Mixx Mobile on Symbian


Mixx Mobile is now available on the Symbian platform from Clearec. I wonder if they'll port to any other platforms?

Larva Labs apps for T-Mobile Sidekick

A big thank you to Jeremy for this. It isn't often that you get news of a new mobile music application, but even less often do you get news of 5!

These are from Larva Labs and according to their PDF are all destined for the T-Mobile sidekick platform, which is not one I know much about at all. Anyway, here's what they have to say about their forthcoming applications:


KickSynth is a 10 track MIDI music production studio for your phone. It includes over 100 instruments and a full drum kit. Copy/paste/transpose support along with shuffle mode, tempo control and dynamics are included. Create songs
up to 5 minutes in length and email them to your friends.


KickMix is a fully functional set of DJ turntables that allows you to DJ your MP3s right on your phone. Cross fade, pitch shift, backspins, beat matching, beat juggling - it's all possible with KickMix.


Kick Drum Old School is the next edition of the popular drum machine that lets you write beats on your phone. It
comes with five full drum kits, including two new old school sets, and a human beat box! Sounds can be played both forward and reverse, with funky results. You can create double-length beats. Of course, the original Kick Drum features are still supported: tempo range from 50 to 300 BPM, soft and hard drum hits, and a shuffle mode, email your beat for
listening and editing by your friends.


AudioLab+ lets you record up to 30 seconds of audio through the built in mic, then edit it, apply effects and send it to your friends. Ask your friends the name of the song you're hearing, or just send fart sounds like we know you want to. This new version triples the record time, increases the save limit, and includes more effects.


BeatLab is a mobile beat generator that can cut up, rework and generate beats on the fly to give you new ideas and inspiration. Use a bunch of "mutators" to change your beats in surprising ways, or take two separate beats and slam 'em together to create something totally unexpected. Email it all to your friends so they can mess with them too. Fully compatible with Kick Drum Old School beats.

These all look interesting to me, but I know nothing about the platform at all. I will have to get in touch with the developer to see what they've got planned.

M-Audio MicroTrack II


M-Audio are releasing their MicroTrack II next month. I have to admit that it is a nice looking recorder, but expensive. Here's what their site says about it.

"The redesigned MicroTrack II brings even more professional features to the original high-fidelity mobile digital recorder that’s been embraced by audio and film professionals worldwide. With an extended input gain range, analog input limiter, 48V phantom power, faster file transfer rate, seamless recording of files beyond 2GB in size and other enhancements, MicroTrack II delivers the highest quality mobile recording experience available today. Simply record WAV (BWF) and MP3 files to CompactFlash or Microdrives through balanced line inputs or built-in microphone preamps—then drag and drop recordings to your computer via high-speed USB 2.0 for immediate editing or Web posting. MicroTrack II is perfect for a wide variety of applications including field recording, capturing live shows, songwriting, education and more."

Industry updates

Thanks to Hayden for a number of industry updates:

The Khronos group has recently released its free open starndard OpenSL ES api (sound programming api for mobile devices). This looks really quite interesting as it appears quite comprehensive and spans all manner of devices.


Hayden did an interview with Nathan Charles from the Khronos group about the API, which sheds a lot more light on where they have got to and what they want to achieve.


The Interactive Audio Special Interest Group recently released its Mobile Audio Working Group report, which has many recommendations for manufacturers to better support audio capability in phones.
I've only just started reading this report, but it is quite interesting, and gives you some idea of why developing mobile music applications can prove so difficult and costly.

Lastly, SoniVox contributed their JET sound engine for the Google Open Handset Alliance Andriod operating system. Here's some of the things that mobile application and game developers can deploy using JET:

* Rhythm Matching Games
* Music Driven Games
* Real-time Mobile Musical Instruments
* Music Remixers
* Adaptive Music Scores
* Algorithmic song generation
* Synchronized music and sound effects with graphic events and gameplay
* Significant MIDI song compression -- hours of music in just a few Kbytes
* and more

So maybe Android will have more to offer for music than I thought.

Once again, thanks to Hayden for the updates. If you have news please email palm sounds.

Audio Box Micro Composer update


AudioBox is an all in one virtual recording studio and sound creation tool for your Pocket PC.

Key Features:
- Analog Synthesizer
- String Pad Synthesizer
- Digital Sampler
- Drum Machine
- 16 Channel Mixing Desk
- Real Time Digital Effects
- Score and Track Editing
- Real Time Device Automation

Update Description
Windows Mobile 5.0 Compatible Various Bug Fixes

Echo Nest is hiring

Brian Whitman is looking for a design lead for the echo nest. Are you up to the task? Interesting mention of iPhone music apps though.

Palmgear becomes PocketGear

Well, finally PalmGear and PocketGear have become one site. I hope it works out. So far I have to say I have not been impressed by the PocketGear layout and design. When I had a look for Palm apps today it sayd that there were 3,441 applications. So what happened to all the others? The old palmgear claimed to have over 28,000 !

Performance test 1


For ages I've had an idea about performing live with a range of difference PDAs / handheld devices. Today I decided to start to see if I could actually make something work using multiple non-linked devices to create something.

The sound doesn't really do it justice, but it is an interesting experiment (at least I think so anyway).

iPhone SDK already available?

According to electronista some developers are getting a rough version of the tools that will eventually be available.

More interesting are the claims that the SDK will effectively "sandbox" the application to ensure security.

TrakAx Mobile reviews appearing

The TrakAx site has an initial reviews round up post on their blog, including the Palm Sounds videos.

I'll be doing a more comprehensive review of TrakAx before the end of the year.

Well done 4Pockets!

Well done to 4Pockets for willing two of the Smartphone and Pocket PC Magazine awards.

The winning products are:
Virtual Recorder in the "Audio Recorder" category
and
Pocket RTA Professional in the "DSP/Sound Enhancement" Category.

Bill Muir, MD of Limelight said “We are extremely proud of these awards, not only because it recognises the excellence of our products but also because they have been nominated by the users of the products and judged by a team of some of the most renowned people in the Pocket PC and Smartphone industry. The whole team is delighted and we send ours thanks out to everyone who nominated and voted for us.”

Well done 4Pockets, keep up the great applications!

Brian Whitman releases Pushpin MIDI Music Synth for Game Boy Color


I have to say that I didn't expect Brian Whitman to release that. I do find it encouraging that maybe he'll even finish off what he started with the Capers environment / operating system for Palm OS. Now that would be really interesting.

sQeeQ



This is a little video of sQeeQ. A random pattern generator for Palm OS from the Sound Toys series from Palm Sounds. It can be downloaded from PalmGear.

TrakAx 2nd experiment



I am really getting to like this application. I made this video using TrakAx mobile. I shot a series of video clips and put them into TrakAx mobile. I added some music made with Griff and then edited the mix in "live" mode on TrakAx. It was really simple to do, and actually a lot of fun.

TrakAx allows you to perform simple editing on the clips, and then create your mix selecting what parts of each clip to include.

I am going to write up a complete review of this application soon with some screenshots and a lot more detail. Until then, I hope you enjoy this little video.

Harmonix Phase review


I have been playing this game for a few days now and I have to admit that it has grown on me. I must start by saying that I am not a massive games player. I think that I am becoming a casual game player, if that in fact makes sense. All that having been said I am starting to enjoy this, and the musical element is a major factor in that.


According to the Apple site "The notes’ placement on the path matches the beat of the music, but you encounter tighter bunches of them on higher difficulty settings. You also need to fill more stars before the next checkpoint during tougher games, leaving you little margin for error. The crowd goes wild every time you pass through a checkpoint, so keep them happy", and I'd go along with that more or less, although it is more pronounced on some songs.

I like the fact that the game is noticeably different depending on the song that you are playing to / with. It does feel like you are really doing something with the music on some tracks, and that was quite good fun. Having said all of that it isn't going to hold your attention for a long time. I'm guessing that for more serious gamers that me (and that doesn't take much) Phase will not hold much interest for very long.


Is it worth £3.99. Yes, I'd say it is. It has made a dull train journey more fun this week, and I expect that is the kind of use it will be put to going forward.

Is it a serious step towards interactive music on the iPod platforms as CDM has suggested? I don't know, at present I can't see it. I think it would be great if Harmonix made more music based games for iPods, and I'd certainly give them a try, but I would have thought that more developers would be looking to the iPod Touch / iPhone SDK in 2008 rather than focus on the older iPod platforms. Stiil, that's just my view.

