maclaunch

Here’s the story of how the Mac and Atari found their voice

There’s something magical about the moments in history when computers were able to speak (and sing) like a human. That’s certainly true of Bell’s famous “Daisy Bell” performance (the real-life moment echoed in 2001). But it’s also true of the Mac, which first spoke to uproarious applause.

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Susanne Ciani is a beacon of inspiration - not simply a pioneer to visit in the archives, but working on fresh, new collaborations, a light for 2014, too.

Watch These Amazing Suzanne Ciani Videos – then Let Neotantrik Launch You Into Dreamland

The electronic music calendar makes the shift of seasons readily apparent. It’s not unlike the movies. Gone is summer blockbuster season, sequels and comic book movies, Ibiza and confetti cannons, big-budget special effects. Now, as in the cinemas, it’s date night dinner and a movie, trip-out night, delicious chin scratching, voyages to other worlds. And it’s not that we love this time because it’s smarter and summer is dumber: it’s because this is the season where the festival calendar can bring us deeper pleasures, richer sensations, and more powerful feelings, the shallow popcorn diversions out of the way. There’s indeed …

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RetroCade Synth Board Re-programs Itself Into Atari, C64, Amiga [Open Source Hardware]

You know in sci-fi how you’ll see robots and other machines that can transform, re-program themselves on the fly for a new task? (Okay, sometimes they’re evil robots.) Well, imagine a single-board – looking a bit like an ultra-compact computer – that does that for sound, and you have the basic notion of the RetroCade Synth. For lovers of classic computer audio chips, and chip music associated with gaming and the demo scene, it means a single device that can be all those vintage sounds from the moment you switch it on. You can even leave the computer at home. …

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c64

Jack Tramiel’s Commodore 64, Atari ST in Music, Remembered, as Vision Lives On [Obituary, Gallery]

(CC-BY) Axel Tregoning. (CC-BY) Marcin Wichary. Jack Tramiel, who died this week, had as deep an impact on computer music for the everyday musician as just about any computing industry pioneer. While Jobs, Woz, Moore, Grove, and Gates get a lot of the attention, Tramiel’s legacy was in making computing affordable and accessible. As such, he was indispensable to the computing revolution, and his computers were early forebears of the digital music-making Renaissance. In an extraordinary microcosm of the 20th Century, Polish-born Tramiel escaped Auschwitz, served in the US army, and built the roots of the most successful desktop computer …

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c64

There Will Never Be Another Music Production Platform. Ever.

Supposedly this computer and the idea of a QWERTY keyboard are dead, but you may have to pry them each out of someone’s cold, dead fingers in order to get them back. Photo (CC-BY) Tobias Carlsson. The question of whether there will ever be any music apps for any non-iOS mobile platform is apparently bothering some people. (I don’t just mean one Synthtopia post, either – James is asking a perfectly reasonable question. But in the larger tech world, some people even wonder whether there’s any need for competition at all. And on the future of Android, without naming any …

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For Love of Chips: Chipsounds Instrument and EP and the Gear That Inspired Them

Taste the rainbow of the Spectrum ZX home computer. Photo (CC) diebmx. Call it the 8-bit preservation society. Chipsounds is now available. It’s a new programmable soft synth, filled with custom oscillators and samples of famous and obscure vintage chips, accompanied by an EP of free chip tracks. Far from a threat to fans of hardware, I think this release is a major achievement for fans of digital sounds. Oh yeah, and if you’ve been feeling burnt out on chip music in general, firing up some of the sound of some of these more obscure chips could well change your …

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Play a Virtual Atari 2600 Like a Musical Instrument, Via Jitter

VJing and jamming with Pitfall, controlled from MIDI drums? Heck, yes!Max/MSP/Jitter is a multimedia environment that also happens to be a development tool, the upshot being that you can do bizarre things like emulate the chips of Atari, Sega, Nintendo, and Coleco game systems (covered previously). Now imagine you could turn those emulations into a playable video/music instrument. Imagine you could map the pixels of the graphics to any object, stretch and warp it to other objects, or even use it to control a giant lighting array. The source could be the game itself, or visualizations of the RAM and …

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Atari Marble Madness Music Co-Creator Brad Fuller: 1 Second of Fame

A late submission to our 1-second music roundup deserves its own mention: Brad Fuller writes us: “Attached is 1 sec from Level 2 of Marble Madness arcade game from Atari. I did the music and sounds along with Hal Canon at Atari Games.” Marble Madness Level 2 [1-second MP3 excerpt] Talk about iconic music: while I haven’t played the game since shortly after it came out, I immediately remember this one! But if that one-second didn’t satisfy you, here’s more on Brad: he’s a founding partner of game sound maker Sonaural Audio Studios. If you’re going to the Game Developers …

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mmonoplayer: Emulators for Atari, Nintendo, Sega, Coleco Sound

A fun discovery today from one of our favorite sites, EM411: a new set of ‘chip’ emulators is available from mmonoplayer. Available in a few flavors including Max/MSP externals, PD externals, and a few Pluggo-powered VST’s, the Atari 2600, 5200, 7800, ColecoVision, Sega Master System, GameBoy, NES and IntelliVoice are available. mmonoplayer claims that additional VST’s are on their way. Sadly, as my studio is still sans-PC, I have been unable to enjoy these fine offerings. Anyone interested in detailed reviews of these plug-ins, please send a reasonably powered PC my direction…Alternatively, download the patches and try them out yourself! …

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Best Platform for Music: Atari ST

There’s nothing that fatigues the CDM staff more than pointless platform wars. I have absolutely no sympathy for PC OR Mac snobs. Sure, you think you have superior music applications. The best OS. The ultimate UI. You’re all wrong. The Atari ST reigns supreme. In the spirit of bringing this issue to a close forever, CDM proudly brings you ST Thursday – a roundup of links for those of you making music with the Atari ST. Think I’m joking? Only half- . . . with all the discussion over the cost of entry of computers, the way they’ve divided the …

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