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 Forum index » DIY Hardware and Software » ChucK programming language
ChucK Guitar Workstation
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Stream Operator


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 1:45 am    Post subject: ChucK Guitar Workstation
Subject description: Setting up a Chucktacular Rockstation
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I'm setting up a guitar entertainment center based on ChucK. The photo below shows the very earlist beginnings of the setup. The computer is ten years old and the scope is probably from the 70's. Although giving up on electronics as a hobby, I feel compelled to just break out the guitar signal and put it on the scope. Who knows, maybe I'll get inspiration to do more with it. Anyway, just getting things set up and thought I'd share.


Guitar_Station1.jpg
 Description:
Just getting things in place...
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Guitar_Station1.jpg



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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 2:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Cool!

Hey... what are your plans for ChucKing the guitar?

Are you going to build a ChucK app that can do Line 6 Pod style efx and amp models and such?

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Kassen
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hey! What's in the arcade cabinet? You have a cab?!!! Can I be your friend?
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 6:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Kassen and elektro80, come on over and let's Rock! That's a genuine 1981 Ms. Pac Man machine, no quarters and plenty of classic arcade fun! I have it set up with the alternate mazes chip, which includes my favorite level which I call "Orange Velvet" cause that's what it looks like. Once I even made it through invisible level. Although invisible level appears fairly early on that chip, you get an extra feeling of Arcade-Godliness for completing any level that has "invisible" as it's main characteristic.

I plan to have similar Rock-Godliness moments jamming with my ChucK-enhanced guitar setup, elektro80. By now Kassen's read it three times over since I've been posting all over electro-music.com about the idea for a few weeks now, but if you haven't chanced across it in another post I'll explain.

I plan to do exactly as you suggest. Though not overly familiar with Line 6's goodies, the plan is to separate the strings and the identify the notes with software in ChucK's mind. Plus I'm setting up an accelerometer based motion sensor so that ChucK can know in real time the approximate XYZ position and spherical orientation of the guitar. Although I'm an inexperienced guitar novice, I plan to enhance the rock-like enjoyment of the guitar with my own custom software, and to make it be readily used by others to share the fun.

Already I've written an application that processes guitar audio that I created with my Guitar Lab software. It has a delay/feedback effect under mouse control, and I really enjoyed varying the effect in 2D using the mouse. It was way better than settings or even pots/sliders because of the dynamic effects that occur due to the transient nature of the control. It made crunchy, weird grinding noises mixed in with some feedback wailing and stuff like that. I'm sure 6 degrees of guitar motion tracking freedom will be even way more fun than that 2 degrees of freedom experience was!

I'll be posting on my progress to any relevant thread, so stay tuned to read about my guitar ChucKing adventure - and of course the source code will be free as always. ChucK Rocks!

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 8:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Cool! I like msPacMan a lot. I have the recent "plug joystick straight into TV" emulation, occasionally you still see msPacMan cabinets around here, mostly with Galaga in it as well. I like games like that in that they are hard but fair and you can play for short bursts. Most modern games are easy, unfair and you can't really enjoy them in short bursts.

Are you into more modern arcade stuff at all?

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Kassen wrote:
Are you into more modern arcade stuff at all?


I was a real Quake fan for a few years, enjoyed the TeamFortress mod, and often played a DemoMan. Yup, I liked explosions, takin' out snipers (they just sit there with thier zoom maxed out), and blowing up enemy home bases. Once I was faced with an impossible 2-on-1 defense just outside their base. I was a goner, so I dropped a couple of grenades and rode the explosion into their home base where I scored because the couldn't catch me. Was a fun game.

That is, it was fun until so many people started cheating online. What fun is it if you have an auto-aimer that knows the target vector? I'd see these players suddenly do a 165.3º turn and hit me dead-on with the rocket launcher despite the fact that I was moving and far away. That's when it was time to quit!

Other stuff I did was make a web page of DemoMan secrets and more recently I wrote a Perl program that automatically generates levels and puts educational questions in them with lava-letters. Aside from that I'm pretty much gamed-out these days, and much of what I do is write music software, make music, and enjoy the electro-music.com forum.

What games do you like Kassen, or someone else?

