Well, I can’t quite see it, but this picture is really flattering. Come to think of it, I sometimes look a little better with a short depth of field, a sharp focus, maybe some haze over the lens. Yeah. That’s better. I don’t even need to shave.

Touch performance control on devices like the iPhone and iPad has become increasingly popular, but the question remains: can developers push these interfaces further? Richie Hawtin has initiated a new touch control project and promises more “advanced” control of Ableton Live for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad users.

Details remain murky – developers Liine say they’ll tease out features over the coming weeks. But the system, when fully revealed, will be modular, with a set of touch objects and gestures across a set of apps that provide touch control. The first application is Ableton Live-specific, and provides a new mechanism for controlling Live’s grid of clips. The developers say Griid makes it easier to find clips and see information about them, even when navigating large sets of clips. (You know who you are, those of you with enormous Live sets with a zillion colored clips.)

Different editions will scale to different screen sizes, with Griid Pro for iPad, and Griid for iPhone/iPod touch, plus a Lite version for free.

What all of this means or whether it lives up to these claims is, well, a complete unknown outside of the Plastikman stage. That is, unless you happen to be in Barcelona at SONAR this weekend. Tomorrow, Saturday, Richie will be demonstrating the app in person. Liine tells us:

“At the hands-on Richie will show how he uses the app in his Plastikman Live show. There will also be another laptop or two set up and hooked up with Griid so that they can give it a try themselves.”

If you can make it and want to report back to the rest of us, I’d love to hear it. And I expect to bring more info to CDM soon, if not. But it certainly works for Richie; check out the video below of him using the tool at Detroit’s Movement festival, for his new Plastikman Live show. (And yes, this is bringing back Plastikman and more of the live performance, rather than simply DJ, the side of Richie a lot of us love best.)


If you’re at SONAR, check out http://ghost.m-nus.com/ (and if you’re not, that site has live streams and audio – warning, audio auto-plays!)

The video cuts fast, but in these still images, you can get a better view of the software and Richie’s setup, including the JazzMutant Lemur touch hardware and Behringer BCF-2000 motorized hardware faders alongside the iPad: