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  #1  
Old 04-26-2013, 10:23 PM
jim jim is offline
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Default N4 : The Browser

Quick update on N3: I'm prepping a new 3.2 build, barring unexpected delays, it should be out tomorrow...

The Browser:

This is perhaps the biggest UI / usability change for Numerology 4, as it improves workflow in many ways. However, it has also been very time consuming to finish, as I'm working to get all the details right. It replaces the "Module Lib", the Stack Library, the Module Presets window and the AU preset dialogs with 5 tabbed outlines, one each for Modules, Stacks, Audio Files, MIDI Files and a general "Files" tab. (see images at the bottom of this post)

Modules:

The Modules browser provides access to both Factory Modules (pretty much as before) and User Modules. The User Modules area is now in ~/Music/Five12/Modules for easy access (now that Apple hides your "Library" folder...), and is where all module presets are now stored. The browser doesn't allow you to create directories (yet), but you can create them in the Finder and they will show up in the browser. You can even specify a custom sorting (via a text file) -- that's how I get the Factory Modules to sort like they do in N3. Everything in the modules browser is a module preset file -- even the Factory Modules. You can drag module presets directly from the browser outline to a stack to add the module, or on top of a compatible module to load those settings into the module. This means you can very easily build a custom module library and actually use it as a full-time replacement for the factory modules.

All modules --the actual modules in a project-- now have a "floppy disk" icon in the module 'header'. When you push it, the browser 'focuses' on that module by showing only the presets available for that module. You can drag the floppy disk to the browser to save a preset, or to the Finder to export one. There's also an auto-load button so you can quickly flip through a series of presets.

AU Presets are also handled through the modules browser -- they'll work much like module preset files, but will be .aupreset files for for AU modules.

Stacks:

As with module presets, stacks now live in your Music directory (~/Music/Five12/Stacks). You can import them by dragging from the browser to your project. Currently export is still handled the same as before, but I'm planning to tweak it a bit. The browser has a preview panel for all file types, and for Stacks it shows the same info that is available in the N3 stack browser.

Audio & MIDI Files:

These are for file-type specific browsing of ~/Music/Five12/Audio and ~/Music/Five12/MIDI. The preview panel for audio files includes a waveform display and playback controls -- and hopefully also an 'alt output' routing option. Of course, you can create Finder 'shortcuts' and add them to those folders to allow browsing of your Audio and/or MIDI Files where-ever they live now.

I'm hoping to get in a 'focus' and 'autoload' function for browsing Audio files: drag the first files into the Samples Synth or Drum Kit modules, set 'autoload', then just use the cursor keys to load samples in quick succession.

Files:

I'm still working out the details, but this will probably list your home folder, a 'favorites' folder, and all disks -- basically anything that isn't already covered by the other stuff.

Image captions for the 4 (mostly tall & skinny) images below: left to right, top row then 2nd row:
- Modules Browser on Factory Modules
- Modules Browser 'focused' on a MonoNote
- Modules Browser looking at AUs (which need a custom icon...)
- Stacks Browser

Cheers,
Jim
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File Type: png Numerology4 ProScreenSnapz030.png (130.9 KB, 192 views)
File Type: png Numerology4 ProScreenSnapz028.png (101.6 KB, 190 views)
File Type: png Numerology4 ProScreenSnapz027.png (114.7 KB, 190 views)
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  #2  
Old 04-26-2013, 11:25 PM
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jue jue is offline
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Default Custom folders possible?

Hello,
just a quick question to the browser, does it allow custom folders within custom folders for module presets that you can better organize your presets without the big lists that I got in the moment??
best
jue
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Old 04-27-2013, 05:08 AM
nil nil is offline
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Wow, that looks damn promising and a true improvement over N3's browser.

In N3, I often miss the option to collapse the browser the same way we can collapse the modules in stacks : would an option to do that in N4's browser be relevant ?
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Old 04-27-2013, 07:47 AM
eenixon eenixon is offline
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Default N4: The Browser

Thanks for this, Jim.

* Will the default directory where all of this resides be customizable, i.e., to a location other than ~/Music/Five12/ etc?

* Does this mean changes to the library such that, when I save one of your tamplates in revised form, I can both put it in a different, personal folder and also see the original name so I can personalize it but also maintain its background source?

I find the templates and examples library functionality quite frustrating and less than intuitive in terms of standard "Save / Save As..." conventions.

...edN
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:46 PM
jim jim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jue View Post
Hello,
just a quick question to the browser, does it allow custom folders within custom folders for module presets that you can better organize your presets without the big lists that I got in the moment??
best
jue
Yes -- Most of the trees you see in the images are basically file/directory browsers. The Stacks, Audio, and MIDI browsers are views into single directories (and their subdirectories). The Modules browser is a view into both a Factory modules directory and a User modules directory, plus 'derived' trees for AU Synths & FX.

So you can organize what is in the User Modules directory as you see fit -- but there are a couple of important details:

- When a module is 'focused', the browser shows only the pre-determined directory (and sub-dirs) for that module type. For the MonoNote, it is ~/Music/Five12/Modules/MonoNote. You can browse and drag out module preset files for that dir and any sub-dirs.

- When you drag a module preset *into* the browser, the browser auto-focuses on the directory for that module type, and only allows export into that directory, but not any subdirectories --- you'd have to go to the Finder to move the file around.

Now once everything has been working for a while, I may relax these restrictions a bit, particularly the second one. And there is quite a bit that can be done with Finder shortcuts to create custom "views" into the standard preset dirs.

Jim
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:46 PM
jim jim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nil View Post
In N3, I often miss the option to collapse the browser the same way we can collapse the modules in stacks : would an option to do that in N4's browser be relevant ?
I'll look into it -- I also want to be able to 'live resize' the width of the browser relative to the modules stack.

Jim
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:54 PM
jim jim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eenixon View Post
Thanks for this, Jim.

* Will the default directory where all of this resides be customizable, i.e., to a location other than ~/Music/Five12/ etc?
I'm considering various options there. I have to worry about long-term issues, like what happens with a later software version that can't see Numerology 4's prefs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eenixon View Post
* Does this mean changes to the library such that, when I save one of your templates in revised form, I can both put it in a different, personal folder and also see the original name so I can personalize it but also maintain its background source?
If I read you correctly, yes. Everything in the "Factory" directories will be visible (and readonly), and you can save as many variations as you like in the "User" directories.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eenixon View Post
I find the templates and examples library functionality quite frustrating and less than intuitive in terms of standard "Save / Save As..." conventions.
The new setup should simplify everything for everyone. But with both the old system and the new one, the way to think of the stack library and module presets is "import / export" -- those things (unlike, say, stack presets) are not part of the project, they live separately.

Cheers,
Jim
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Old 05-01-2013, 12:22 AM
S1gnsOfL1fe S1gnsOfL1fe is offline
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Just a few words of praise for you...

The new UI looks fantastic! Congratulations on designing such a well thought out and usable interface. Love the new icons and it looks like everything will be easier to find.

There was a thread about N4 over on KVR today and some people (myself included) are getting super excited about it. Keep up the good work!

Cheers,

-S1gns
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  #9  
Old 05-03-2013, 01:03 PM
TwoToneshuzz TwoToneshuzz is offline
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I'm away from audio land for the present. Doing spring maintenance in my day job, and photography which isn't quite as time consuming and engrossing. But after this very intensive time I'll be back with a vengence, and of course be upgrading to N4 too..

Thanks Jim for all your hard work!

Wade
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