[linux-audio-dev] Alternative Sequencer User Interface

Tim Orford tim at orford.org
Tue Apr 13 15:01:39 UTC 2004

On Sat, Apr 10, 2004 at 05:52:36AM +0200, Thorsten Wilms wrote:
> Ok, now the screenshot Tim Orford linked to
> (
> reminds me of Ableton Live. Everybody who doesn't know it should 
> take a look at this screenshots:
> http://www.ableton.com/pages/products/live/live3tour/whatislive/live3sessionbig.gif
> http://www.ableton.com/pages/products/live/live3tour/whatislive/live3arrangebig.gif

yes. ableton live is v nice.

> Blender.
> It has something like it's own windowing system,  
> whereby what is called a Window in Blender is rather like 
> Panes in other environments.
> You can split windows verticaly and horizontaly and resize every 
> window by dragging the borders. Every window (usualy) has a 
> header (even though these can be at the bottom) wich can hold 
> buttons and menus. But the first control in every header is 
> for selecting the windowtype (3d view, file-browser, schematic 
> view, ...).
> Setups of these windows can be saved as Screens. Shortcuts 
> allow to switch through Screens, or to maximize the window 
> the mouse is over to full-screen (or minimize afterwards).
> All this allows to adapt Blender to one's own workflow 
> or current task at hand.

i agree that this is fairly essential functionality.

but i think there is an argument that windows should be managed by
the window manager:-)

i had a quick look at some of the many undocumented gtk docking systems 
(such as Gimpdock or gdldock)(kde also has kdocwidget:
http://developer.kde.org/documentation/library/3.0-api/classref/kdeui/KDockWidget.html )
It appears that people are beginning to realise how desirable this is,
and it looks likely that gtk will eventually include a standard docking 
widget as things mature. Anjuta (http://anjuta.org/anjuta.php?page=home)
is one of the best examples under gtk.

the screenshot you refer to shows separate windows running under the Ion 
window manager which provides most if not all the features you mentioned. 
Perhaps having these services provided by the wm makes certain things harder,
but it seems to be the most versatile; all apps benefit, and the user
has more choice and more consistency.

> The same approach could be used for sequencer / audio suite.
> To take it a little further, the windowtypes could be 
> seperate applications / plugins.

it would be nice if for example there was a standard 'editor'
api so that apps could call upon a range of different eg key
or audio editors, ideally either embedded or in a separate window.
I think that there are some not-so-trivial technical problems
to wrestle with in this, and i am not a good enough coder to
do it.

> I can't code anything coming only close to such functionality, 
> but I'm more than willing to work on conception and graphics, 
> if there is interest.

i will release the code to my app in a few weeks hopefully
and would certainly welcome ideas.
In the meantime perhaps you could look at Ardour?:-)
Or perhaps a window manager?
There is also a need for good gtk and kde themes and icon sets.

Tim Orford

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