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Open Stage Control (Tutorial) - An alternative to Lemur and TouchOSC

Manuel M.

New Member
Now that's exciting news indeed, looking forward to see what you've come up with. I've currently put my prototype articulation mapper on hold and focused on adding different features such as a primitive track visibility editor inside of OSC, search features and more. Furthermore I've experimented with different base colors along with the possibility of giving users a simple way of skinning the base GUI. I will later experiment with more color variations for different widget types and purposes, i.e. a green play button. See the attached images below for visual demonstrations.


On a different note, today I realized that the missing EuCon SDK files were installed on my system albeit inside a custom directory not mentioned in the manual. It seems like the SDK do in fact contain all the relevant header files needed to create a functional application for non-commercial purposes. @tpoots and other programmers with knowledge in C++ may be very interested in having a closer look at the SDK as it might solve many of our issues in a much more convenient manner.
Man, I really like the clean and sleak look of it and am excited about the Search function.
Another thing I have been looking for and already reached out to some of the coding-genius minds here is, you think there is a possibility to be able to switch articulations while editing and NOT while recording? So basically replacing the tedious task of (in Cubase‘ Key Editor) selecting a bunch of midi-notes, opening the drop-down menu at the top of the Key Editor, searching for the desired articulation within a that endless list VSL instruments present you with, to then select that articulation. Or, drawing them in, in the Articulations Lane in the bottom of the Key Editor. It would be really great if this was possible with the touch controller, the articulations nicely being layed out in front of you and you just need to tap the appropriate articulation.
 

RaztoR

Composer
Man, I really like the clean and sleak look of it and am excited about the Search function.
Another thing I have been looking for and already reached out to some of the coding-genius minds here is, you think there is a possibility to be able to switch articulations while editing and NOT while recording? So basically replacing the tedious task of (in Cubase‘ Key Editor) selecting a bunch of midi-notes, opening the drop-down menu at the top of the Key Editor, searching for the desired articulation within a that endless list VSL instruments present you with, to then select that articulation. Or, drawing them in, in the Articulations Lane in the bottom of the Key Editor. It would be really great if this was possible with the touch controller, the articulations nicely being layed out in front of you and you just need to tap the appropriate articulation.
That is precisely what I have in mind for my own articulation mapper. The main problem for me is not about sending a program change message from OSC to Cubase as an example. That will be relatively easy to implement. The main problem for me is about developing a "convenient" solution to populate the screen with the appropriate articulations; a solution that will mostly take care of itself once it has been implemented. Because of how tedious it can be to maintain or update such a system, I have been looking into solutions that does not rely on Cubase's midi-send and/or generic remote for every MIDI-channel or instrument track. EuCon is the only ethernet-based protocol that comes to mind that would help circumvent MIDI limitations in tandem with being an applicable protocol for DAWs like Cubase, Digital Performer, Logic and Reaper.

I would have been all for making an open Ethernet protocol standard for control surfaces, synths and similar. But such notions will be fruitless if there's no incentive or priority from the consumers, DAW- and instrument-developers. Still, perhaps MIDI 2.0 will one day come to our aids for such endeavours. Again that's wishful thinking on my end; considering how slow certain creative industries are when it comes to adopting new standards on a wider scale. Technical debt 101.
 

Manuel M.

New Member
Yep, it's quite simple (even for me as someone with no coding skills) to send out Program Change messages or NoteOns. Especially with the help of @tpoots detailed comments in his template files he published on GitHub and his very clean way of writing, even I am somewhat able to understand what is going on there and might take a risk to play around with it. So far this whole touch controller thing was nothing but despair to me because I simply lack the necessary skills and that frustrates the sh*t out of me. I'd love to be able to get things working and bend them until I see them fit but seriously, there is just no way for me achieving any reasonable results in a forseeable future to aid me in what I need such a controller for in the first place... that is: writing music more efficiently and faster. So my hope really is on you guys here :emoji_sweat_smile: I've been quietly following this thread for some weeks now and still don't feel like I can contribute anything of help to this community effort other than cheering you guys and asking for additional functions :emoji_grimacing: It's amazing to see what @jononotbono has come up with and same counts true for @marcodistefano's Flow+. Still, this "transformer-trick" thing only is partially convincing to me as it definitely has it's flats in flexibility, is somewhat fragile and very tedious to maintain, as you've already stated. I guess anything expression map related will be a PITA until Steinberg updates their expression map-handling-system, after all.
@mrmiller's Patchboard really is superior in terms of integration and flexibility. I reached out to him earlier this week and basically asked the same thing with the "possibility of on-screen articulation switching while editing" since I'm considering to try Patchboard. He didn't reply yet, so I don't know if Patchboard is capable of doing that. However, Patchboard is utilizing EuCon and detects tracks based on their name and not on a midi-transformer. So he might be able to answer some of the EuCon legal concerns here as well.
Hmm... Well, I guess it doesn't really make sense to wait for the DAW-developers to introduce MIDI 2.0 and whatnot else. I can't remember when I first heard about MIDI 2.0 but it definitely seems like very long ago. However, MIDI is still one of the very few standards DAW-devs have agreed upon. So you probably have to develop the controller independently of DAW-developments if this endeavor is supposed to be leading somewhere in a somewhat forseeable future and thankfully accept any helpful developments happening on the DAW-end side :emoji_sweat_smile: Or maybe that is just my impatience speaking to finally have some working touch controller :emoji_joy::emoji_joy:
 