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

ahhh a scope..
i wanna go analog also!
i've got some components from electronic stores...
it'd be nice to try making some crazy circuits. ^_^

(but not ChanalogucK)
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Kassen
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 11:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Yeah, I used to play Quake too, HalfLife and Unreal too but at some point the genre stopped evolving (as I saw it) beyond having to buy ever more outrageous video cards so I quit.

I'm mainly into arcade games these days, especially 2d ones. I used to play 2s fighters (Street Fighter, Guilty Gear) but those only shine if you have friends that are into them as well, so I switched to shooters.

If you remember 1942 etc? Well, that style evolved since then and now you have stuff like Ikaruga;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sd95jQ57_eM&feature=related
and Castle Shikigami;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nXEHXeBmS-s&feature=related

Sadly Wikipedia merged most shooter articles and no longer is there a sepperate one on just the modern manic stuff;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danmaku

I really like that kind of thing, even if I'm not even that good at them. It's also cool how quality releases of those let you turn your TV on it's side for the proper arcade experience. I also tend to like anything that's very weird and experimental (and mostly Japanese) then steal interface ideas to be used musically :¬)

I don't really have the space or the money to get into cabs which is probably a good thing because there's mame and I have a proper joystick with converter hooked up anyway.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2008 12:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

My favorite arcade games remain the classics, and I feel fortunate to have played many a Tempest game back in the 80's and then again in 1998 or so when I bought one and kept it for a few years. The whole story of how the game originated from a dream and took form at Atari is like a nostalgic engineering-themed fantasy or something. That, and I love the fast-paced gameplay. My high score was just over half a million back in the day.

Other favorites include Defender, Stargate, Galaga, Asteroids, Donkey Kong, Joust, and Qix. If you liked MAUI Pong, then maybe you would like to see the Pong Mechanik video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VsjoN7xWY5k

Getting back to the guitar topic, I've been thinking about tubes a little bit. I don't see a good way to simulate a tube amp in ChucK. I like the Dyno, and I'm thinking that it may be possible to chain many Dyno's together to create a tube amp profile. Each Dyno would have a different set point and slope, creating a somewhat smooth transfer function. I posted to ChucK Users list and Ge said that a tube amp Ugen was not in the plans so I'll need to create my own somehow if I want one. I think I'll code this up but just thought I'd mention it here first for comments.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2008 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Why not roll your own compressor using a VCA, envelope follower and use a curve-table for the curve instead of chaining Dyno's?

Basically the whole trick is that you have a envelope follower that maps certain amplitudes at the input to certain amounts of amplification (particularly a amplification that's less then 1 when the input's RMS is over a certain amount). In between the two you can put any curve you'd like.

What about Metal Slug? Too modern?

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2008 4:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Kassen wrote:
Why not roll your own compressor using a VCA, envelope follower and use a curve-table for the curve instead of chaining Dyno's?

What about Metal Slug? Too modern?


The reason I shyed from a curve table is that they only work above zero. I tried to study curve tables before and didn't really understand them, but my impression was that they are intended for mapping sensors and they ignore inputs below zero.

That said, you know, it occurs to me that one could make creative use of half wave rectifiers to divide and conquer this problem. I could just take the waveform, invert it, send both copies into a half wave rectifier, run each half thru an identical curve table, then invert the inverted one again and sum them. Maybe that would work. Is my understanding of curve tables correct, that they only work avove zero?

Metal slug was very fun! I played it on MAME and pressed a hundred or so coins into it so I could get to the end. I found the art to be in it's own category, the machinery and the sounds of the machinery were fascinating. In particular the tanks were well done and the UFO's. I liked how the UFO's had sphereical propulsion devices, which seems to be one of the possible ways they get around if they exist. But that's drifting into la-la land, haha!

I had a good idea for a shooter in 2D or 3D that kids and parents would both like. You are shooting at monsters and they look like monstrous numbers, or they have jerseys on or something. You cannot possibly shoot them all and they will get you soon, but you can shoot equations of them and they will join your side. Shoot a two, shoot a three, now you must shoot a five and if you do, then two, three, and five become your friends.

If you shoot your friend again, it turns against you, and larger-numbered monsters are tougher. You start out with addition and progress to higher math with division or square roots or whatever. It's a math teaching game that parents would let their kids play forever. Do you like my game?