Kaosillator in the UK



Kaosillator is now available for £119. I'd love to get my hands on one. If you've had a chance to play with one of these please let me know what it is like.

Pete Cole's blog and intermorphic

Just a quick note as I read Pete Cole's blog about the release of their two new apps (non mobile currently). I wish them all the best with their generative applications and hope to see mobile versions one day.

Musika (iPod game)



This game got very bad reviews on the iTunes store so I should really have know better than to buy it. But I did anyway, and I have to say that the reviews weren't wrong at all.

As far as games go it isn't going to win any awards. However, the graphics are very good and it seems to have been well put together.

As far as play is concerned it isn't going to keep your attention for long, and I mean not long at all. The focus of the game is to press the centre button on the iPod whenever you see a letter from the title of the track that is playing. So far so good. But if the track is "This" by Brian Eno, then it doesn't really make for an interesting game session.

Verdict: 1 out 10.

Really not worth the £3.99 at all.

Palm TX special offer on US palm store $199 !!!


Brighthand report that the Palm TX is on special offer at the US palm store for $199! That is amazingly cheap, especially for the palm store. I wonder if they'll do the same in the UK where it is currently £235 for a similar deal?

Circuit bent Leapfrog learning system


I guess that the leapfrog is a bit like a children's PDA, or am I stretching a point too far? Anyway, take a look...

Making Ringtones with TrakAx

Useful post on the TrakAx blog about using trakAx to make ringtones.

sQeeQ from Palm Sounds


Well, here we go again. sQeeQ is the latest in the Sound Toys series from Palm Sounds.


So, what does it do? Well, every button triggers a three note randomised sequence. The pitch, volume and duration are random. Press another button and you'll get a second three note sequence added to the current pattern and so on. Press reset and you the whole thing goes back to the beginning. Simple.

As ever, Sound Toys are freeware, feel free to download and enjoy.


I especially like the icon for this app.

Harmonix Phase


Here's an interesting article / interview with Harmonix producer Kasson Crooker. It could be interesting if they make more iPod games like this.

I bought this game myself the other day, so when I get a chance to play it a bit more I'll give you my opinions.

Gameboy live controller




GetLoFi has a great post on this foot controller for GB running Nanoloop. It looks very cool indeed, especially for life performances.

Kinetica shop online

Ok, this is a little bit off topic I guess, but of interest nonetheless. Kinetica have opened their own online shop. Very nice too, lots of strange things to buy.

Is there still life in Griff?

The other day I got an email from Griff, It was very pleasant, it collated a load of resources into one place, which was very useful.

So today I decided to visit the forum again, although there hasn't been much going on there for a while. So I was interested to find this post about the iPhone and Android.

Could we see a new Griff on the iPhone in 2008?

livepa: First look at Kaossilator

Check out Livepa: for an interesting video on the Kaossilator.

TrakAx 1st experiment



This is the first thing I've made with TrakAx Mobile, and it is really growing on me. The app is truly amazing. This short film was made with some images I created using NinerPaint (Palm OS), and Music using Bhajis Loops (Palm OS) combined using fades and mixing in TrakAx. It was really easy to make and rendered quickly on my Dell Axim.

I've just started playing with mixing video too. When I've got something more complex I'll post that too, and a full review when I get used to the app.

Why is Android important?


Well, if nothing else then how about the $10 million in funding for developers?

Here's what Brighthand has to say:

"... To give people more incentive to create software for the Android platform, Google has launched the Android Developer Challenge, which will provide $10 million in awards for great outstanding applications. The award money will be distributed equally between two phases.

Android Developer Challenge I will run from January 2 through March 3, 2008. The 50 most promising entries received will each receive a $25,000 award to fund further development. Those selected will then be eligible for even greater recognition via ten $275,000 awards and ten $100,000 awards.... "


15% off Smartphone apps at Handango

Handango have had a bit of a makeover and as a result have a 15% sale on smartphone apps.

TrakAx now available for Windows Mobile

I have been waiting for this application for a while, and now that it has arrived it is absolutely worth the wait. I've only had a very short time to try it out, but so far it is very impressive indeed.

The TrakAx interface is well designed and clean. The functionality is straightforward to access and easy to figure out (I printed out the manual / guide but haven't read it yet). I haven't started to really delve into the features as yet, but I'm looking forward to that.


