Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Upcoming Presentation: An Introduction to Ubuntu Studio

An Introduction to Ubuntu Studio
presented by the Ubuntu Vancouver LoCo community
Nov 21st at 2pm

This coming Saturday, Ubuntu Vancouver warmly invites you to learn about the free and open source multimedia production software in the Ubuntu Studio operating system ( http://ubuntustudio.org ). Ubuntu is the world's most popular Linux/GNU distribution and Ubuntu Studio is an official derivative that's designed specifically to help Audio, Video, and Graphic artists. This free community-organized information session will cover all the basic information about Ubuntu Studio, the multimedia creation software it contains, how to learn more, and how artists utilize the software on a daily basis. Many of the applications also work on windows and mac operating systems, so all operating system users are welcome and encouraged to attend. Some Ubuntu Studio installation discs will be available.

This event is presented purely by volunteers and will take place on Nov21st at 2pm in Vancouver. Further information is available at http://is.gd/4Xfmq (the event page) and at http://is.gd/4Mihd (the agenda page). It would be nice (for organizational purposes) if attendees could RSVP at http://is.gd/4Xfmq but it's not required.

Audio artists will find Ardour (a professional DAW), LADSPA plugins, Hydrogen (a drum machine), Denemo (a notation editor based on the lilypond score language), Mixxx (DJ software), PureData (a multimedia programming environment), Audacity (an audio editor), and SooperLooper (a live looping program) particularly interesting - to name just a handful of the free programs installed.
Video artists will find Kino (a DV editor), Blender (a video editor and 3D compositor), and Stopmotion (a stop-motion animation program) quite useful and interesting.
Graphic artists will find Gimp (a bitmap editor - similar to photoshop), Inkscape (a vector graphics editor), Blender (a 3D compositor), Scribus (Desktop publishing software), Agave (a colour pallet tool), and a number of font editing tools and free fonts to be very helpful.

The presentation is expected to take just over an hour, and will include local users and developers of Ubuntu Studio sharing their knowledge, and answering your questions. If you're unable to attend but would like to learn more about Ubuntu Studio, a video recording of this session is planned - I will post the link to this video once it's uploaded. Thanks for your time.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Interesting Online Journal

I just wanted to post a quick blurb about the latest eContact! from CEC (Canadian Electroacoustic Community). It's theme for the 11.3 release is focused on Open Source. There are a few great articles by Jörn Nettingsmeier that I found useful, and hope others will read. I find it slightly sad that an Ableton producer has an article in here, while many other developers and community members of FOSS programs didn't submit (myself included). 11.3 Logiciels audio « open source » / Open Source for Audio Application

In other news, I can't wait for Ubuntu Studio's Karmic Koala 9.10 release on October 29. This release will have an official RT release version as a kernel that has proven quite stable in the latest beta reports.
I'll be playing October 22nd in Vancouver Canada, at the COPYRIGHT/COPYLEFT and will have a stack of Release Candidate images I plan on giving to friends. If you're in the Vancouver area and would like a copy, come by!

I'd love to see some community artwork developed for that release.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Ubuntu Studio Jaunty

A couple weeks ago Ubuntu Studio released their 9.04 version. I'm sure you've all installed and begun to configure/tweak/adjust all kinds of settings (well those of you who didn't encounter the random freezing on the RT kernel that some have). I just wanted to give a quick update on a couple new features.

Calf plugin pack. I was able to get this package accepted for the Jaunty cycle, which won't be the only package I help Ubuntu out with. It's a multi-function set of plugins that will work as LADSPA plugins in any LADSPA host (ardour, audacity, jack-rack, etc...), LV2 plugins (once the LV2 standard catches on a little more), or inside their standalone host (which provides the nicest graphical interface right now). For their full documentations take a look at http://calf.sourceforge.net
However, I should note that there are a couple instruments included in the pack that may seem inaccessible to most. This is because the Calf plugin host takes JACK midi input rather than the older ALSA midi that most apps currently use.

Some of you may have already seen the new midi tab within qjackctl's connections window (or worse, had your soundcard on one tab with your programs on the other). Don't despair! There's a solution to bridge the JACK midi and ALSA midi! Introducing a2jmidid http://home.gna.org/a2jmidid/ it serves as a bridge between the two worlds. Infact, I've already built a package for Jaunty and it's sitting in my PPA repository at https://launchpad.net/~stochastic/+archive/ppa

FFADO drivers are now available from Ubuntu! Yes, that's right the world of firewire soundcards just got a whole lot easier. However Jaunty still ships with the old firewire stack, so configuring firewire permissions can be a touch tricky. For most, Ubuntu Studio Controls should be all you need to get things running (though you may find you need to add a 'video' group if one isn't already created). However, for some people who've upgraded into Jaunty rather than installing fresh, it seems Ubuntu Studio Controls doesn't properly set the firewire permission. If this might be affecting you, edit (with sudo permissions) /lib/udev/rules.d/50-udev-default.rules and add this line
KERNEL=="raw1394", GROUP="video"
save the file, (make sure you're in the video group) and reboot.

