(max) presentation mode – syncRhythm

Up until now, we’ve been doing all our Max work in patcher view. Max offers another way to organize objects and present a clean interface to interact with your program, call presentation view.

I’ve made a short (12 minute) video lecture that demonstrates (right-click link to download). What follows is just a little summary/overview.

Download SyncRhythm-3.maxpat. It’s a variation of SyncRhythm, that allows you to synchronize note value changes to multiple metro objects. The differences are minor:

  • I’ve added another rhythmic metro (brining the total to 3). Selecting everything for one of the rhythmic metros and then option-dragging is the easiest way to duplicate parts of your patcher.
  • I’ve added comments above each tab object for clarity.
  • I’ve added number objects feeding each note number message, to allow you to change the MIDI note playback of each rhythmic metro, and comments for clarity.
  • I’ve added a comment above the global sync tab object for clarity.
  • To the transport section, I’ve added:
    • a metro object, set to a time interval of 1 ticks (has to be plural, no matter what the value), using the @interval attribute.
    • the metro object bangs the transport so that it reports location with single tick accuracy in the number boxes below.
    • the number boxes have been modified (in the inspector) to not draw the triangle and ignore mouse clicks, to display numbers only.
    • a comment has been added to the toggle for clarity.
    • and the rewind section has been changed so that clicking on the rewind message triggers a bang, first to a 0. value to rewind the transport, and then to the transport to report its updated location in the number boxes below.

SyncRhythm-3 is currently in patcher view. Along the bottom of the window is an icon that looks like a projector screen. Click it to go into presentation view. Your window should go blank, because nothing has been added to presentation view. Click the projector icon again, and make sure the patcher is unlocked (and in patcher view).

You have to specify which objects to include in presentation view. Select one or more of the tab objects, the choose “Add to Presentation” from the Object menu (or shift-cmd-p). Click anywhere else in the window and you will see that the formerly selected objects now have a pinkish halo around them. This pink halo shows that they will be included in the presentation view.

For my video demonstration I chose to add:

  • all the tab objects (for rhythmic metros and global sync metro) and their associated comments,
  • the number inputs and comments to change note playback number for each rhythmic metro,
  • the toggle and comment to start and stop the transport,
  • the rewind message object,
  • the floating point (flonum) object to enter a new tempo,
  • and the three number boxes and comments below the transport that display the current transport location.

I did not add any metro objects, the transport object, any of the message boxes feeding note value durations to metros, and the makenote/noteout objects.

While still unlocked, click on the presentation view icon again. Now you will only see the items you added to presentation view. Patch cords are not shown in presentation view. You can move objects around in presentation view, resize them, change their font sizes, colors, or most any other attribute through the inspector. Any changes made in presentation view do not show up in patcher view. Rearrange the objects, then switch back to patcher view. Switch again to presentation view.

Clicking on the toggle in presentation view starts the transport and all the metros. The patcher works exactly as it did in patcher view.

Download SynchRhythm-3presentation.maxpat. You can see how I have rearranged the objects from a full 1024 x 768 window into something about a third of the space. I have changed the font size of the rewind message so that it is more noticeable and easier to find. I’ve also added a comment by the tempo number box. I added that comment in presentation view. Try it in your patcher, position it as you want, then switch back to patcher view. The comment will stay in its presentation view location, as it has no patcher-associated location. You can add objects in either view, but adding objects in presentation view can make them hard to find in patcher view.

The final thing I did was to set the patcher to open in presentation view. With the patcher in presentation view and unlocked, go to the Patcher Inspector in the View menu (shift-cmd-I). This allows you to set attributes for the patcher, including whether to open the patcher in presentation view or not. Click the open in presentation view option, save your patcher, then reopen it. It will open in presentation view.


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