6/23/97 11:00 PM
Subject: MAX Digest - 22 Jun 1997 to 23 Jun
1997To: Recipients of MAX digests 

There are 8 messages totalling 331 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

  1. vigorous motion 68K bug
  2. reverse time and timeline?
  3. IRCAM's MAX archive (2)
  4. info dialog (blah blah blah...)
  5. UK distributor - CHANGED !!
  6. A Rant (was: New vs. Old)
  7. R&D with Max


Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 08:08:38 +0200
From:    "Dr. K@rlheinz Essl" 
Subject: Re: vigorous motion 68K bug

Hi Chester!

You wrote:

> 3.5.4 seems to still contain the 68K 'vigorous motion' bug. For example,
> given:
> [num box] -> [expr ($i1 + 1)] -> [num box]
> drag the first box value up and down with the mouse, and my IIvi, 20Mb
> RAM, crashes every time. I've had the same kind of crash using the [if
> ...] object.

I tested it on my PowerBook 190 (which houses a 68040 CPU), and I am lucky
to say that I had not a single crash.

Best wishes,

Dr. K@rlheinz Essl
SAMT - Studio for Advanced Music & Media Technology
Bruckner-Konservatorium Linz / Austria

     Visit the MindShipMind - an interactive multimedial Web Oracle



Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 16:25:04 +1000
From:    Iain Mott 
Subject: reverse time and timeline?

Dear Max List

I'm writing a program mapping cartesian coordinates of a moving object (a
real object) to two setclock objects - with the aim of using these to
control two timelines. All this works fine while the coords are
incrementing - but not in reverse. I've tried various ways of resetting
timeline's pointer with a "locate" message - but to no avail. Does anyone
know a way operating timeline in reverse?


Iain Mott                                               ph      (03) 6224
Conservatorium of Music                 Int     +61 3 6224 8461
GPO 252-63, Hobart 7001               fax     (03) 6221 7318
Tasmania                                            Int.    +61 3 6221 7318


Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 08:44:40 +0200
From:    "Dr. K@rlheinz Essl" 
Subject: IRCAM's MAX archive

What happened to the MAX archive at IRCAM? I know that it is in the process
of reorganisation, but I was unable to find the new URL.


Dr. K@rlheinz Essl
SAMT - Studio for Advanced Music & Media Technology
Bruckner-Konservatorium Linz / Austria

     Visit the MindShipMind - an interactive multimedial Web Oracle



Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 10:24:30 +0100
From:    dudas 
Subject: IRCAM's MAX archive

IRCAM's Max archive is still there!!

It just got updated last weekend, and a document describing its contents
has finally been placed there, too!

What's new?  Well, I suppose that depends on when you last accessed the
There are a lot of 3.5-compatible FAT objects, including a completely FAT
version of Essl's RTC_Lib (v. 3.1).  A couple of new "McCartney" objects
(permute and rotate) got added to the "List Ops &tc" package, and there are
plenty of other goodies which are all PPC compatible. (Some of which are on
the Max3.5 CD-ROM, and some of which are not.)

The URL is:

You MUST go directly to this location because it is NOT visible from its
parent directory!!! Yes, I know that's annoying, but that's the way it is
for the moment. If it really bothers any of you, please send complaints to
your country's parliment, senate, soviet or other governing body.

If you're wondering just what is this forumnet thing, take a look at the
following publicity for the Forum Ircam - Ircam's software user group.




Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 12:59:47 +0200
From:    Peter Castine 
Subject: Re: info dialog (blah blah blah...)

Jean Favory  asked:
>>I'm trying to make a "Get Info" dialog, hence I would get and set
>>"dialog item text" with numerical values. But I can't use the
>>"NumToString" toolbox function.

David Z. suggested:
>You might not be passing a long integer, but I can't tell from
>your code, since you didn't show how the variable was declared.

I'd thought about suggesting the same, but CodeWarrior (and every other Mac
C-compiler I've worked with) automatically typecasts short to long integers
as needed with Toolbox calls. That is... if you're using function
prototypes and reasonably recent headers for the Toolbox calls.

