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optimus prime

I think I paid $10 for my last computer keyboard.

I think my next one will cost about $250.

No worries, though -- I've got 'til summer to save up for it.

(you might have to scroll down a bit before it sinks in what you're looking at)


( 19 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 27th, 2005 08:57 pm (UTC)
They will be available for purchase?!

WHERE?! o_O;
Nov. 27th, 2005 10:31 pm (UTC)
Yes, and no clue. Something to keep our eyes open for, I'm thinkin'.
Nov. 29th, 2005 01:55 am (UTC)
Should be available this summer, from... that website? Or your favorite retailer of choice. It's the internet -- they mail you stuff.

Speaking of which... Post Musical Instruments is selling everything at half price right now thanks to a NorthernSounds Group Buy. (action code: "group") This applies to their bundles as well, so you can get a ton of great pianos for the price of that keyboard...

I point this out because, well, I'm evil.

Nov. 29th, 2005 07:33 am (UTC)
You ARE evil. Fortunately for me, I can afford buying some things... Like the Baroque Organ. Yum.
Nov. 29th, 2005 09:00 am (UTC)
Yum indeed!
I can't afford it, but I bought... just about everything.

And in Kontact format, no less! Do I own Kontact? Guess I'm about to.

(I get upgrade pricing from owning GPO/JaBB, more control over GPO and JaBB from the upgrade, and will be better able to jump ship when Windows Vista comes out 'cause Kontact is cross-platform where Gigastudio is not)

Incidentally, did you see the new GPO/Sibelius integration? It translates all your notation into appropriate MIDI commands to set articulations where they need to be, toggle legato mode on and off, follow dynamics, etc.

I rather liked this example.

Can't afford Sibelius just yet.

Much torture.
Nov. 30th, 2005 05:44 am (UTC)
Re: Yum indeed!
I never favoured GPO, actually... Have found that combining various samples from different vendors produced a better (and more realistic) result. (To be perfectly honest I never saw what was so great about Garritan's stuff period.) Still, it is cool - especially that they seem to have gone all the way with the integration and not just farted it - and getting Sibelius to sound nice is also good. Personally, though, I would be perfectly satisfied with, say Kontakt Gold. I highly doubt you'd get realistic quality straight out of Sibelius anyway without tweaking in a sequencer (for things such as keyswitching and god knows what else).
Dec. 1st, 2005 10:30 am (UTC)
Re: Yum indeed!
Okay, Garritan just convinced me.

I listened to his Stradivari Violin.

Hot fucking damn. That almost sounds like it could be my dad playing. I'm still not a believer as per GPO, however. Listened to the MP3 demo where they compare it to a real orchestra "side by side". I have however heard that GPO is supposed to be very rewarding to work with, and that is also very important in itself.

I bought three items from Post Music, by the way. "Accordions," "Organs for GigaStudio," and "Anvils & Church Bells Collection." Set me back $101.50 incl. S&H. I can live with that. :D I went crazy over those church bells. Couldn't resist them.
Dec. 1st, 2005 10:01 pm (UTC)
what's so great
The internet ate my response to your last one, but basically Garritan's all about ease-of-use.

His harp library back in the day came with special patches to mirror the pedal stops of a real harp, mapping different scales to the white keys in the right arrangement. The advantage of this was that, beyond forcing you to play in an authentic style, you could gliss at any speed, in any key, where other libraries only gave you a handful of pre-recorded glissandos to work with.

I never bought that one, but it is what initially sold me on Gigastudio.

Garritan Strings, I think we both feel is over-rated. But it came with the Maestro Tool, which was flat-out revolutionary.

GPO has it's strengths and weaknesses. What sets it apart is the control, and the way that complexity is managed for you.

Default setup is largely what you saw with the Stradivari -- Keyboard velocity selects your articulation. Mod wheel drives dynamics. Foot pedal toggles legato slurring. With a little practice, it's more or less performable. Or remap the dynamics to a breath controller, and you're ready to fly with one of very few libraries which take advantage of it.

Likewise, the way that's all organized is what makes real integration with Finale and Sibelius possible -- both programs already had algorithms in place to interpret your score as a human would. Now it's a virtual human who understands GPO's control scheme -- if your score's marked up properly, you shouldn't have to tweak MIDI data in a sequencer at all.

