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Mapping Eve Online to music with Nodal

19 September 2011 Leave a comment

The Kor-Azor sector

The Lonetrek sector

The maps from Eve Strategic Maps where used as a basis for mapping the systems to Nodal nodes. The pitch was set be security level;. In the case of Kor-Azor the installations modified the basic pitch. In the Lonetrek project each installation added a note upwards in the scale. Velocity was set roughly from the amount of asteroids and moons. There is not as much movement in the music and that would entail different pitch choices and even using the paths to modify CC values.

This was the second method thought of  to create music from Eve Online maps. The first idea was to convert Eve system data to Nodal files. Eve system data can be downloaded as SQLite files. These files can be viewed in the Base application and exported as XML.

An Nodal node in pList is :

 <key>35</key>
            <dict>
                <key>ContainerType</key>
                <string>StrDict</string>
                <key>DurationList</key>
                <string>100%</string>
                <key>TickPos</key>
                <string>{-2372832, -776160}</string>
                <key>Type</key>
                <string>Node</string>
                <key>ArcIdentifiers</key>
                <dict>
                    <key>ContainerType</key>
                    <string>IntDict</string>
                    <key>41</key>
                    <integer>0</integer>
                    <key>44</key>
                    <integer>1</integer>
                </dict>
                <key>VelocityList</key>
                <string>24</string>
                <key>PitchList</key>
                <string>C4</string>
                <key>SignallingMethod</key>
                <string>Random</string>
                <key>ArcUsageList</key>
                <string>41=1,44=1</string>
            </dict>

and from an XML export of the Eve systems table:

<mapsolarsystems>
	<regionID>10000001</regionID>
	<constellationID>20000001</constellationID>
	<solarSystemID>30000001</solarSystemID>
	<solarSystemName>Tanoo</solarSystemName>
	<x>-8.85107925999806e+16</x>
	<y>4.23694439668789e+16</y>
	<z>4.45135253464797e+16</z>
	<xMin>-8.85119031484906e+16</xMin>
	<xMax>-8.85092564717606e+16</xMax>
	<yMin>4.23692979274891e+16</yMin>
	<yMax>4.23696457492639e+16</yMax>
	<zMin>4.45130363558928e+16</zMin>
	<zMax>4.45141116897829e+16</zMax>
	<luminosity>0.01575</luminosity>
	<border>1</border>
	<fringe>0</fringe>
	<corridor>0</corridor>
	<hub>1</hub>
	<international>1</international>
	<regional>1</regional>
	<constellation>1</constellation>
	<security>0.858324068848468</security>
	<factionID>NULL</factionID>
	<radius>1323338364984.0</radius>
	<sunTypeID>3802</sunTypeID>
	<securityClass>B</securityClass>
</mapsolarsystems>

But there are a lot of programming issues which are beyond me such as mapping the 7000+ 3D Eve system co-ordinates to Nodal 2D.

This is using Nodal 1.7. Nodal 1.8 has been released and this may present some new ideas.

 


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Categories: music Tags: ,

Access Virus Snow with Live, Numerology and Nodal

14 June 2011 Leave a comment

Access Virus SnowAfter some consideration and watching many videos I decided to get the Access Virus Snow. (Awave in South Yarra sold the unit. I can recommend the store and they are keen to get you trying the many synths on display.) While the most expensive of the synths I considered, the Virus just looked the most comprehensive and came with software integration. For what I can use it for and afford the Snow was the best option in the Access range.

I really like the sound and the variety. The setup documentation is a bit scattered in various guides, song files, and manuals but once I grasped the 4 channels to 1 instance of the Snow it worked. I use the MOTU Ultralite for my soundcard rather than the Virus because there are more routing options. The documentation also came with a guide by Harold Scarr on “Programming Analogue Synths” which is good starting point for Virus programming. I just wish they had updated it for the latest Virus iterations.

Ableton Live is my preferred standard DAW because all the connections are obvious. There are is a MIDI track for each of the 4 parts which send their MIDI to different MIDI channels (though they could be the same) in a track which contains the plugin.

Five12’s Numerology can run the Virus plug in. What you need to do is have four note generators each on a different channel and one AU plug-in for the Virus. You need to manually connect a wire from the MIDI out of the generators to the MIDI in of the plug in.

Nodal can send the notes over a IAC connection to the Virus with its instruments to the four channels but I find it easier to use Live as a central router for MIDI and as a host for the Virus AU. Speaking of Nodal I am playing around with drum patterns like the Amen Brother break to see how Nodal can work at creating standard patterns and then being a starting point for variations. It works in a stardard file but I failed to get MIDI triggering of instruments in separate Nodal files which is said to be possible.

Categories: music Tags: , ,

Connecting Reason/Record to Nodal

23 May 2011 Leave a comment

This is for Mac OS (This should be similar for Windows but there will a different procedure to create a MIDI device.)

This applies broadly to other software which generates MIDI events.
(This is how I have got it to work. If you know of easier ways please let me know.)

Step 0 is creating as IAC device in the MIDI window of the Utilities/AudioMidi.app

Propellerhead’s Reason/Record (R/R) distinguish between normal hardware and software inputing MIDI events.

