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Score Setup: What are your preferences?

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Score Setup: What are your preferences?

Postby thorrild » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:03 pm

I've just submitted a report on what I consider to be a bug, but I thought it might be helpful to the Notions people if they get additional input on this, so please let me know if I'm off base here:

I find it annoying that Score Setup always returns you to page 1 after use, no matter where you were in the file when you invoked it. My preference would be that it should return you to the page you looked at when you called it up, or perhaps where your cursor is, if that's easier.

Best wishes,
Finn
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Re: Score Setup: What are your preferences?

Postby Raymond Robijns » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:52 pm

Will it be possible also to "remember" the bar/measure where you were when saving and closing the program?
Now I have to skip through pages until I reach the "point of return".

Raymond
PC Intel I7-Quad core, 12 Gb RAM, Windows 7-Pro X64, lots of HD's intern and extern, SONAR 8.5, NOTION 3, Altiverb, Overture, GPO libr., Garritan Authorized Steinway, PianoTeq 3.5 and soon EWQL SO.
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Re: Score Setup: What are your preferences?

Postby 4tune » Sat Apr 10, 2010 3:25 pm

thorrild wrote:I find it annoying that Score Setup always returns you to page 1 after use, no matter where you were in the file when you invoked it. My preference would be that it should return you to the page you looked at when you called it up, or perhaps where your cursor is, if that's easier.


yes I agree it should take you back to the cursor where you left.

Will it be possible also to "remember" the bar/measure where you were when saving and closing the program?
Now I have to skip through pages until I reach the "point of return".


I might request this one as a preference. Though it is not too difficult to press `Home` after loading if it was implemented as not so. :)

On a similar subject I would like to request that the `End` key would take you to the last note of the score (will put this in the FR forum now before I forget)
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Re: Score Setup: how to get back

Postby David Smith » Sat Apr 10, 2010 6:13 pm

My solution for "where am i" after Setup is to press [. The program remembers where you are, but doesn't show it. This gets you back to current position. (I agree it should not be necessary.)

Also, re: home,end keys: on Windows, I'm used to using these, but not on traditionally on Macs. They are logical choices however.

I'd suggest also accepting <Return> and opt-[ for to Beginning, and
sh-<Return> and opt-] for to End
or a opt+ "arrow" keys
(or make cmds user-defineable. Logic does a good job with this for commands and screen setups).

Note that the helper text on the go to Beginning button says Rewind = "Backspace". I find that
a) this doesn't work on the Mac,
b) it is not intuitive to use a key for navigation that also can mean "delete",
c) there is no key on my keyboard that says "Backspace," only "delete" and "del" :)
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Re: Score Setup: how to get back

Postby 4tune » Sat Apr 10, 2010 6:48 pm

David Smith wrote:(or make cmds user-defineable. Logic does a good job with this for commands and screen setups).


I have to agree again here, this feature would really increase Notions personal usability.

Also agree about the dual use of backspace and other keys being confusing sometimes. Again user definable keys would help.
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Re: Score Setup: keystrokes

Postby David Smith » Tue Jan 18, 2011 1:46 am

del & delete have been addressed, so that both work when expected now. Thanks.
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Re: Score Setup: What are your preferences?

Postby Surfwhammy » Tue Jan 18, 2011 9:05 pm

David Smith wrote:Note that the helper text on the go to Beginning button says Rewind = "Backspace". I find that
a) this doesn't work on the Mac,
b) it is not intuitive to use a key for navigation that also can mean "delete",
c) there is no key on my keyboard that says "Backspace," only "delete" and "del" :)


Really! :)

When I switched to the Mac from Windows nearly a decade ago, there were two things that confused me greatly:

(1) not needing to perform strange and bizarre hyperactive techno-rituals like "Windows has encountered an unrecoverable error. Your hard drive will be erased and all you data will be lost. Click OK to continue.", where there only is an OK button on the system modal message box, so the vastly superior actions in this scenario are (a) to unplug the power cable immediately, (b) to bang somewhat gently on the computer case a few times with a hammer, and then (c) to do a cold boot, which tends to work nicely if you have discovered how to repair patently unusual hardware and software problems by banging non-destructively on the computer case while having happy anthropomorphic thoughts, since these types of problems typically are quantum, hence tend to respond nicely to metaphysical interventions that include the phrase "sugar britches" . . .

http://www.surfwhammys.com/music/05_Hey_Sugar_Britches_9.1.mp3

(2) the corresponding Mac keys for IBM/Windows "Back Space" and "Del" (a) being reversed positionally and (b) having different names, which on the new Mac keyboard is made even more confusing by having the same name ("delete"), where the only differences are that "forward delete" has a tiny right-pointing arrow icon and is a square key (as contrasted to the "backward delete" being a rectangular key . . .

[NOTE: In the Windows universe circa the year 2000, there also was a "Delete" key on some keyboards . . . ]

Nevertheless, I think it is reasonable to suggest that there are advantages to all operating systems, so the important thing is to focus on what works best for each person, which is fine with me . . .