Drjay

Active Member
So basically replacing the tedious task of (in Cubase‘ Key Editor) selecting a bunch of midi-notes, opening the drop-down menu at the top of the Key Editor, searching for the desired articulation within a that endless list VSL instruments present you with, to then select that articulation. Or, drawing them in, in the Articulations Lane in the bottom of the Key Editor
Good question. When I tried to insert or change articulations in Cubase step edit mode, it always failed. It seems the only ways to change articulations are the ones you described. I would be glad, if someone could prove me wrong. Of course you change the articulations while recording but this would mean you‘d have to go through every part just record the articulations in real time.
 

Manuel M.

New Member
Good question. When I tried to insert or change articulations in Cubase step edit mode, it always failed. It seems the only ways to change articulations are the ones you described. I would be glad, if someone could prove me wrong. Of course you change the articulations while recording but this would mean you‘d have to go through every part just record the articulations in real time.
Yeah, but that is certainly not what I imagine 21st century interactive touch screen porn to be. Having it all in front of you and then still having to go back to that old mouse and scroll through drop down menus is an absolute let down and sooo unsexy. 🤣🤣

I know the feeling 😂
Ha, at least you got something to work on that gives you the feeling of „being in charge“ 😜 So how are you doing and progressing, anyways? 😊
 

jononotbono

Luke Johnson
Ha, at least you got something to work on that gives you the feeling of „being in charge“ 😜 So how are you doing and progressing, anyways? 😊
That's a good question.

Currently upgrading all faders. Basically I thought the faders were "done" and then I realized how shambolic I actually am. The different types of faders are now getting treatment so...

All audio faders (which include Selected track, Control Room, Listen, Click and Sends) now show a db value. They showed nothing before. Which is about as useful as a Rabbit with no teeth.

All CC faders - They show CC value.

All Mic Position Faders (technically these are CC faders) were showing CC value (like the CC faders) however, the grave mistake here was not actually making them display db because thats what Mic Positions are valued at. So the problem here is scaling the CC value and translating this to show db.

Then controller faders (which are also CC faders) that are for library controls (time stretch, reverb, - anything other than the CC faders that are Mod, Exp, Vib - the commonly used "performance" CCs)... which don't really require any value read out because barely any library shows a value. For example, load up a SPitfire library and see what value a Time Stretch controller shows... Nothing. Except physically being left and right.

Then on top of all that, it dawned on me that all of these faders that show db are currently set to +6db. Cubase allows the user to set their project to +6db and +12db. What happens if someone uses +12db and these faders are designed at +6db? They become utterly useless. So...

Now the faders will have a switch where you can instantly change their ranges and value to be either +6db or +12db and then everyone is happy.

Of course, all faders have the option to instantly tap and change the names/scribble strips. Select different Midi channels (useful for sending to outboard gear). Change the colour of the faders. And instantly change the CC value (excluding audio faders that are assigned to Generic Remotes - Audio and Sends).

There's also an auto save system so if the user changes any value, name, colour, fader position, everything will be remembered without having to save anything as its done for you.

My modesty prevents me from saying this but I've heard the JnB Controller has had a lot of thought put into a few things.