Nominal Hardware – all channel event to one R/R instrument

In R/R there is a preference category Keyboard and Control Services in which hardware keyboards and control surfaces are detected or specified. If you want to add a new device select the Add button then select the Manufacturer and then a specified keyboard.

Step 1. To use Nodal in this role first select Select “MIDI Control Keyboard ” (There is a “Multi Channel Control Keyboard” option but in my tests there is no advantage in selecting this. The manual does not mention this option. )

  • 1.1 Rename this something relevant like “NODAL”
  • 1.2 MIDI Input will be one of the buses created in the IAC device.
  • 1.3 Make sure the “Use with Record” box is ticked.

Step 2. Select an instrument in the Arrange section of R/R. This is the instrument to which all MIDI events will be sent. All channels. So if you have a Nodal page with multiple instruments to multiple channels all the MIDI notes will go here. Which is probably not want you want. However you could separately go through each Nodal channel in turn and record the MIDI to different selected instruments.

(Addition note for NI Maschine. this hardware in not recognised by R/R)

Software – for multiple channels
This is not really recommend by Propellerheads but is usable.

Step 1. In R/R preferences select Advanced Control. You can connect up to four R/R buses up to separate IAC buses. In general you only need the first.

  • 1.1 You can also select an external clock sync.

Step 2. In the R/R rack select the “Advance MIDI button”. This will show you the R/R bus and the IAC connected bus. Each separate channel can be assigned to a seperate instrument. This will get the sound from multi instrument playing but does not record the MIDI events. You can record the audio if you have Record.
(This does not preclude having Nodal as a hardware device at the same time.)

Step 3. (Assuming Record) Each instrument has an associated Mix channel with the same name. Click the disclosure triangle to the left of the coloured name. This will show more of the VU meter. There is a small button now showing underneath the VU meter labelled “Rec Source”. Click this to be able to record the source from this channel to Audio channel

Step 4. Create an Audio Channel, possibly one for each instrument. Click it’s disclosure triangle to select the source. Click the Audio Input triangle. Select stereo and select the the name of the Mix channel. (You could use mono and left channel if the instrument is mono.)

Step 5. Arm tracks and select Record. Shift+click to arm multiple audio channel. Click Record and click Nodal start and you should see waveform appearing on correct R/R channels.

Rewire – if you have a Rewire Host then this is the better. Ableton Live has the most transparent implementation.
That described on the Propellerheads site and in the manuals. (See: http://www.propellerheads.se/substance/rewirehelp/index.cfm )

Categories: music Tags: ,

Chords with Nodal

23 May 2011 Leave a comment
Nodal Chords

Exercise from Ch. 2 of “Composing Music” wanted a chord progression. A single path chord progression could be done but that would not take advantage of the alternative routes in Nodal. There is a bit of difficulty in that the root note needs to send out parallel signals to the others in the triad. This would also mean a parallel sending of signals to subsequent chords which would have many chords simultaneously firing rather than a progression.

The chord itself is a group of 3 modes connected by wormholes. It makes it easier if you use relative note specification e.g. node 1 D3, node 2 +3, node 3 +7. There is one allowed additional edge which is connected to a mute sequentially firing node. This mute node can have multiple edges to other chords which creates the variety of pathways.

The multiple pathways do make it more difficult to follow the basic rules for diatonic chord progressions. It could be solved like the travelling salesman graph type of problem.

Categories: music Tags:

The Storm project with Nodal

17 May 2011 Leave a comment

This is the starting structure of a Nodal project I am working on. The idea came to me as I watched the Melbourne Storm rugby league club winning a grand final. There is a starting action, a series of up to six actions which can be ended after any one of the actions and the an ending action which goes back to a starting action. In league it could be a kick off followed by some tackles which end in a score or fumble of turnover. The process then restarts. Each of the types of actions has a number of options relevant to that action. It is note a complete model in music of a rugby league game but just a starting idea to try out different musical structures.

Nodal makes it easy to visualise and construct these structures. I was going to post the music but it does not sound right. I need to work on the notes within the actions and the instrumentation.

Categories: music Tags:

Imperial Flute

17 May 2011 Leave a comment

Imperial flute initial

This is an early Nodal composition based on the “Imperial flute” exercise in “Composing Music” by William Russo. You can only use E, G, A, or B in any order with the 5/4 rhythm as 1/4, 1/4, 1/4, 1/2 notes.

The image to the left is the first iteration to set the rhythm. The notes contain notes in different amounts and combinations such e3, g3, a3, b3 or a3, b3, or a3, a3, g3, b3, b3. The velocity is values around 64.

Different notes will sound as the song plays from node to node. One advantage with Nodal is that non linear sections can be drawn in with ease and random paths can be specified. In this case the final version of the song is below. I liked the way the shape developed. Nodal reminds me a lot of the Japanese game of Go. It is not just the obvious similarities with the grid and nodes but that the rules are not complicated  yet it can yield complex results. Nodal also feels like a logical game when laying out the nodes and lines.

Imperial flute

 Nodal is a music composition program which uses nodes and lines for the description and generation of music. You can get more information and download Nodal at: http://www.csse.monash.edu.au/~cema/nodal/

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