[linux-audio-user] some thoughts about Linux audio software documentation

tim hall tech at glastonburymusic.org.uk
Sat Aug 14 10:09:04 EDT 2004

Last Friday 13 August 2004 18:54, Pete Bessman was like:
> At Fri, 13 Aug 2004 15:16:30 +0100,
> tim hall wrote:
> > Do you want some help writing the docs then?
> YES!
> Hell, ask any developer here that question and you'll get the same
> answer.  Docs are always appreciated.  However, as I said before,
> Specimen is getting a complete UI overhaul, so any docs you write now
> probably won't be relevant in a month or so.

OK, I probably won't get round to doing anything for a month or so then ;)

> I am *not* trying to look a gift horse in the mouth here, but if you
> *really* want to help I think I have a better idea.
> Make some music (real music, finished stuff), and write docs on what
> you had to do to make this music.  Start from the beginning:
> --What distro did you install, and on what hardware?
> --What configuration steps did you need to perform?

Done this and made a start on docs http://wiki.agnula.org

> --What applications did you use, and how did you install and configure
>   them?

Dave Phillips has already made a damn good start on this one too. 
I'm trying to figure out where the gaps are. No sense in duplicating effort. 
The fact that you're on-list now saying YES! to documentation help makes me 
think that Specimen deserves some attention.

> --How did you use all these pieces to make music?

Fair point.

> If there are any docs out there like this, I'm not aware of them.
> They would be an *immense* contribution, both by showing potential
> users how they can make music with Linux, and by showing developers
> the strengths and weaknesses of the scene as it currently is.
> Speaking for myself, the first thing I look for when checking out
> music apps is music created with said apps.  What does it sound like?
> The linux-sound.org music page has only 24 entries, and I'm NOT
> FLINGING MUD HERE (my own stuff sucks), but we're certainly not giving
> any indication of the utility of our software with them.  This is
> because we have two many hackers and not enough UNIT-Es.

I do make music with this software, but I have so far only really produced 
demos and test pieces, which aren't necessarily the best advert. I have 
already contributed some stuff to http://muzik.agnula.org

> I firmly believe that the biggest, most valuable contribution anybody
> not currently wrapped up in a project can make to Linux audio is
> making music with this stuff, and writing a few example docs to get
> new users up to speed rapidly.  If you, or anyone, or better yet,
> *everyone* did this, our scene would be a magnificently better place.

You're on as soon as I've wrapped up some of my immediate projects.


tim hall

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