Re: [ecasound] Re: [alsa-devel] Re: Usage of Sourceforge (fwd)

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Subject: Re: [ecasound] Re: [alsa-devel] Re: Usage of Sourceforge (fwd)
From: S. Massy (
Date: Tue Sep 05 2000 - 23:03:15 EEST

On Tue, 05 Sep 2000, Kai Vehmanen wrote:

> Here's something I wrote to alsa-devel and lad... Might be of interest.
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> On Tue, 5 Sep 2000 wrote:
> > To be honest, Linux is not quite ready to draw the masses of home musicians
> > away from other OS's but we are very close to that day. (see my other posts re
> While you've raised some good points here (+ in your previous messages to
> alsa-devel), you should note that for people that don't expect Win/Mac
> like polished interfaces, and who don't need to work in a mixed

I would like to raise another point, although it touches a much
narrower array of people. Linux, in many aspects of which sound
processing is part, has made manipulation of data much easier for the
people whose abilities are limited rather than enhanced by a GUI. I am
completely blind and, until I stumbled on ecasound, doing multi-track
recording and sound processing was a pain in the neck, if not
impossible at all. Even in linux I had much difficulties finding a
command-line driven app, I believe ecasound to be the only as of
today, that would let me do most of what I wanted. The only other OS
available with a non-obtrusive interface would be DOS and I doubt it
could offer me anything interesting. I admit this is not a point of
great importance since people disadvantaged by the use of a GUI are an
extremely tiny minority, but they exist and I thought it would be
important to make that point out; especially as a call to developers
folks to not forget the command-line world as they go in a frenzy of
GUI-izing (Nice verb, heh?).

S. Massy

> environment (sync issues), Linux has been a viable platform for a couple
> of years now. I've done lots of music using Linux sw (two demo-cds), so
> I'm pretty sure about this. In many ways, my current Linux setup is
> superior to my analog recording setup. I have two full-blown Windows boxes
> with up-to-date audio software, but I don't use them. A couple of years
> ago I was still using them, but that's a long time ago.
> Case 1. My recording machine is a relatively powerful dual-cpu box. It
> doesn't have any extra hardware, it isn't connected to a monitor, no
> keyboard, mouse, etc, etc... in other words, it's cheap and it's easy to
> carry around. In my home studio, I can log in to the box using my desktop
> machine. When I want to record somewhere else, I take my Linux laptop with
> me and connect it to the recording server (via LAN of course). I can use
> both console and X-connections when I record (I guess I don't need to
> mention what sw I'm using ;)). I'm pretty sure, that my home setup is
> quite a bit more portable than the average Mac/Win-pc based setups. And
> cheaper, and especially when compared to dedicated hardware solutions. And
> yup, sync is a _very_ important issue, but not for everybody. I record
> live musicians, so I don't have anything to sync to. Often I use
> presequenced backing tracks, but using those doesn't require sync-support.
> And I know that there are _LOTS_ of peole, who can live without midi/smpte
> sync. Not that we should concentrate on making software just for these
> people, but still, it's a fact.
> Case 2. Trackers. I'm a regular user of SoundTracker. It's a great tool
> for making music. I admit that it doesn't suit everybody, but it's still a
> great tool. And more importantly, it compares well to similar Win/mac
> apps. Same with Csound, Jmax, etc... If you prefer to work with these apps,
> Linux has no real disadvantages.
> ...
> And just to make sure, I'm not implying that we should stop here. As
> you've said, Linux audio has a lot of potential. But still, I want to
> remind that people have worked hard on these issues, and for a long time.
> In my opinion we have already achieved much.
> As for myself, my apps are aimed towards a certain type of recording
> environment, but what can I do, that's what I have at my use! I don't have
> a large MIDI-setup, I don't use MIDI-sequencers, etc ... writing code for
> these purposes is difficult, if you can't test and use them yourself. And
> if we start writing software for other people's needs, well, that's
> commercial development. Pay me, and you'll get the sw. That's what my
> employer does. ;)
> --
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> . ... [ aivastus net radio ] /\ .
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