Switching topics, I am making progress on devising a formula, system, or standard operating procedure for working with Notion 3 on the Mac, and while it has required quite a few experiments that would be difficult for most people to do, it is coming along nicely . . .

From a high-level perspective, my general goal is to avoid encountering strange behaviors and other types of problems, which certainly is germane to this discussion about score setup . . .

Approximately six months ago, for me nearly everything involved with doing music with Notion 3--except basic music notation--effectively was alien technology, and for example while I had seen the terms "VST" and "VSTi" a few places I had no idea what they were, how such things might be used, and so forth and so on . . .

One of the first things I realized very quickly is that for the types of music I do it is not sufficient simply to have an orchestra, which soon mapped to getting into VSTi instrument libraries and so forth and so on, with this in turn opening the door to an additional set of concerns regarding computer resources, program limits, 32-bit application spaces, and so forth and so on, since some of the VSTi instrument libraries are what colloquially are called "heavy" with respect to computer resources, which also is the case with VST components like AmpliTube 3 (IK Multimedia), Panorama 5 (Wave Arts), and T-RackS 3 Deluxe (IK Multimedia), all of which I use at various times and for colloquial purposes called "plug-ins" . . .

The way this affects score setup is that it becomes a matter of determining the best strategy for avoiding problems related to computer resources and application limitations, since the reality here in the sound isolation studio is that it is not unusual for me to need to have several hundred VSTi instruments for a typical song . . .

So, part of the strategy involves determining logical ways to create a set of Notion 3 scores for a song, since there is are definite limits to the number of VSTi instruments and VST plug-ins on can have in a single Notion 3 score, where at present the newly revised strategy is to have a separate Notion 3 score for different subsets of instruments and to create additional Notion 3 scores for doing what I call "sparkles", all of which have at least a few common instruments to serve as reference points for tempo, sections (verse, chorus, bridge, instrument solos, and so forth) . . .

Templates do not work for me, so instead of using templates I create Notion 3 scores with subsets of specific VSTi instruments and then use them instead of templates, where I open one of these predefined scores and immediately do a "Save As" to make it specific to a song, which works nicely, since I already have tested each specific subset of VSTi instruments to ensure that it does not cause computer resource problems or whatever . . .

Whatever!

Another significant consideration is the ability of a specific Notion 3 score to function correctly with Digital Performer 7 via ReWire, which is the way I cause the VSTi instruments to be rendered in real-time and recorded in Digital Performer as soundbites, which introduces yet another set of procedures, since among other things I have not discovered an easy way to set explicit ReWIre channels in Digital Performer 7 and Notion 3, hence the focus is on minimizing the amount of essentially "busy work" this requires . . .

Having a Computer Science degree and over three decades of graphic user interface (GUI) design experience makes me a bit more cognizant of ways to improve the usability of an application, but it also makes it possible for me to do extraordinarily repetitive tasks without going completely and totally berserk, which is something I discovered when I had a job putting individual price stickers on tube of toothpaste when I was in college, where over several years I put a postage stamp size price sticker on several million individual tubes of toothpaste, since in those days there were no barcodes and automatic barcode scanning check-out registers at grocery stores,which in retrospect is a bit mind-boggling . . .

Mind-boggling!

And since there currently appears to be no easy way to save a set of ReWire channel assignments, I usually have two copies of a score--one with ReWire channels assigned and one without ReWire channels assigned, since assigning ReWire channels effectively makes a track "mute" with respect to being able to hear it in Notion 3 . . .

Something similar happens with "solo" buttons, where even with Digital Performer 7 (which ipsto fact is in its seventh major version) there is no way to clear all the "solo" buttons other than to click on each one of them, although there is a global toggle switch for "soloing", except that it does not actually clear any of the individual "solo" buttons, instead simply toggling between "soloing" and "not soloing" . . .

From a computer programming perspective, doing these types of mappings is not very difficult, and once it is done for one activity essentially the same code will work for a virtual festival of other activities with just a tiny bit of modification, so as I have time I am planning to send the Notion Music folks a few suggestions for enhancements to the Notion user interface, since in addition to being able to have an easy way to configure ReWire channels and to be able to switch among various configurations quickly with a minimal amount of "busy work", I think that having a way to create and to maintain a database of standard musical phrases will make a future version of Notion spectacular, at least for purposes of doing patently silly DISCO and Pop songs, and so forth and so on . . .

[NOTE: Since although I am a registered Apple developer and have been working with Xcode for a few years, I have a lot more experience in the Windows software development universe doing low-level C/API work, where there is a relatively simple way to do what I want to do, since in the Windows universe it is very easy to obtain a copy of the contents of the Clipboard and then to save it as a "blob" or whatever in a SQL database, where it can be recalled and displayed in a "helper" application, and so forth and so on, which as best as I can determine also is the case in the Apple universe, so while there is a way to do this as a third-party custom application, I much prefer that the Notion Music folks do it in a future version of Notion, since I am not so enthused about doing computer programming these days . . . ]

In other words, being able to select a few measures of Heavy Metal double-kick drums in a specific rhythmic pattern from a "popup" dialog with sophisticated audio preview capabilities certainly will make a lot of my work easier, as is the case for a lot of other truly are standard musical phrases for a virtual festival of instruments . . .