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2008 5:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Inventor wrote:

The reason I shyed from a curve table is that they only work above zero. I tried to study curve tables before and didn't really understand them, but my impression was that they are intended for mapping sensors and they ignore inputs below zero.


Yes, but here that's no issue as the value of a envelope-follower will never get below zero either. This is assuming you still want to look at the amp as a dynamics processor. Of course, if the integral time of the envelope follower would become extremely short a dynamics processor also turns into a wave-shaper.

Quote:
That said, you know, it occurs to me that one could make creative use of half wave rectifiers to divide and conquer this problem. I could just take the waveform, invert it, send both copies into a half wave rectifier, run each half thru an identical curve table, then invert the inverted one again and sum them. Maybe that would work. Is my understanding of curve tables correct, that they only work avove zero?


I think you are right, but we suddenly have so many of those "Gen" things that I'm not sure what they all do by heart.

Quote:
Metal slug was very fun! I played it on MAME and pressed a hundred or so coins into it so I could get to the end. I found the art to be in it's own category, the machinery and the sounds of the machinery were fascinating. In particular the tanks were well done and the UFO's. I liked how the UFO's had sphereical propulsion devices, which seems to be one of the possible ways they get around if they exist. But that's drifting into la-la land, haha!


That's how I play them too; credit-feed them for the art. I'm really into hand-drawn 2d art in games and Metal Slug is still one of the greatest examples, IMHO. I'm currently trying to resist getting "Odin Sphere" for the PS2 because of the art (YouTube has a lot of examples). ESP-rade is a good example of a hand-drawn shooter that runs in MAME, btw. Oh, and Gunbird 1&2 are cool as well.

Quote:
I had a good idea for a shooter in 2D or 3D that kids and parents would both like. You are shooting at monsters and they look like monstrous numbers, or they have jerseys on or something. You cannot possibly shoot them all and they will get you soon, but you can shoot equations of them and they will join your side. Shoot a two, shoot a three, now you must shoot a five and if you do, then two, three, and five become your friends.

If you shoot your friend again, it turns against you, and larger-numbered monsters are tougher. You start out with addition and progress to higher math with division or square roots or whatever. It's a math teaching game that parents would let their kids play forever. Do you like my game?


Cool! That will lead to lots of options in chaining (chaining is shooting enemies in a certain way to get extra points). You should add different weapons, for example "multiply" and "subtract". One issue; what will your new friends do for you to help these odds? You could have more fire-power but more fire-power makes it harder to shoot specific enemies in a specific order.

Not so sure about the practicality of this in practice as kids don't play 2d shooters anymore... :¬)

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2008 6:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

It could be implemented as a 3D shooter as well.

Attached is a start at a tube amp demo for testing some tube amp models. All it does now is a. no distortion and b. x squared distortion. I'm ramping a sinosc from 0V to 2V and sending it into a multiplier to create the x squared function a la kijjaz's technique. This way I don't need to sit and spin on 1::samp. Press "a" to hear undistorted sound and "b" to hear the x squared sound.

I can't seem to find any references on tube amp transfer functions, so I'm going to post somewhere about it.


Tube_Amp1.ck
 Description:
Crude tube amp demonstration, doesn't do much yet...

Download
 Filename:  Tube_Amp1.ck
 Filesize:  1.81 KB
 Downloaded:  167 Time(s)


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 28, 2008 3:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I have looked into tube models a bit. The simplest equation for a tube that I can find is: Iout = K(mu*Vin+Vout)^(3/2). Which produces transcendental equations (equations that cannot be easily solved without iterative methods). So I made the very crude approximation that Vout does not affect Iout much, which is not really true but it removes the transcendental term. Further, all the circuitry calculations concerning gain and output impedance and stuff like that do not matter to ChucK. We just need the general shape of the waveform from [-1, 1] to be modeled. So, the model is:

Vin => HPF @ 7 Hz => LPF @ 3kHz => x^(3/2) => dac;

In the attached model I left off the filters because they will have little effect at 220 Hz, and just swept the waveform into the x^(3/2) block. You press "a" to get the unmodified sound (whatever your computer does with a sine wave of gain 2), and "b" to get the tube model. Interestingly on this Mac, the response to "a" is warm and smooth, indicating some sort of tube model already in place for large amplitudes - I wonder what's going on there? Anyway, let me know how it sounds to you, thanks.


Tube_Amp2.ck
 Description:
an oversimplified V^3/2 tube model

Download
 Filename:  Tube_Amp2.ck
 Filesize:  1.93 KB
 Downloaded:  146 Time(s)


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 1:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

That example from the previous post didn't work, this one does. I went over and over in my mind about how to do this properly and concluded that I should not solve the circuit equations, but rather put them into ChucK and let ChucK solve them. So ChucK does an iterative optimization to obtain the tube transfer function, neglecting capacitors and transformer, which it then outputs in a table.

I then paste that table into a pair of Gen7 Ugens in the other file for wave-shaping of the ramped sinusoidal test circuit. It's a good first working model of a tube amp! yay! I have learned so much in this little project, plus its also fulfilling to model a tube amp properly. Give it a listen and let me know what you think!


Tube_Eqn_Test3.ck
 Description:
Solves the circuit equations for a tube preamp and outputs a table of simulation results.

Download
 Filename:  Tube_Eqn_Test3.ck
 Filesize:  1.28 KB
 Downloaded:  164 Time(s)


Tube_Amp4.ck
 Description:
Models a regular sinusoid and a tube amp, sounds "warm". Press "a" for sine, "b" for tube.

Download
 Filename:  Tube_Amp4.ck
 Filesize:  2.34 KB
 Downloaded:  175 Time(s)


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2008 3:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I have a good one for you here. As posted in another thread but this time with source code. Tube FFT Warmer sweeps the decaying harmonics from zero to full amplitude three times at ten seconds each time in the output file. The result is a swept tube-like "warming" enhancement to the sound.


Tube_FFT_Warmer1.jpg
 Description:
The waveforms.
 Filesize:  14.21 KB
 Viewed:  7378 Time(s)

Tube_FFT_Warmer1.jpg



Tube_FFT_Warmer2.ck
 Description:
The ChucK file that does this test effect.

Download
 Filename:  Tube_FFT_Warmer2.ck
 Filesize:  1.92 KB
 Downloaded:  168 Time(s)


Tube_FFT_Warmer1.mp3
 Description:
The warmed up sinusoid sound file.

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 Filename:  Tube_FFT_Warmer1.mp3
 Filesize:  468.68 KB
 Downloaded:  395 Time(s)


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c-cam



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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2008 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

That warmer sounds pretty phat inventor.
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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2008 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

c-cam wrote:
That warmer sounds pretty phat inventor.


Thanks, c-cam, the more i listen to it the more i like it!

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PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2008 5:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Well, I bought the guitar now and a great amp to go with it, both Fender products but low-end ones. I also got a 1/4 inch plug and took a cut-in-half BNC cable that I had, and connected them together to create a 1/4 inch to BNC adapter cable.

This allowed me to plug the head phones out jack from the amp into my beat up old scope. Yay, real guitar waveforms! The image below is from a plucked E string (the bass, or lower E string). You can see that there is a strong harmonic content. At other times during the E-string note, the harmonics are greater than the fundamental, making for some tough note-detection work.

Anyway, now I have toys to play with, woohoo!!!


E_string_waveform.jpg
 Description:
Waveform of E string on my cheezy old scope
 Filesize:  291.47 KB
 Viewed:  142 Time(s)
This image has been reduced to fit the page. Click on it to enlarge.

E_string_waveform.jpg



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PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2008 6:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I couldn't afford a guitar tuner, but who needs one when you're a ChucK programmer? To tune my guitar I coded up the attached tuner. Just press a string number from 1 thru 6, then pluck the string. The tuner will isolate the desired open string frequency, then count zero crossings to calculate the actual string frequency. It then presents this information as a percentage value. So you keep adjusting the string until you reach within 1% of 100% and your guitar is tuned! Saved me at least fifty bucks and it's probably better than a commercial tuner too. You gotta lub that ChucK!!!


Guitar_Tuner2.ck
 Description:
One ChucKtastic guitar tuner!