There's loads of other shit I'm busy with but honestly, all I can say is, if you are embarking on a journey to make a custom touch controller... pack your lunch because you're gonna be spending a lot of time down in the HOLE. Lets not even get started with expression map and articulation systems!
😂
 
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Manuel M.

New Member
Wow, sounds absolutely awesome 😃 I suppose you’re not up for any predictions on when you are going to release that beast of a controller, aren‘t ya? 😜

Regarding the Time Stretch. As I mentioned on Discord. I have Time Stretch for libraries like Spitfire and VSL assigned to Pitch Bend since I don’t need it for anything else and it naturally snaps back to middle state. That way I am always with „original speed“ when I don’t use time stretching.

But man, this sounds so promising!! I really wish I could just ramble away with it 😅

EDIT: Nope, I absolutely do not plan to go on that journey. I really have to admit that I am lacking the skills and that getting myself acquainted with all of that is beyond what I want. There’s people like you, @Drjay, @RaztoR and before mentioned folks who really are into this and know what they are doing. I shamelessly acknowledge that and am happy to be a customer… with feature requests 😜🤣
 
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jononotbono

Luke Johnson
Wow, sounds absolutely awesome 😃
It's not. Its beyond the beyondness of all things 😂
I suppose you’re not up for any predictions on when you are going to release that beast of a controller, aren‘t ya? 😜
I studied Jasper Blunk's business strategy and I can only say that the Jono not Bono Cubase Touch Controller will be released when it is released.
And of course when Jasper says so.
Regarding the Time Stretch. As I mentioned on Discord.
What Discord? Would love to join. Unless you're talking about my Discord. Of which, I'd like to formally and finally welcome you! 😂
I have Time Stretch for libraries like Spitfire and VSL assigned to Pitch Bend since I don’t need it for anything else and it naturally snaps back to middle state. That way I am always with „original speed“ when I don’t use time stretching.
Pitchbend in the JnB Controller... bends pitch. You won't be disappointed 😘

with feature requests 😜🤣
Spit it (THEM) out then... 😂
 
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RaztoR

Composer

Update: Been experimenting with different types of layout designs and controller functionalities if I keep it simple. While it is far from finished, you can still get an idea as to what the end result might be for this particular feature. I still need to figure out a convenient way to populate each column and create a database that OSC will fetch relevant data from.

I have a few ideas as how one can make the columns more customizable for convenience. Like a settings menu where you can swap, hide or add different buttons whenever you press one of the cogwheel/edit buttons illustrated above. A feature to be considered for another time. Furthermore I will make sure that the shared icons in use are more consistent across the application. Currently you can see that the "libraries" button on the left has a book icon while the corresponding "library search" widget has a bookshelf. That's something that I'll update later.
 
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Manaberry

Manaberry

Senior Member
Thread starter
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You guys are doing so many cool stuff with OSC.
Should I be ashamed of not having updated my template for over a year now? Haha
 

ajsealy

New Member
@jononotbono You should try the circular menu! Very useful to save room on your template!
I was trying to get this going to set my tools to, but I dont understand how to then assign each value within the menu to select the tools (my daw is cubase)

I can't use the "preArgs" to assign what midi channel and CC value because that would link it to the widget itself - not the different menu options within it.

I asked JE on the OSC forums but similar to the documentation, the help and support, while extremely valuable, doesnt seem to be geared toward those with little to no scripting experience.

I certainly COULD make a button widget for each tool I'm trying to assign, but that seems so inefficient. How do I assign the contents of a switch/circular menu in OSC to the desired tools (or anything) in my daw?
 

Drjay

Active Member
I was trying to get this going to set my tools to, but I dont understand how to then assign each value within the menu to select the tools (my daw is cubase)

I can't use the "preArgs" to assign what midi channel and CC value because that would link it to the widget itself - not the different menu options within it.

I asked JE on the OSC forums but similar to the documentation, the help and support, while extremely valuable, doesnt seem to be geared toward those with little to no scripting experience.

I certainly COULD make a button widget for each tool I'm trying to assign, but that seems so inefficient. How do I assign the contents of a switch/circular menu in OSC to the desired tools (or anything) in my daw?
I had a look at your post on the OSC forum. The answer is perfectly fine. You could do differently, but every solution will require scripting.
 

Drjay

Active Member
Every time I think, my controller is almost finished, something new comes round the corner.
OSC version 1.12 got a canvas widget! :) :elephant:
Another couple of 'lost' weekends and maybe sleepless nights ;)
 
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