[NOTE: Notion 3 already does this for guitar chords, so the basic algorithms exist, although I think that they probably are not done with SQL databases. There are several ways to store, retrieve, and update data, and the primary advantage of using a SQL database is that it is separate from the application, which as a general rule makes it easier to enhance and to maintain, as well as to develop. And it has the additional advantage of creating a new set of products . . . ]

One of my current goals is to be able to do a patently silly "inspired by" DISCO song within hours of one of the lovely ladies (Christina Aguilera, Miley Cyrus, Lady Gaga, Britney Spears, et al.) releasing yet another fantastic but basically annoying hit DISCO song, and the key to realizing this worthy goal is to be able to do all the required work in Digital Performer 7 and Notion 3 very quickly, where the first such effort took over 300 hours, while the third effort already is at 100 or so hours, but so what . . .

[NOTE: This is the "basic rhythm section" done in Notion 3 and Digital Performer 7 for the Surf Whammys song "Put It O Me", which is inspired by "Hold It Against Me" (Britney Spears), although it currently does not have any of the requisite Dubstep and Trance synthesizer "noise bursts" and assorted "sparkles", which takes a bit longer and probably requires Reason (Propellerhead Software), hence will happen sooner or later once I discover how to do it. And for reference, this "basic rhythm section" has 26 VSTi percussion instruments and 21 VSTi melodic rhythm instruments, most of which are "heavy" with respect to computer resources and processing requirements, with each subset being in a separate Notion 3 score (or "project file", which is what I prefer to call the Notion 3 files), and I think that there will be perhaps 100 or 200 additional instruments for the melody, "noise bursts", and "sparkles". And some of the VSTi instruments actually are ensembles or sections, where for example there is a bowed contrabass section, along with approximately 10 other bass VSTi instruments for the overall "bass" stuff, which is working very nicely since I discovered the Hofner Bass in the Xpansion Tank 2 "Bass Collection 2" library (IK Multimedia), which is enhanced in Digital Performer with the Pultec EQP-1A3 Program Equalizer, which gives it a bit of a classic analog vacuum-tube blur and deep bass TONE, which is done with one of the components in T-RackS 3 Deluxe (IK Multimedia) and is heard at far-left and far-right when you listen with studio-quality headphones like the SONY MDR-7506 (a personal favorite) . . . ]

http://www.surfwhammys.com/Put-It-O-Me-1-18-2011-ST25-N3-DP7.mp3

So what!

When I get the formula or system properly designed and tested, I should be able to do a "basic rhythm section" for a patently silly DISCO song in a few days, really . . .

Really!

P. S. As best as I have been able to determine, the recent update to Mac OS X (10.6.6) included a few very subtle changes in the behaviors of operating system API functions that affected both Digital Performer 7.22.44544 and Notion 3.1.281 in a patently strange way with respect to ReWIre, for which devising a "workaround" took me approximately three days and mapped (a) to adding four empty measures at the beginning of the Notion 3 scores; (b) to starting the Digital Performer 7 transport at the beginning of the fifth measure when Digital Performer 7 is controlling Notion 3 via ReWIre, as well as first recording a few seconds of the Notion 3 tracks to get the various buffers preloaded, followed by moving back to the start of the fifth measure and then recording the complete Notion 3 tracks; and (c) to being very careful to avoid using the single-digit Notion 3 ReWire channels with the 1-2 pair being especially troublesome, hence I start with the 10-11 pair . . .

At present, I have not determined whether this odd behavior is specific to Digital Performer 7 or to Notion 3, since the various test scenarios are ambiguous at best, where for example (a) Digital Performer 7 has no problems doing ReWire with Reason (Propellerhead Software) but (b) GarageBand (Apple) has no problems doing ReWIre with Notion 3, which is the reason that I think it is a very subtle interapplication communication initializing (a.k.a., "hand-shaking") problem perhaps with both DIgital Performer 7 and Notion 3, if only because inserting four empty measures in the Notion 3 score and then starting everything always at the fifth measure when doing ReWIre solves the program exception occurrences, where regardless of the specific cause neither Digital Performer 7 nor Notion 3 handle it graciously, with the typical scenario being (a) that Digital Performer 7 instantly gets a program exception and quits unexpectedly and (b) that Notion 3 continues to think that it is being controlled via ReWire and has been instructed to play with no possibility of being stopped, for sure . . .

For sure!

P. P. S. Regarding score setup, my preference is to devise a system that works and does not require me to mess with computer stuff, which in this instance maps to creating and verifying custom scores that I then use as "virtual templates" in a "Save As" cloning scenario--noting in particular that using one of the predefined Notion 3 templates and then extensively modifying it leads to a big mess, hence is best avoided if you need to use a lot of typically "heavy" VSTi instruments from a variety of third-party vendors . . .

Doing everything on an ad hoc basis is fine when you are discovering all the nuances of using Notion 3, but in the grand scheme of everything I think the best strategy is to know exactly what you want to do and how best to do it, which is fabulous . . .

Fabulous! :)
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