Download
 Filename:  Guitar_Tuner2.ck
 Filesize:  2.51 KB
 Downloaded:  163 Time(s)


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 09, 2008 7:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I put together a web page that summarizes all of the technical details that were discussed here on electro-music.com regarding a Guitar Motion Sensor and posted them on my site. here is the url:

http://www.freedomodds.com/music/gms.html

Also I have an Ubuntu CD on the way finally. I ended up requesting a free one with 4 to 10 weeks delivery time. I have to be patient because I'm still paying off that car debt, but in the next few months things will clear up and I'll be able to buy hardware once again.

In the mean time I practice my guitar and learn some of the basics of how to play it. After all, when the time comes to demo the Guitar Motion Sensor, I'll need to actually *play* something on it for the video, won't I? So in a way the financial delays are a bit of a blessing in disguise, I suppose.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 10, 2008 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Wow, I have made an amazing disovery! Well, it's not all that big a deal but I'm quite pleased with it. I put a 1/4" to 1/8" audio adapter on my guitar cable and plugged it into the line-in jack on my eMac and cranked the sensitivity of the thing all the way up. Then I ran the following ChucK program:
Code:
adc => dac;
adc.gain (10);
day => now;

And you can guess what happened. Yes, beautiful crisp, clear guitar sound came out of my Mac's speakers! Actually I don't know how low the noise floor is on this setup, but it seems to work just fine.

Now I can get guitar into ChucK without a sound card, amazing! Of course, this does shut off the microphone but that's OK I'll eventually get a sound card with a microphone. Why am I so excited about this?

Because it means that I can go straight to buying the parts for my guitar motion sensor without having to buy a sound card first! That shaves at least a month or perhaps two months off of the development time! Plus it also means that I can put the headphones on to play my guitar at night without bothering the neighbors, or else I can send the sound out to the speakers at low volume and play at 3am to my heart's content without getting nasty letters from the rental office.

Yay, it seems rather an obvious thing to do, but I was convinced that I would need a sound card to get any sound quality at all directly out of a guitar. Maybe it's the high quality of the Apple built-in audio, or maybe this would work on a typical PC hardware as well, I don't know. Anyway, life is full of little surprises and this is a happy one! Cheers everyone!

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 4:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Well, now that I can get the guitar into the computer cleanly I started writing some effects. Attached is "Harpy", which makes the guitar sound kind of like a harp. It does this with a specified number of PitShifters (5 is default) spaced evenly from near zero to 1.0 shift. I got the idea from the demonic vocoder, but instead of sounding demonic, it makes the guitar sound heavenly!


harpy.ck
 Description:
Makes your guitar sound like a harp!

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 Filename:  harpy.ck
 Filesize:  565 Bytes
 Downloaded:  148 Time(s)


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Inventor
Stream Operator


Joined: Oct 13, 2007
Posts: 5978
Location: San Antonio, Tx, USA
Audio files: 258

PostPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2008 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I have been expanding that web page on the guitar motion sensor project to three pages now, and interestingly some young person has decided to help out with the project. Then I realized that the Guitar Mouse program that I posted some time ago would make a great demo for the concept, so I wrote that up and posted it. Plus the phase of the moon on my finances seems to be lining up in such a way that I will be able to buy the hardware sometime soon. Also I ordered a free Ubuntu CD which will be here in a month or two. So things are going well and it won't be long 'till I'm waving my guitar around and programming up all kinds of neat special effects. Woohoo!
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Inventor
Stream Operator


Joined: Oct 13, 2007
Posts: 5978
Location: San Antonio, Tx, USA
Audio files: 258

PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2008 5:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

More good news! Since putting together the Guitar Motion Sensor web page and announcing it, my website traffic has more than tripled.

In the graph below, the blue bars are unique visitors and the orange bars are hits. I normally get around 20 hits a day from the entire site, but now it's up over 60 hits a day. Plus the orange bar is bigger relative to the blue bar, meaning that people are reading more pages when they visit.

Apparently people are interested in guitar HID control. I'm happy to be a part of it all. Bonus!


web_traffic.jpg
 Description:
Graph of web site traffic. Note recent increase.
 Filesize:  26.72 KB
 Viewed:  6463 Time(s)

web_traffic.jpg



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