12.23.2008

BMP vs TTF

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As I decided to use my christmas freetime for coding and SE, I took a look at all these awesome sourceforge libraries. I'm an avid SDL user and I'm avid in finding an all-purpose-but-not-that-specific library for font rendering. Some of these libraries promise easy integration, sometimes increased speed and whatever. But the main problem at all is that you have to include atleast one other library, that wasn't mentioned before... Here I'm getting in trouble a bit, because at the moment my internet availability is somewhat limited to 30Mb per day. Isn't a big problem, but it's still annoying! Libraries and their documentations can take - compared to 30Mb - big amounts of HD space. I wasn't very pleased to read that my recently downloaded lib (while beeing not that tiny) needs a second lib, which also required a second one... and so on, so on, so on. It's like playing table tennis, where your bat gets crackier everytime you hit the ball - and this time I'm playing with bandwidth and nerves... So why don't simplify? I thought about using bitmaps instead of normal fonts!

I like the idea of bitmap fonts, it's just a simple way to get customized fonts. And a good implemention allows you to do everything you can do with normal 2D graphics. But unfortunaly BMP's flexibility is limited, especially resizing produces pixel artifacts (what doesn't count for me, 'cause I'm using only one size...). The other side of much more the 'state of the art' way: Render vector fonts via graphics card. Gives you full usage of 3D hardware, customisable look and excellent deformation abilities! But you'll need a good, license-free font + plus one of these bigger libraries. I'm not sure... Using vector fonts is technically much more interesting, but why build in stuff where you wouldn't use all features? Isn't that just a way to say 'I can use fat libraries, I'm a professional'? So, - for me - using BMPs would be much better goal to reach.

I'm concerned about the fact I do sound like an 'old is gold' veteran. I can take months with getting into coding, filled with dozens hours of reading. But when I finally start coding, I'm thinking all that library stuff is bullshit and I can cope with all my problems. Stupid brontosaur, NOW you have this awesome library and don't want to use it?? Oh gosh, I need a psychologist.

12.15.2008

no-undo music

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I'm not sure what I can call music and what not - but I'm sure there are some people out there who insist on having their beloved record as something similiar. Since I discovered the wide of electronic music and their derivations, my preferences got very diverse. One thing I really like is when artists know what they're doing, being capable of using their music programm like a piece of paper - that means no undo! It's similar to some of these insane Oeaki experiments, only with audio. Unfortunaly, I don't know much musicians making such kinds of experiments...

So here I go! I've just got a copy of the FL Studio demo, so I tried to step up where the demo just begins: No save function! No loading function! No Undo! No Redo! No Delete! Only Addition! No MIDI export! No MIDI import! Improvise! Export when finished!

Kind of hardcore competition! Was very fun and turned out in a piece of banging audio. Maybe I can infect more people with that kind of work flow. We should do more improvisated music! It's fun to make and listen!

12.07.2008

Writing sound

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After browsing through a few sound font websites, I do think oneof the nicest sites so far is Hammersound. The site itself is not so smashing as the title, but contains some very nice sound fonts. It's cool to see dozens of free SFs on the web - compared to VST you're a bit limited, but I like that fact. Limitations is often the best way to improve your skills while focusing on the most important parts of music: the melody and rythm. I like being limited to only a few instruments! Take a look at classical composers: they have a dozen of different intruments and can let musicians push whatever great melodies out of their instruments!

Oh, simply great. I love sound fonts.

12.05.2008

Rediscovered MIDI

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Once I tried to use MIDI instruments in my music program, but I didn't the sound quality much... But recently I discovered that my sound card had installed some nice sound fonts and I don't even noticed it :x ! A shame for the past, but a win for the future! I've never used sound fonts or MIDI instruments, so I had to make my own VST plugin viea SynthEdit. It's a neat little tool called MIDIUM with everything I need to get the sound I like.


I uploaded it at willhostfood.com, so everyone who want to can download it.

MIDIUM.dll (1,928 kb)