I've noticed with my Presonus Firepod that the MIDI from FFADO complies with the new Jack MIDI, so some legacy applications have required me to use the above mentioned a2jmidid program as a converter.

I should also make mention that Ubuntu Studio Karmic Koala is looking for more testers willing to do an install every month or so (on either a test partition or a virtual machine). Just drop me an e-mail at: afterthebeep a t gmail dot c o m and I'll include you in the discussion. It's looking like the new 2.0 firewire stack will be included in this release, so even less configurations will be needed, but more tests WILL be needed to start.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Copyleft Call for Artists

Vancouver New Music Festival 2009

:::Call for mash-up artists and sonic collagists:::
The 2009 Vancouver New Music Festival will focus on copyright and appropriation, and will be presenting musicians who have been working and reflecting on issues related to copyright/copyleft, using mash-ups and sonic collages and other approaches. We are looking for local musicians who would like to bring their contribution to the discussion. Selected artists will be invited to perform opening acts at the VNM Festival.

Please send a short bio, a note explaining how your work relates to the theme of Copyright/Copyleft, and a short sample of your work in mp3 format to:
giorgio@newmusic.org by July 15, 2009 .

As space is limited only a few artists will be selected for performance.

Monday, March 9, 2009


I came across this, noticed the deadline extension to March 15th, and thought I should spread the word (as deadline extensions usually mean a lack of submissions).


PdCon09 is the "Third International Puredata Convention", to happen in São Paulo-Brazil/July 2009

EMAIL: pdcon09@estudiolivre.org

NEWS (feb 15th):

- Online Submission procedure is opening on monday 16th!!!

- New Templates and Forms will be posted when the submission is opened!


Puredata, or just Pd , is an open source tool for multimedia programming. Because of its open source nature, much of its development result from a community effort of developers worldwide. Some centers do have more people engaged, like the places that held the two previous conventions.

the first convention took place in Graz, Austria, in 2004 http://puredata.info/community/projects/convention04/. The second happened in Montreal, Canada, in 2007 http://pure-data.ca/en/. It is a great satisfaction that we continue this event by bringing it to yet another continent, with the intent to promote the formation of an important group of developers locally. In fact, in may of 2008, we had a national convention in Brazil http://www.estudiolivre.org/tiki-index.php?page=Encontro%20PD, which followed the same format of the previous international conventions, and worked as a first gathering to organize this international event. The format includes the show of artistic works, academic works, discussion regarding the interests of the community, and diverse courses.


We invite artists, producers, developers and further enthusiasts of the open source tool Puredata to send works and projects alike in the following categories:

A) Art Festival: (Art Installations, Concerts, Performances & Audiovisual Presentations).
B) Mini-Courses & Workshops.
C) Paper Sessions/Posters.
D) Round Tables & Discussions.

Applicants are invited to submit in multiple categories, especially if related (example: paper + artwork) - not that this will favor in the selection process.

Please note we are looking for a diverse collection of works, hence there might be a selection among several similar proposals (and more unique and original ones might have some advantage).

Let us know if you have an institution support that may cover travel expenses, we are looking for partnerships to help with funds.

The event will be held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, from July 19th to july 26th, 2009.

Possible (yet to be properly officialized) Locations & Partnerships:
- MIS, Sao Paulo's Museum of Image & Sound.
- PUC, School of Multimedia & Design.
- SESC-SP, Sao Paulo.

Promotional Support:
- CCSL (FOSS Competence Center) http://ccsl.ime.usp.br/


Acceptance notice: APRIL 10th, 2009!
Here is the address to send works & questions to: pdcon09@estudiolivre.org

Addresses of the Official webpage for news updates & more info:

Proposals for the Art Festival:
Performances, Concerts, Audiovisual Presentations & Art Installations (audio And/Or Visual):
As it is the general concept of the event, we long for the discussion regarding the aesthetics and politics of Free / Open Source Software Culture & technology. In such context, we welcome all forms of works related to audio and/or visual, including real-time interactive works, improvisations, Live electronics/instrumental/electroacoustic mixes, Sound installations, Performances, Network art, Robotics, Software Art and Interdisciplinary works.

Demonstrations and General Info about Artistic works can be submitted online in Portuguese, Spanish, or English. Please, specify the necessary materials so we can do our best to provide them.

If language is a part of the artwork, the festival is open to any idiom, although subtitles in English should be provided when applicable.

We look for art installations that adopted Puredata in its development. Nevertheless, at the last extent, we are open for works realized under the context of Puredata (using puredata in some part of the process) as well as open source tools.

We are looking for partners to help us with tickets. Any suggestion is welcome.

