The creator of the wonderful glitchDS, repeaterDS, and cellDS Nintendo homebrew music apps has turned his sights to the free and open coding-for-artists desktop tool Processing. The result: a drum machine that mutates and morphs in wonderful ways via a command-line interface. (I almost put the command line bit in the headline, but while I actually adore command lines, I think the more interesting part of it is the way it mutates its patterns in lovely ways. No boring endless step sequence repeat here.)

The tool is called Quotile, and since it is built in Processing and the code is entirely free, you’re welcome to try it out and change it around if you like! Apparently the Mac camp are having some troubles, but I don’t see any reason it shouldn’t work on Mac; the problem is generally that getting Java MIDI running on Mac has some tricky bits because Apple dropped support for the Java MIDI API, even though it’s a standard part of the Java platform. In this case, I expect it’s the library’s reliance on mmj or people having trouble installing that MIDI subsystem that’s the culprit. Keep the faith: it can work, and I hope we can get a standard, reliable MIDI library soon.

The sound source above: Machinedrum, of course.

I’ll give this a try on Linux later today, on the platform that I think has the best MIDI support, hands-down – yes, even compared to the Mac. (I’ll explain why I think that soon.)

Speaking of MIDI libraries, the Processing library this is based on is a new one called MIDI Bus. It’s very similar to wesen’s rwmidi, which we’ve covered before.

The project:
Quotile – new PC MIDI sequencer written in Processing at glitchDS

The free library for Processing (Mac + Windows + Linux)
Small But Digital – themidibus

Previous musical creations in Processing:
Strange, New Musical Interfaces, Built in Processing
DIY 3D Controller: Inspired by Theremin, Powered by Arduino, Processing
Tiction: Animated, Nodal Generative Music App in Progress, in Processing
Build Your Own Game of Life Sequencer in Processing: Video Featuring rwmidi
Help! I’m Trapped in an Acid-Colored Wash of a Thousand General MIDI Pianos!
Spaces and Roots: Manipulating Sound with Processing + Touch, Tangible Interfaces