[chuck-users] Using typing keyboard for playing

Hans Aberg haberg at math.su.se
Wed Apr 15 09:04:54 EDT 2009

On 15 Apr 2009, at 14:19, Kassen wrote:

>> I have used it in Scala for about a year, mostly in E31 (close to  
>> Renaissance extended meantone).
> It's not very urgent, more like a future idea for a "luxury" feature  
> but I think it would be interesting to be able to load Scala files  
> and have those affect Std.mtof().

Scala is a bit more MIDI oriented, and is quite difficult to develop  
ones own tunings with (notation systems are hardwired), though of  
course very useful for many microtonal tasks.

> That function is one of the few bits in ChucK that makes any  
> assumptions about "what music is". Of course we are all free to  
> develop our own scales and tunings; I'm still happy with integer  
> multiples of 200Hz.

The (generalized) diatonic pitch system I use the set of pitches p M +  
q m, where m (resp. M) is a choice minor (resp. minor) second, and p,  
q runs through all integers. It blends well with other music if one  
sets A = 440 Hz. The Pythagorean tuning is close to E53 and sets m =  
4, M = 9; the Renaissance meantone is close to E31 and set m = 3, M = 5.

The layout is
       C#  D#  E#
     C   D   E   F#  G#  A#  B#
   Cb  Db  Eb  F   G   A   B
             Fb  Gb  Ab  Bb  C'
You might check that transposition takes place by translation. Play C  
major, and see that the fingering is the same as on a piano keyboard.  
Then it is the same in all other major keys: each scale needs only one  
fingering, independent of key. Same for chords.

>> The new Apple flat mini-keyboard (with USB chord) is good for this  
>> purpose. Rapid melodic movements and ornaments are possible :-).
> Keyboards matter; both the tactile feel and "ghosting" are  
> important, IMHO. I think it's a great shame that so many companies  
> cut so many corners there these days. Good to hear you found one you  
> like, ...

This the best I have tried so far, trying some other Apple keyboards  
of older vintage before. Typing keyboards often have the problem of a  
distinct touchpoint, but this keyboard has instead a firm and rather  
short key movement, more like favored on accordions, for example.

> ...USB "chords" sound especially interesting. :¬p
> Sorry to poke fun at your typo; I just imagined what a USB chord  
> would be like.

The chord-less ones may have a small delay in them. That is anyway the  
case of joysticks. Not good for music.

>> Hope, so too :-). I have something to go for.
> I think the Smelt one and the one in /examples/ are quite  
> comparable. The Hid interface is quite pleasant to work with, there  
> will be lots of "magic numbers" but the code for the device  
> abstraction is very readable.

The Smelt files kb.ck and kb-fret.ck have enough info in them that it  
might be possible to for me to figure it out. But your suggestion may  
be of help, too.


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