But, yeah. Not all of it's instruments are terribly realistic. When that's a priority, you'll want to replace whole tracks with performance from another library.

(what this excels at, though, is giving you feedback on your printed score before you invest in musicians and a recording studio)

Definitely impressed with the Stradivari Violin. But I don't have that much use for a violin in my stuff. =(
Nov. 27th, 2005 10:03 pm (UTC)
Ohmygoodness. Photoshop will make sense. Final Cit will make sense. Pro Tools might even make sense. Not to mention WoW, etc.

And I notice they include the Apple commans, option, and eject keys.

This concept must be brought to fruition. Then it must be available as a replacement keyboard for a laptop. Yeah.
Nov. 28th, 2005 08:41 am (UTC)
Ooh. Laptop.
I hadn't even considered that.

(but, yes. it should be equally at home in Mac or PC. if Linux had it's own specialized keyboard, it'd support that too.)

Also? You should be able to customize your actual keyboard layout pretty easily. Sick of QWERTY and want to give Dvorak a try? Go for it. Don't like where the slash keys ended up? Move 'em! You're not at anyone's mercy. And when you log out, other users on that machine sign on with their own preferences.

Likewise, on an application-specific level, I'm sure it'll have assignable macros, and if someone gets truly crazy with the SDK, you might be able to re-map modifier combinations independantly of the keys. (as in, C and M are in the right places, but CTRL-C and CTRL-M are swapped. For that rare occasion when a program won't let you remap it's truly stupid control scheme...)

The possibilities are pretty vast.
Nov. 28th, 2005 02:25 am (UTC)
You KNOW I'm all-over that...
Now, the real question is: do the displays change to indicate new functions when you hold down a modifier?

I wonder if we can get some kind of a package deal on these...
Nov. 28th, 2005 08:24 am (UTC)
Maybe not initially, but...
...the drivers are open source. They'll do whatever the public needs.
Nov. 28th, 2005 03:22 am (UTC)
Nov. 29th, 2005 02:28 am (UTC)
I think it'll simplify much of what I do in life. That in itself might be groanworthy -- it's not a life I'd recommend to others. But if we start from the assumption that there's some merit to how I live, enhancing that lifestyle would have to be a good thing.

(my logic may be circular, but at least I'm well rounded!)
Nov. 29th, 2005 04:49 am (UTC)
look buddy
that keyboard

is sexy

how will it simplify? you won't have to reach about as much? come on now. you can't possibly justify it. it's just sexy.
Nov. 29th, 2005 08:38 am (UTC)
why can't sexy be functional?
A keyboard does more than type words on the screen -- it's a control interface for your software. Reaching for the keyboard is faster than navigating a menu, sometimes giving you access to commands the mouse doesn't.

The price of this convenience is that you have to memorize obscure key combinations which have no relevance anywhere else. And if you don't use a piece of software for a while, the keyboard shortcuts flee your mind and you have to re-learn them. Meanwhile, those symbols printed on your keyboard don't serve to remind you, because while their functions may be context-sensitive, their labels are not. It's just the alphabet.

This keyboard changes that. The keys re-label themselves to match their context, so your mind zoning for a sec doesn't really impact performace. Glance down, and it tells you what to press. Or what not to press, as the case may be. You just know what everything does.

Seriously, this is big. It's inspired. When we talk about the spirit of invention; when it's not about commerce but just the purity of the idea, it's not always easy to come up with examples. I'll be holding this one up for a while.

That, and magnetic dry-erase boards. 'cause, let's face it -- there's nothin' cooler.
Nov. 29th, 2005 08:52 am (UTC)
honey i am a perfect example of sexy plus functional.
you win
Nov. 29th, 2005 09:18 am (UTC)
I say we share the victory.
We both win! Champagne for everyone.
Dec. 6th, 2005 05:26 am (UTC)
how about a nice chianti?
No, you were right, I hadn't really thought at all when looking at it to tell you the truth. I just went, "oh, god, that's really f***ing hot, and i NEED IT" for reasons that I, personally, can not justify.
( 19 comments — Leave a comment )


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