This Prototype Imagines DJ Controllers with Touch, Today – No iPad in Sight

While everyone has been pouring over leaks of Native Instruments’ new Traktor controller, few took notice that one enterprising engineer has made his own touchscreen prototype – an entirely DIY effort, from the guy who first took controllers to the market. Kontrol-Dj, the decade-long, one-man engineering shop for DJs, over the summer quietly showed a custom solution for adding touchable displays to existing DJ controllers. There’s capacitive multi-touch support – out of the box, working with Image-Line’s Dekcadance software. And for now, this little video is about the only DJ rig not involving an iPad or Android tablet that uses …


Android Users Get Some Love: FL Studio Mobile Now on Android, Too (And PC)

FL Studio on iOS is one of the nicer, more full-featured production suites out there. And iOS users now get Universal support (so yo don’t have to buy iPhone and iPad apps separately), iPhone 5 display support, Audiobus input and output, multitrack recording, Dropbox import and export and enhanced zipped-up exports of whole projects, and waveform editing – wow. FL Studio Mobile But a bigger surprise is Android support. There’s not complete feature parity support yet, but that’s coming (and most of the functionality is there.) Generally, Image Line claims you can run on any 2.3 or later device. …


Featured Showreel: Arcade Lights Up, Augments The World

Arcade Showreel 2013 from Arcade on Vimeo. If the world seems in need of more dynamic screens and augmented imagination, the new London studio Arcade is poised to make it happen. It’s a beautiful illustration of how to create an effective showreel. Description: Arcade is an interdisciplanary design studio. We work at the intersection of digital and physical, to expose new opportunities from emerging technologies. And it’s doubly worth mentioning for the personnel at Arcade. With artist and interaction designer James Alliban, Microsoft vet and technologist William Coleman, and designer / filmmaker Keiichi Matsuda, I expect great things. Matsuda has …

Not available in stores: the custom touchscreen solution, running an original sampler, that turns Hans Zimmer's musical ideas into reality. Mark Werry is the person who made it all possible.

Interview: Mark Wherry, Man Behind Hollywood’s Digital Musical Instruments, Hans Zimmer Collaborator

Computer innovator Alan Kay famously said, “The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” Mark Wherry is doing as good a job as anyone of inventing that technology. Powering scores from the latest Batman films to Inception, working closely with Hollywood’s leading meastro Hans Zimmer, the work Wherry is doing really does invent instruments in order to invent sounds. New samplers, new touchscreens, new rigs all have to come together just to keep up with the feverish sound design demands of film and game titles. And with sophisticated surround delivery, at a time when studio veterans complain …


An Amazing Free Touch Controller for Ableton Live; How Touch is Coming Your Way

Ableton Live has a number of robust touch solutions, but a creation from Graham Comerford called Yeco takes things to another level. It’s finally a Live touch controller that provides full views of clips, unlimited parameter controls, and extras like drum pads. There are even undo and redo shortcuts. The cost: free, downloadable now. It’s presently Windows-only (both 32-bit and 64-bit versions), but a Mac version is coming early September. The implementation is really elaborate and beautiful, giving you a much wider set of functionality than existing iPad apps and the like, which tend to focus on basic clip launching, …


The Live Mixer, Reimagined, in a Futuristic Touchscreen Device from Line 6

Photo: Marsha Vdovin, snapped for CDM in the mood lighting of the Line 6 press room at the NAMM show. Few things are as essential to music making as the experience of a live show. So it’s about time someone took some risks to see if there’s a better way to run live sound. Line 6’s new StageScape M20d is important because it does just that – it finally says the mixer as you know it doesn’t have to be sacred, and tries to build a better one. Traditionalists might be skeptical – and with good reason, as we see …


Touch, Plus Tactile: In Gaming as in Research, Physical Controls Augment Touchscreens

The gaming industry has made their bet, and it’s that touchscreens go better with tactile controls. Might digital musicians reach the same conclusion? A funny thing has happened on the way to the touch era. The vision of a device like the iPad is minimalist to the extreme: an uninterrupted, impossibly-slim metal slate, as impenetrable as some sort of found alien scifi object. The notion is that by reducing physical controls, the software itself comes to the fore. It’s beautiful conceptually … and then you find yourself tapping and stroking a piece of undifferentiated glass. For navigating interfaces – and …


Brute Force Technology: Zen Piano for iPhone “Senses” Tap Pressure, But Not By Magic

One of the problems with touchscreens is that, even as they have become more sophisticated about tracking multiple fingers at once, they still generally don’t respond to pressure. To make touchscreens really useful for music, we need genuine pressure sensitivity. For that reason, you may be intrigued to see this video of Zen Piano, a demo app for the iPhone and iPod touch. The idea: respond not only to the position of your finger taps, but also to how hard you’re tapping the phone That promises “velocity-sensitive” tapping, which would make touchscreen interfaces more powerful. Here’s the somewhat overheated description …


Gorgeous Timeline-Less Audiovisual Multi-Touch Sequencer, Built in Flash

CASTALIAN / New concept Audio Visual Touch Sequencer from nucode on Vimeo. We’ve talked in the past about the idea of user interfaces and visual output merging. Instead of a UI on one screen and visuals on another, the idea is that the interface itself melds into the output. I can think of few better examples of how this begins to evolve than a video recently posted on Vimeo by user nucode. Working with a projected, camera-tracked multi-touch interface and audiovisual loops in custom Flash-based software, nucode manipulates samples as though on an alien, futuristic interface. The result: a sequencer …