One other thing that went through my mind: _NumToString can cause memory to
move. I don't think that the Get Info routine would be called at interrupt
time, but if the routine in question were called at interrupt time, you
could get unpredictable behavior. I would expect that behavior to include
crashes, not just strange results.

Jean: I would check both the above-mentioned concerns. Hope that helps.


------------------ ------------------
Dr. Peter Castine           | Coffee --   |
                            |    The 100% natural substitute for sleep.
Have Mac, Will Travel       |


Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 17:09:34 +0100
From:    "Gregg Wagstaff, University of Dundee,
Subject: UK distributor - CHANGED !!

Dear UK Maxers

I've just had some frustrating news others of you should know about:

After 2 months of waiting and various phone calls for the 3.5 update, and no
indication from MCM as to its arrival date, I rang them again. Only this
to find out that MCM aren't distributing Opcode products anymore !!! They
are going through their "backlog" of orders and refunding them all one by
one. Which means its up to US to re-order through a different company -
the new distributer is FCV (or is it SCV) 0171 923 1892. This goes for
any Opcode upgrade or product you're after.

This stinks doesn't it.

Best wishes,

Gregg Wagstaff.


Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 16:33:06 -0700
From:    Mike Metlay ++ Atomic City 
Subject: A Rant (was: New vs. Old)

Nick Rothwell, my partner in crime and curmudgeon at large, writes--
>There are a lot of wonderful "obsolete" machines that are
>>fantastic for a personal audio workstation.
>Agreed. For those of us not doing digital audio or video, the choice is
>even greater. This PowerBook 520 I picked up for $800 is a beautiful
>machine - a great MIDI engine - and I have no intention of upgrading any
>part of it at the moment. (David Z. still hasn't got back to me with the
>alleged single reason why I'm going to be moving to PowerPC...)

For my part, I work with a pair of 33 Mhz 68030 machines, one a
desktop model and one a Powerbook 165. Some day, I will convince
myself that the suite of software I'm using for MIDI (System 7.1 and
OMS 1.2.3 over Galaxy 1.2.9 and Vision 2.0.8) and my hardware
interface of choice (opcode Studio 5LX) are as rock-stable on the
PowerBook, with its historically MIDI-iffy serial ports, as they are
on the desktop Mac.  Once I do, I'll let my wife keep the desktop Mac
for good, and then I'll begin shopping for a second Powerbook to run
MAX on (perhaps a 520).

Despite lingering doubts and fears about the serial hardware of the
Powerbooks (talk about adding ifs to ifs!), I prefer them in my studio
for one simple reason: you can stack up a mess of them without taking
up a bunch of room. The essence of stable performance in a computer is
to get it working and then to STOP SCREWING WITH IT. That's why my
main MIDI machine is frozen where it is: I don't dare upgrade
ANYTHING, for fear of destroying the thin thread of reliability that
keeps me productive.

And that's why I'm planning on finding a nice old used PB to run MAX
on; because (with a tip of the hat to David Z, who does his damndest
to satisfy everyone but unfortunately is still only human) MAX has as
part of its fascination the ability to evolve and add new features and
abilities...and that makes it as comfortable a bed companion to my
established working system as an African fattail scorpion would be to
my daughter.

David cannot possibly envision all conflicts, all manners in which his
software can fail when presented with a platform and other software. I
therefore consider the ideal host for his software, which MUST evolve
(although Nick may disagree with me on that point--he has tools that
work in MAX and wishes them to remain so, whereas I see MAX as toy and
pet as much as tool, making growth-observation part of the fun) to be
the most nearly safe and sterile environment possible: a Mac that does
nothing, NOTHING, but run MAX. Minimum acceptable System, few if any
extensions beyond OMS, no other major apps or conveniences, not even a
menu bar clock. Slap an Opcode interface on it and stand clear.

Truly integrated and growing systems for creative activity are a
lie. Software upgradability as a viable option to establishing new and
separate boxes to add abilities is a dubious half-truth at best. If
people were sensible enough to treat a new version of software with
the same caution as they exercise around a new bacterium, which could
either provide a cure for a resistant strain of disease or cause
horrible death, then at the very least we'd have fewer people wearing
injured expressions and complaining about how their new software
package broke their nice functioning system. Well, DUH--you just shot
your healthy organism full of something alien and possibly poisonous!

