Convertible PCs Could Transform Windows Music Software, But Many Models Won’t Stick

What if your computer could do what tablets do – without having to kludge together multiple devices? That question probably doesn’t keep ordinary people up at night. But with music makers unusually ravenous users of touch software, they might just be at the vanguard of new convergences of creative computing. Picture this scenario. Your computer behaves the way it always has – with the usual complement of software and the same comfortable form factor and editing tools. You have the precision of the keyboard and pointer. Then, when you need it, that computer can also be a tablet. You pick …

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Move Over, Kinect? Asus Xtion PRO Claims to Be PC-Friendly Developer Solution for Windows, Linux

Before Microsoft made Kinect’s 3D-sensing, skeletal-tracking “natural interaction” a console tech, it got its start via maker PrimeSense on the PC. Ironically, efforts by hackers to do amazing things with Kinect may be part of what has given Kinect traction – certainly, launch titles were extremely limited. Now, the same natural interaction looks to come full circle to the PC, and make the transition from hacks to official development. We’ve already seen the OpenNI group, of which Microsoft and PrimeSense are members, promise open, standard development across devices. Now, we’re beginning to see devices, plural, in place of just Microsoft’s …

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The Age of the Tablet is Also Age of the HD Tablet

Look – normal ports! Asus’ EeePad isn’t exactly beautiful, but having HDMI and USB could be a sight for sore eyes. Photo courtesy Asustek. We’ve been talking about this so long, you’d be forgiven for missing the moment when it actually happens. But the time is now: the promised future of inexpensive, HD-capable tablets has arrived. Advances in low-power processors and touch-sensitive displays indicated early on that a wave of tablets was coming. Apple deserves credit for being first to market with a credible, elegantly-designed tablet in the iPad. Now, at last, the iPad isn’t alone. If the 2010 iPad …

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DIY Compact Music Workstations: Magnets, Eee, x0xb0x, Recycling

Very often, computers and music gear greedily consume whole corners of the room. Here’s a tidy alternative, modest in space consumption as well as in cost. So, what’s so wonderful about DIY creations by our friend Sasa Djuric (aka fibra)? It isn’t just that his stands are recycled from monitor stand parts. It’s not just because the free ReBirth for Windows and an Asus netbook make for a wonderfully affordable computer music station. It’s not even that his cases for the x0xb0x 303 clone and a MIDIbox project are beautifully executed, or that magnets on the stands more effectively support …

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Asus Eee PC Gets SDK; Anyone Using Eee for Music?

While mentioning the OLPC XO laptop, I have to point, as well, to Asus’ Eee. Sure, it’s not necessarily designed for being in the middle of a sub-Saharan desert, but it has some of the other hallmarks of OLPC — low power use, light weight, extremely low cost, and open-source, Linux-based software. These little machines are underpowered for many digital audio tasks, but MIDI and basic live audio are certainly feasible. I’ve heard at least a couple of readers using them. Anyone using them for musical tasks? Asus has launched an “SDK” — a bit of a misnomer, as you …

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