I am really looking forward to getting to grips with this application in more depth, and I hope to do just that at the weekend, so I'll post again on it then. I plan to put up some work that is actually made with TrakAx Mobile to give you a taste for what it can do, and I think that what it can do is going to be quite amazing.


More on TrakAx Mobile soon.

Digital Pen Studio

Thanks very much to Peter for sending in this post from AudioLemon.

Palm VM for Nokia Tablet

Lots of sites and blogs have this story aboue the Access Garnet Virtual Machine for Nokia Internet Tablets.


So now you can use palm applications on Nokia, Windows Mobile, and soon on Symbian. Oh yes, and on Palm devices too!


The Garnet VM also supports hotsync and networking, which is more than Styletap, and is quite impressive.

Music Thing on Pixilang

Thanks to music thing for picking up on the pixilang story, it'll be interesting to see what kind of applets get produced.

If you make any do send details / pictures / video to palm dot sounds at mac dot com.

Video coming to iPhone?

MacRumors has in interesting rumour that video recording will be coming to the iPhone. Could be interesting, I wonder what else Apple have up their sleeves?

Pixilang examples

I posted on Pixilang a few days ago. Well I got around to trying some of the examples yesterday. I took some video of it which you might be interested in.



The example files that are packaged in the download show a wide variety of the capabilities of the language, so I shall be giving it a go and hopefully making some of my own soon.

Not 1 but 2 of Vince Clarke's Roland PMA-5's !


These two arrived on eBay today, each priced at £40 (initially). So why did Vince Clarke have 2 PMA-5's then? I don't know, but I would. Take a look for yourself Roland PMA5 (1) Roland PMA5 (2).

Modified Toy Orchestra

I'm sure I've mentioned the Modified Toy Orchestra before. They are the brain child of Brian Duffy, also behind the ZX Spectrum Orchestra.

Anyway, I went to see them last night at the Britsh Library at an event put on by The Future of Sound which is rum by Martyn Ware (of Heaven 17 and Human league fame).

It was an excellent event, and watching the Modified Toy Orchestra perform gave me renewed inspiration for a PDA or handheld performance.

I hope to put up some pictures and video from the event over the next few days, but in the meantime I thought you might enjoy seeing their version of Pocket Calculator (found on YouTube).

Pixilang version 1.2 now with sound synthesis


Thanks to Alex Zolotov (NightRadio) for this update on Pixilang. As far as I can remember the previous version could play XM and MOD format music, but the latest version adds a range of sound synthesis options as well.

Here's the details of the sound and music functions in 1.2. Full documentation is available at the Pixilang site.

Music:
load_music (filename) - load music in XM or MOD format
play_music
pause_music
stop_music
music_volume (volume) - set music volume (from 0 to 255)
get_music_pattern
get_music_position

Sound:
send_sound (sound_pixi,freq,channels,loop) - send sound_pixi (pixi-container with some piece of sound) to global sound buffer. freq - sampling frequency of selected piece of sound. channels - number of channels (1 - mono, 2 - stereo). loop - remove selected piece of sound from global sound buffer after playing or not? If loop = 1, then selected piece of sound will be playing infinitely. Return value of this command is the ID of selected piece of sound in the glabal sound buffer. send_sound_to (sound_id,sound_pixi,freq,channels,loop) - the same as previous command, but position (buffer_id) in the global sound buffer setting manually.

Example:
sound_id = send_sound( some_sound, 44100, 2, 0 )
send_sound_to( sound_id, new_sound, 44100, 2, 0 ) //Overwrite some_sound with new_sound
get_sound_status (sound_id) - get current playing position in selected sound.

Example:
sound_id = send_sound(sound,44100,2,0)
position = get_sound_status( sound_id )
sound_volume (volume) - set sound volume (from 0 to 256)

Examples. Creation of 8-bit sound:
snd = new_string( 256 ) //Sound size is 256 samples
//Amplitude in 8bit sound is a value from -127 to 127
send_sound( snd, 44100, 1, 1 )

Creation of 32-bit sound:
snd = new_array( 256 )
//Amplitude in 32bit sound is a value from -32767 to 32767
send_sound( snd, 44100, 1, 1 )


TuneStudio price up to $399 !


