[LAD] So what do you think sucks about Linux audio ?

Michael Bechard gothmagog at yahoo.com
Tue Feb 5 15:47:02 UTC 2013

Hi Dave,

My experience as a Linux audio user:

1. not enough instrument plugins
2. poor VST support
3. poor session management
4. inconsistent use of existing standards by apps

My experience as a Linux developer (albeit a small one):

1. too many standards, hard to know what to implement
2. too much fragmentation in the developer community, hinders progress on #1

My opinions on what is a problem for Linux adoption by the wider community of electronic musicians:

Almost all of the things you mentioned.

Many developers in the Linux community either a.) seem unable to put themselves in the shoes of a musician coming off of most other professional-grade audio software on non-Linux platforms, or b.) don't seem to care about catering to that audience's wants or needs. I know I'm painting with broad strokes here; not everyone is like that, but most seem to be, IMO.

Michael Bechard

 From: Dave Phillips <dlphillips at woh.rr.com>
To: linux-audio-user at lists.linuxaudio.org; linux-audio-dev at lists.linuxaudio.org 
Sent: Tuesday, February 5, 2013 8:58 AM
Subject: [LAD] So what do you think sucks about Linux audio ?

I've been reading a lot of negative (read: vitriolic) commentary about the world of Linux audio development and applications. I won't bother to say where, just "the usual places" will have to suffice. Of greater interest to me is the commentary itself - it seems to boil down to the following plaints and lamentations (in no particular order) :

Too many distros.
Too many audio-optimized distros.
Not enough native plugins, esp. instruments.
Inconsistent support for VST/VSTi plugins.
Too many unstable/unfinished applications.
Too many  "standards" (esp. wrt plugins).
Poor external/internal session management.
Poor support for certain modes of composition (think Ableton Live).
Lack of support for contemporary hardware.
Confusion re: desktops, and GUI toolkits.
Too difficult to set up audio system.
JACK is a pain.
Too much conflict/fragmentation within the development community.

I'm not so interested in comments on the commentary, I have my own, but say what you will about the list. I figure that most denizens of these lists already have ready replies and responses to these and other criticisms, many of which have been voiced here previously. What I'm more interested in is what *you* think is missing most or just plain wrong about the situation. Please, try to speak your piece without flames or dissing other developers and/or their work. Frankly speaking, I've had enough of that crap, and I'm most thankful these days for such forum amenities as "mute user" and autodiscard, along with the standard filters found in mail clients.

I'm reminded of John Cage's comments regarding the behavior of the NY Philharmonic when they destroyed his equipment during the premire of Atlas Eclipticalis, something to the effect that his concerns had ceased to be musical and had become social, i.e. that he had to figure a way to allow people to be free yet behave themselves with respect towards the common goal (e.g. Cage's music and property). I'm going to guess that he was still working on that up to his death.

So, in your honest and bold opinion as user and/or developer, what do we lack most and what can we do without that we already have ? Please feel free to expand your remarks as you like. I'm planning an article on the topic and will likely use selected comments, subject to approval of course.



Linux-audio-dev mailing list
Linux-audio-dev at lists.linuxaudio.org
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.linuxaudio.org/pipermail/linux-audio-dev/attachments/20130205/2731065c/attachment.html>

More information about the Linux-audio-dev mailing list