The counter-argument you might raise would be, "But that's ridiculous!
That would mean you'd have a whole ROW of computers, one per major
app!"  My answer would be, "And your point is....?" Most of the
studios I've been in that operate this way are churning out music with
very little down-time; most of the ones that do everything in one box
spend more time fixing problems than making music. I fully envision
myself working in a studio within the next three years containing at
least two Powerbooks, possibly three if Galaxy continues its downward
spiral and careful research indicates that Sound Diver won't work in
the existing environment, and a huge Pentium for slinging digital
audio around. (Yes, a Pentium. For ME, perhaps the biggest Windows
hater in history. That's a subject for a different forum.)

The truth is that these machines are not designed to work perfectly
with a wide suite of applications for music on them, because the
people who write said applications do not WANT them to coexist.  MOTU
and Opcode are not in this business to make nice-nice with each other;
they are in this business to crush, kill, DESTROY each other, and that
means that there is no damned reason why anything they sell should
cooperate with anything anyone else sells, unless--and this is the key
point--unless the market demands it loudly enough for them to listen.

The supposed support of OMS by other vendors is the computer
equivalent of a wolf rolling on its back and submitting to an alpha;
MOTU invented FreeMIDI because it had ideas that things could be done
better, and used those ideas as the technical core of a challenge to
Opcode's supremacy. None of this, I hope, will be a surprise to
anyone, nor should be the fact that FreeMIDI and OMS define poles of
an incompatible software world.

Don't look to anyone for a standard, least of all Apple, who regard
MIDI users as the biggest source of headaches per capita of ANY of its
userbase, and sincerely wish we would all crawl under a rock and DIE.
There will be a standard when one firm subjugates its competitors or
provides self-interest-based arguments in its favor that can sway the
whole industry at once (MIDI itself is an example of this). While there
is competition, there will be conflict, and your work will suffer for
it. Learn to minimize and isolate the conflicts in whatever manner works.

>>Sometimes, I think we're a bit doomed, since these machines
>>are quickly getting so complex, they will eventually be like the weather
>>where some days the machine will please you, other days be a total piece
>You mean yours isn't?

And this is, of course, the ultimate point. Where do we draw the line
in the sand and stop injecting our dying machines with more poison?
I've drawn my line at a point further back than most folks...but then,
how many of you can claim over two years of solid studio work without
a single crash or system incompatibility, ever? You go with what works
for you, and this system is what works for me. Fatalistic,
pessimistic, to be sure, but also practical and with no false sense of
higher aims. The only motive is profit. The only impetus is success.
Work within those rules and the tools you choose will be sharp and true.


On lost installs: "I wouldn't rule out that you actually have a keydisk with
a common surface error. Then it would catagorize under 'shit happens,'
instead of 'gross contempt.' I'm sure this doesn't help." (a. van der
Mike Metlay - ATOMIC CITY - P. O. Box 81175, Pittsburgh, PA  15217-0675 USA
 =  --   --  800.924.ATOM  =
CD orders via LOFTY PURSUITS: 800.548.6724 & 904.385.6463, FAX 904.668.5825


Date:    Mon, 23 Jun 1997 23:10:42 EDT
From:    Nick Longo <71477.2332@COMPUSERVE.COM>
Subject: Re: R&D with Max

I got some e-mail because I neglected to mention that the
name of the gesture synthesizer stand-alone I plugged last
night is Flex Processor 1.2.  It's supposed to be available
at as of two weeks ago, but in
any case it's available at any Info-Mac mirror site in the Edu
folder and also in the Midi forum on Compuserve, on AOL, and on
AOL in Sound Studio and Stage.  Thanks again to many contributors
to this list whose helpfull suggestions to me as well as others
actually made it possible for me to put this patch together.


End of MAX Digest - 22 Jun 1997 to 23 Jun 1997