I was checking the Belkin site as I do from time to time, and noticed that the only thing that had changed on the TuneStudio page was the price. It is now listed at $399.99. Personally I feel that's really too high for this kind of device. The price has steadily risen since it was originally announced, and although it was promised for a summer 2007 launch, I doubt it will even make it for Christmas this year.

A shame I think as it did have some potential and sparked a lot of debate about the iPod as a platform.

Tunewear iPod Recorder


A very nice looking iPod recorder for 5th generation iPods from Tunewear, and it includes line in recording too.

CDM: First steps to interactive music on the iPod?


CDM has an interesting take on the "Phase" game for iPods, and sees it as a first step or possible first step to interactive music on the iPod platforms.

Phase: iPod Music Game


Phase is a new iPod music game. Here's what iLounge has to say about it:

"It's unusual to see Apple note that one of the major reasons for an iTunes update is to add features to support a game, but MTV Networks/Viacom's Phase ($5) was singled out for such attention in iTunes 7.5. Developed by Harmonix, makers of popular rhythm games for full-fledged game consoles, the 67.5MB title carries the tagline "your music is the game," and creates levels based on the songs you add to a special iTunes playlist called Phase Music. Once you've selected a song, a 3-D road appears on the screen, with discs and dots floating towards you. Your goal is to tap the Click Wheel's left, center, and right buttons to match the current positions of discs that are moving towards the bottom of the screen, and slide your finger on the Click Wheel to catch "flowing sweeps" of dots that appear inbetween the discs. The more discs and dots you catch, the better you do, and the better your chance of making it through each of the checkpoints in a given song/level. Make it through all of the checkpoints and you win the level. The screenshots here show the game frozen in time, as well as how it looks in motion."

Here are some more screen shots:


For £3.99 I might just as well give it a go I suppose.


Is chip music dead?

Micro-Scale thinks not, but what do you think?

Apple Tablet?

AppleInsider has claims of an OSX based tablet. I do like these rumours coming around, especially about OSX handhelds, a new series of Newtons, etc etc... All good fun.

Bacterium



I thought I'd post this short video of Bacterium (the Bhajis Garden Synth project) before I start tinkering with the code. I won't post anything else on Bacterium until I've got something worth downloading.

PalmGear is joining PocketGear

Well, it makes a lot of sense I guess. Now there will just be PocketGear and Handango, and that's it really.

Interesting Pacemaker views


The "learn how to DJ" blog isn't one I've read before, this is an interesting view on the Pacemaker DJ device.

Freeware Wav recorder for Palm OS: SoundRec


I spotted this freeware sound recorder on PalmGear today. Maybe worth it if you're looking for a way to record stuff quickly (and freely).

Android from Google...

Google announces that it is developing an open source OS for mobile devices (phones essentially). What will this mean for mobile music? Who knows at this point, They say that the first devices supporting it will appear in the second half of next year.

Cool name for an OS though.

Pacemaker and Madplayer


I was thinking the other day about proprietory devices and how good they can be but also how difficult to sustain, and then I thought about Pacemaker and Madplayer. Different end uses, but in some ways similar concepts behind them both.

Madplayer of course is discontinued, and Pacemaker hasn't arrived as yet, but I do wonder how Pacemaker will do as a proprietory bit of hardware with its own software too?


Another screens environment update

I've been watching this blog for so long, and I keep on hoping that something will come out of it. I think one day it will, I really do, and this kind of comment on the blog keeps me looking forward to screens and what it might bring for the palm community.

"BTW: About the spaces feature in MacOSX idea, I expect these kind of features to be included in Screens in its future but I doubt in the 1st version. Thanks."

Guy Fawkes


As tomorrow is Guy Fawkes Night in the UK I thought I'd post this video again, especially as it was made on PDAs.

D-Pod 1.3 and ranDRUM 1.1

D-Pod version 1.3 is now available for download from Palmgear if you are interested in it.


The only thing that I've added to it is the ability for it to receive a pattern from ranDRUM 1.1. Which is also available. ranDRUM now has a new button that will take the current pattern in ranDRUM and then send it to D-Pod. ranDRUM closes and D-Pod opens up.


I thought it would be a fun feature to add in. I hope you enjoy it.