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

John Check j4strngs at bitless.net
Sun Aug 15 01:32:17 EDT 2004

On Saturday 14 August 2004 11:08 am, Dave Phillips wrote:
> John Check wrote:
> >On Friday 13 August 2004 01:54 pm, Pete Bessman wrote:
> >>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.
> >
> >Oh, is _that_ what the "demos" link is? Thats what I thought at first,
> >but it didn't seem like it when I started poking around.
> No, the Demos category links to examples of a popular art form that
> combines graphics, animations, and music into what is called a "demo".
> You want the Linux Music On-line category in the soundapps pages.

Okay, I was wondering why it was zip files. I guess it's not _that_ popular ;)

> I agree wholly with whoever mentioned that what we need is a "win" with
> a major recording success. However, I also believe we'll get there. I've
> heard enough nay-saying and bullsh*t over the last ten years to know
> that the words "it'll never happen" are anathema to the Linux

Oh, you can believe it if I have anything to say about it. 7 years ago I 
bailed on my audio career for personal reasons and took up linux. At the 
time, I didn't care too much that there was no decent sequencer or wav 
editor. It just didn't matter. For reasons beyond my control my focus has 
changed back from whence it came and I'm fairly impressed with the current 
state of affairs. I'll spare you the biography but I've learned a lot over my 
various lifetimes and it's all clicking like a room full of flamenco dancers.

> development community. Give 'em the challenge and they make it happen.
> Now for the hard part: preparing the way for normal users to start
> working with this stuff until the user community reaches critical mass.

For the record, tracking and mix engineers are "normal users". Studios do have 
techs, put they're busy too, so getting things up and running has to be 
figured in the cost of things and it can't be open ended like mailing lists 
for things that should be trivial. Support for commercial products is in the 
budget.. I have to formalize things, but I think you can see where I'm going.
"Bootstrap" is the watchword.

> And in case anyone thinks it just can't happen with Linux audio
> software, you should have been on the computer music scene in 1986 when
> the Mac ruled the studios. Even the Atari and Amiga had more presence in
> studios than the lowly Intel-based boxes. Plenty of statements were made
> in the line of "Oh, the PC will never make it in pro studios, it's great
> for spreadsheets and word processors, but not for serious music making".
> Sound familiar ? My, how things do change...

Here's what we need:
A) Be as good or better dollar for dollar (note: $ means $ not "free")           
B) Listen to what pro audio wants (remote GUI is an example)
C) Work with the existing acquistion framework.

> So I'm confident it will happen, but I'm not so foolish to make any sort
> of prediction. Obviously the issue of excellent user-level docos is

I am. I won't give you a specific day and there is a lot of what they call due 
diligence yet to be done but I've been at it for a few months now and haven't 
been shot down yet. 

> glaring at us, hence my original post of this thread. The issue also
> obviously concerns many of us, and I hope these posts have inspired some
> of you to make your own contributions.
> Best regards,
> dp

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