Note for ART-INSTALLATIONS (Audio And/Or Visual):
In order to avoid dependence on travel funds from the event, it would be nice to have some works installed without the need for the artist(s) to be on-site. This also implies that such works should be technically simple.

Call for Posters/Papers:
Abstracts and papers may be submitted in English. The works will be organized in categories depending on what we receive. At first, we contemplate a greater distinction into 3 categories: Technical, Artistic and Theoretical.

The topics are generally open to the usage of Puredata in interactive art production/research, the philosophy and social aspect of Free Open Source Culture, and scientific research. Some possible themes could include:

- Programming Puredata externals
- Puredata versus Max/MSP
- Puredata versus SuperCollider, CSound, Processing and alike
- Hacking Puredata
- Future Projections for Puredata
- Hacktivist culture
- OpenContent and Creative Commons versus Intellectual Property forms
- Finding an Art Historical context for Open-Source Software Art
- Sampling and Plunderphonics as artistic strategies
- Computer-Supported Cooperative Work
- Networking
- Live Coding
- Philosophy, Culture and Sociology of Open Source Software and Open Works
- Aesthetics of New Media/New Technology Art
- Using Puredata in Science/Research & Artistic Works: (Digital Signal Processing, Generative Works, Artificial Intelligence/Life & Computer-Aided Work in General, User Interfaces - Human computer interaction/Virtual reality interaction -, Realtime Performance, Auditory/Visual perception and cognition, Acoustics/Psychoacoustics Modeling, Sound Synthesis, Timbre & Sound Models, Biological and medical uses of Puredata.

And so on...

Check Submission of Works for Poster & Paper guidelines

If you wish to send a Poster, the limit is 4 pages, other works are limited to 6 pages.

Round Table and Discussions should be proposed on the puredata list:http://lists.puredata.info/listinfo/pd-list, to be discussed and decided upon previously by the community and participants in general.

The rest needs to be sent through our online system, with the provided Paper Template And Forms

The online submission is due to open on monday, Feb 16th of 2009, check http://convention.puredata.info for news and links. Questions about it must be sent to .

Poster Guidelines: 120cm height x 90cm wide

Papers are limited to 6 pages and must be submitted as PDFs.

If you wish to send a Poster, please send a short Paper limited to 4 pages.

We are studying the possibility of publishing the works online (both papers & Posters) in digital/hypertextual format s well as in a printed version with DVD-ROM.



Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Beginner ChucK instruments & a cool book

Well, I've finished an assignment for one of my music classes where I was asked to make three instruments (at least one using fm synthesis), document them, and use them in a composition. The class was a CSound based class, but I hate the rigidity of that language, so I convinced the prof (the one and only Barry Truax) to let me write in ChucK.

I've put them all under GPL and I'll publish the documentation under the GNU Free Document License. The reason why I'm blogging about this? Well, there's two motivations 1) I've yet to publish this stuff anywhere, so what's the point in a GPL license if I don't publish it 2) I think with the accompanying documentation, it's actually a nice intro for someone to learn about ChucK. Don't get me wrong, the ChucK documentation is quite nice, and I'm not about to claim you shouldn't read it if you want to learn ChucK, but seeing a slightly more extensive sythesis design algorithm might be a bit more of an idea starter for the beginner ChucKist.

So here's the documentation: InstDocs.pdf
Instrument 1: add.ck
Instrument 2: gauss.ck
Instrument 3: fm.ck

Oh, and I though I should also mention this wonderful new book that I have no affiliation with, but have been reading quite heavily recently. FLOSS+ART it's a series of essays detailing the changes that FLOSS has brought to Art. Don't miss the torrent link at the bottom of the page!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Lack of time / New PPA repo

Hello to all you dedicated RSSers out in blogland. I know I've let my posting rate on this blog slip way off, but I do see a resurgence coming soon... But until then, I just thought I'd let everyone know that I've rigged up a PersonalPackageArchive at launchpad.net, and have begun packaging some software for Ubuntu. First off the block is the Calf plugins (Ladspa, lv2, dssi, and standalone) by Krysztof Foltman that I mentioned in a blog post a while back.

The PPA can be found at https://launchpad.net/~stochastic/+archive and will host packages (for now anyways) of Jaunty, Intrepid, and Hardy. It should be noted that these are NOT OFFICIAL packages and they come with no warranty of any kind - use at your own risk. But they seem to work fine so far. Please don't hesitate to let me know if you encounter any issues with it, or would really like a package built, etc...

Oh, and on another 'blowing my own horn' note, I've uploaded an icon set that I put together (mostly from J3Concept's artwork) to Ubuntu-Art.org. Here's the direct link: http://www.ubuntu-art.org/content/show.php/Humanitarian?content=92965 Maybe I should package it and put it into my PPA - or maybe I should concentrate on my schoolwork.