Sunday, November 26, 2006
A new version of Dynebolic has been released, here are some changes, from the release notice:
Starting from this release dyne:II core runs efficiently on solid state devices, loading its system from a compact-flash or similar controller. It has been tested on some embedded setups with extremely good results in terms of speed and power saving. Moreover, this release significantly improves stability and performance, running on a brand new 2.6.18 kernel optimized for low latency realtime. New and updated software include: VNC for remote desktop operation and recording, MPlayer and ffmpeg audio/video codecs, DVD recording tools, Ksubtitle editor, FUSE and pcmcia card autodetection.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
Back in 1982, a personal computer was released that would one day be a cultural phenomenon. The Commodore 64, if you’re not familiar with it, was an amazing computer for its day. It had games and applications galore and was easy to program.
The Sound Interface Device (SID) of the Commodore 64 has lived on as a cult classic. It sounds like a 70’s analog synthesizer or something out of a video game nightmare. It’s difficult to define, yet easy to understand when you hear it. It lives on in the form of hardware synthesizers like the Elektron SidStation, the HardSID internal sound card, midibox SID DIY project, the modern Prophet64 cartridge, software based synthesizers like the quadraSID and Goattracker.
VICE is a Commodore 64 emulator that is available for Linux. This program gives access to a number of Commodore 64 music programs. Here are some programs to download and try out with VICE:
• CyberTracker – Old School style tracker
• Prophet64 1.0 – Emulates a TB303, TR909, and an analog Synth; free version download
• SAM – (Software Automatic Mouth) Old School Robot Speech Synth
• White Box – One of many music collection disks
• Cynthcart – Live performance synth
• Retroskoi – Another live programmable synth
There’s also a huge number of C64 tunes you can listen to natively in Linux at the High Voltage SID collection, an archive of thousands of C64 tunes. They are pretty small and can be listened to in SIDPLAY or the SIDPLAY XMMS plugin.
• High Voltage SID Collection – Archive of SID song files
• SIDPLAY for Linux, XMMS plugin for SID files
• VICE – Linux C64 emulator
• ReFX QuadraSID – This VST plugin works pretty well with FST
• Unknown 64 – Another VST plugin
• GoatTracker - Comes with source code, compiles on Linux - native tracker app
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Jorgen is the creator of Energy XT, a modular music creation program available for Windows that is currently in development and scheduled for a Linux release. Energy XT, a program already widely used and praised, will be making a Linux debut, marking one of the first available commercial music applications for Linux.
How would you describe energyXT?
energyXT is an advanced music composer and plugin chainer. It can be run as a standalone application or as a plugin in another DAW to overcome it's limitations. energyXT2 is designed to be very easy to use with drag and drop, streamlined mixer and a very user friendly piano-roll. And when the final version of energyXT2 is out, it will have a built in synth/sampler and multi-effect processor so that you can create music “out of the box”.
Jorgen, why did you decide to port energyXT to Linux?
I guess I always wanted to. Linux is great, it has a lot of free programming tools and it is community driven just like energyXT. I really luve the fact that Linux can be installed on almost anything, and I cant wait to see what new super-gadgets will show up in the near
future powered by Linux. Just think about running your favorite music software on something like the GP2X but with a somewhat bigger screen and wireless headset mic and midi keyboard.
What sets energyXT apart from other music applications?
Well, it has a lot of cool users and the community is just great. In many ways, energyXT2 is a result of years of feedback and suggestions from the user base. What really sets energyXT2 apart from other music software though, is the huge feature set without being bloated. It is
very small in size, snaps open in a split second, but yet has all the features you would need from simple midi editing to advanced time-stretching and pitch-shifting. Oh, and its fully skinnable.
What do you think of Linux as a music/audio production platform?
I actually see Linux as the future of music production platforms, but at the moment I'm very comfortable with cross-platform development. I want energyXT users to be able to choose what works best for them, so supporting both Windows and Linux from version 2.0 and on is just great. Linux may not have a reputation for being a platform for music, but it works great for me and all new improvements and kernel patches that make their way into the mainline kernel is a bonus.
Will VST's work in Linux under energyXT, if so, how?
Well, yes and no. energyXT2 will support VST's but only if they are compiled for Linux. Of course, there are not a lot of those around at the moment but audio guru Paul Kellett from maxim digital audio (www.mda-vst.com) let me re-compile for Linux all “mda” VST instrument
and effects he has made. And so I did. You'd better check out that mdaJX10 synthesizer, it really sounds great.
What kind of feedback have you received since you announced a Linux version?
All positive. There are energyXT users that use Windows only for music, and they are just waiting for energyXT2 to be released so that they can wipe that Windows XP partition form their HD. And there are Linux musicians thanking me for including the Linux platform when developing (affordable) music software. Well, public beta testing of energyXT2 starts in December so we'll see how the reactions are then. I can't wait!
Will Windows users and Linux users have access to versions of the program for both OS's, or will they be separate liscenses?
They will have access to both. The license is personal, and it means that users may install energyXT2 on any of their computers. So if you have Windows on your desktop PC and Linux on your laptop, you need only buy one license.
What do you think about open source software?
I think it's great, and I have all respect for people that develop software and share it with others for free. I don't favor one license over the other though, and hope to see both open source and affordable commercial software on Linux in the future. I really don't mind paying for software that developers have spent thousands of hours to complete, and just think about all the hair pulling trying to nail those bugs.
Are there any Linux applications you use or would use in conjunction with Energy XT?
No, its all energyXT2 over here, still it would be great to see more native VST plugins for Linux. But they will come for sure.
What distribution of Linux do you run?
Ubuntu, it's easy to install and easy to upgrade. I do find it a bit bloated though so I'm always on the lookout for something new, but I never download a distro that doesnt fit on a single CD-ROM.
Random concluding question: What is your favorite movie?
I was thinking Bladerunner, but anything with Lara Croft will do;)
Thank you, Jorgen, for hanging out with Linux Rock Star and talking about EnergyXT!
Find out more about EnergyXT:
Friday, November 03, 2006
ArtistX is a live DVD distribution of Linux.
From the homepage:
"ArtistX is a LIVE DVD containing nearly all the free multimedia softwares for audio, 2D/3D graphics and video production for the GNU/Linux operating system. No need to install it on the hard disk as it is a bootable DVD, but you can of course install Debian GNU/Linux and addl the most useful softwares for you by yourself. "
This looks very interesting with a lot of great applications. Check it out.