff in the third-person is more awkward than I expected. I did a thing! This app will only be useful to about 0.01% of you, but I sincerely hope my demo video for it will entertain some greater percentage than that.

iOS Music & Me Podcast: News Wrap Up with Tim Webb

Chip Boaz invited me to do a news wrap up episode on his iOS Music & You podcast!

We were both on a sugar rush following Halloween and had a lot of fun just chatting about the latest happenings in iOS music making.

There were some Skype problems at the start, with what would seem to be a tap dancing troupe interfering with the recording, but it cleans up a few minutes in. We were both really enjoying the conversation, and I think that comes across in the podcast so it is definitely worth a listen!

Subscribe to iOS Music and You Podcast on iTunes

discchord v3.4: The Reckoning

This week I rolled out another major site update, but you may not have even noticed it. This was primarily a lot of behind the scenes improvements and optimizations. Frankly the site is already so heavily optimized that I doubt anyone besides me notices this stuff anymore. I'm just shaving milliseconds off load times at this point. However this update should be noticeable on mobile networks, because I focused on bandwidth optimization.

The update also added a few "duh, I should have been doing that all along" features. If you're a registered user, the Contact page it will now populate the name and email address with your name and email address.

Timmeon

A few weeks ago Patreon kicked off a couple of Nazis. These are the kinds of guys that wear "deplorable" as a badge of honor, but they are some truly vile dudes. This is a decision I can understand, because I've had to ban a couple of white nationalists here as well. Having Nazis on your site is embarrassing.

Unfortunately this was another instance of Patreon acting without thinking through the obvious repercussions. First the Nazi sympathizers left Patreon in protest. Then people sympathetic to the Nazi sympathizers also left. By the time Nazi sympathizer-sympathizer-sympathizers left, the protest began to take on a much wider demographic to include many Free Speech advocates.

Shit...

This is the second time Patreon have shot themselves in the foot. In both instances I've lost patrons. I'm not going to wait around for a third time, so I've developed an alternative. If you've ended your Patreon patronage for any reason, please consider becoming a Timmeon Patron! Timmeon Patrons get all of the same benefits as Patreon patrons, without any political baggage.

You'll find Timmeon at the bottom of the Support Discchord page, where you can subscribe via Credit Card or PayPal. I'm using payment processor Braintree by PayPal, so everything is very secure and no Credit Card information is ever stored here. Thanks to Pants of Death and Frozen Lonesome for helping me beta test!

The only benefit to using Timmeon instead of Patreon is that the site will immediately recognize you as a Patron. Patreon Patrons have to wait about an hour before the site picks up a new Patreon subscription. That's it. There's no reason to switch from Patreon to Timmeon unless you have a problem with Patreon.

With the loss of commissions from iTunes, my efforts are now entirely funded by the community. If you can help, please do! If you just feel like, "Hey that Tim guy sure works pretty hard. He should get some money for his time!" then please take this opportunity to join the list of site supporters!

One More Thing...

HotRock SupaJoint brought up a point I forgot to mention! If you want to do a one-time donation to the site without worrying about subscriptions, you can! As soon as you sign up as a Timmeon Patron it takes you to your profile page. This is to show you the controls for changing the amount, or canceling the subscription. So if you just want to do a one-time thing you can instantly and easily cancel the subscription! You will continue to enjoy Patron benefits for the next month, even with the subscription cancelled.

discchord 2nd Anniversary!

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...


$1,000


$50 raised of goal $1,000


Flexible Funding:

Seriously, please don't give me any more money than you can or want to!


Not a registered charity:

I've got to pay taxes on this, but you don't get to write it off.


Backing Level:

$5


"I once said I'd buy you a beer."



$10


"I once said I'd buy you a beer."
(Plus shipping from Europe.)



$25


"If ECPM was available as a DVD, I'd gladly pay for it!"



$50


"I don't understand American currency, but $50 doesn't sound like much!"



Prints $20-80



Prints $20-80



Prints $20-80



Prints $20-80


Spoiler Alert: I already bought the camera. You can still help me pay for it, and maybe some new lenses. Think of this as an overly-elaborate joke crossed with a PBS/NPR pledge drive! A lot of you have said, "I'd buy you a beer!" I don't drink that much, so this will work out better.

I can't promise that I'll do more videos with this, but part of my plan here is to study photography to get more serious about my videography. Long gone are the days when a guy talking at a webcam was acceptable YouTube fodder. The live portions of my videos have always been pretty embarrassingly bad. I can say this will be used for at least one video I have planned, which is instructional and music related, but not app related.

Although I am very new to photography, I have been using Photoshop for 15 years. This is helping me turn mediocre results into great shots! I'm having a blast with this and I'm getting even more serious about it as I progress in skill. So serious that I've started my own professional photography business:
PEN1 Studios Photography, PEN1S.com.

I hate people who charge for wallpapers, so you'll always find free 1920x1200 wallpapers of my favorite photos on Google Plus. For the best of the best I'll be selling prints on SmugMug; without the silly watermark. As part of this Timmiegogo campaign I'm making 4 of my favorites available as a limited run. After August these will never be sold again!

Here they are in all their glory. Click on them to get a nice big wallpaper version, and to buy prints use the SmugMug badges on the sidebar. I tweaked down the prices to keep them affordable!

 

Hang In There Baby


Recede


The Speed of Light


Bridge to Nowhere

Stretch Goals:

With every crowd-funding campaign there is a risk that you end up giving the guy too much money and he just runs off with it.

In my case that threshold is surprisingly low!

$16,000

Buchla Series 200e

If by some strange course of events I end up with $16,000, forget all that talk about photography and videos.

In fact you should probably try to avoid giving me this much money. Getting a Buchla would undoubtedly have a negative impact on the site. I'd get so lost in "modular-time" that the site could potentially go days, or even weeks, without any news updates.


Not even remotely affiliated with Indiegogo.

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