call for monome blogs!

  • hello!

    anyone keeping a monome-related blog out there? i know of the stribe blog ( ), a few other kit-blogs, and i've started one here, documenting my research:

    i'm interested in developing a user-contributed blog aggregator for monome-related knowledge. i think this forum does a great job for announcing, but it's going to get exponentially difficult to keep up with all this knowledge we're making, especially if it's only documented within a forum.

    if there's enough interest, i'll pursue this. i might also offer up a few free rides on my bloggin' server...

  • i heartily agree, forums arent ideal for those who arrive late into a discussion. Ill try to whip up a post or two on my site; something on my setup/use/philosophy; shortlike...

  • %: your new video is mind-blowing. incredible performance.

    i'm again trying to address the data structure of this site, and i completely agree that the forum is really a fire hose.

    i'm still having a hard time envisioning a proper method of tracking user contributed apps and media. a central list would be best, but updating that list is tricky. a forum area would work possibly, but vanilla has been a huge pain for various reasons.

    as for docs updates, i'm very interested in general suggestions, or if people write up additional tutorials i'd be happy to feature them.

  • The Ableton Live users have a really good WiKi going on that is divided up really well. History of the application/Tips/Patches/Video/etc.

    As soon as I get my Molar and MonoChrome plug ins working, I will be writing a very detailed setup and usage tutuorial on the subject.


  • thanks for the props, tehn!

    i think a good first step is decentralizing knowledge away from the forum, and getting it into a format that's more flexible. blogging works well for this, especially for collecting personal knowledge and documenting processes.

    developing an aggregator isn't terribly difficult; i think it's the interface for disseminating the information that takes time. i'd be willing to help out (i wrote my thesis on this).

    setting up an svn for keeping track of apps might also be a good idea...

  • i've considered svn for some time. have you had much success using it for binaries? i think it'd be great for chuck patches, monomeserial sources, etc, but max/msp patches wouldn't enjoy quite all of the benefits. but maybe so.

    this might sound silly, but is there a nice web interface for svn that "normal users" could access?

    ideally i think we'd all like to see a list of projects, each with updated file downloads, docs (if they exist) and (potentially) an ongoing dialog about each app. which is why originally i thought a forum would be sufficient, but the organization isn't conducive.

    any advice?

  • > %: your new video is mind-blowing. incredible performance.

    Yes, very nice performance indeed. Great work!

  • thanks, hypno!

    @tehn - i've used svn to document images before, which worked as expected. i could see an svn being most useful for the bigger things like monomeserial... it would probably be difficult to manage for community apps without some hefty customization.

    if we can get people in the practice of using blogs to keep up with updates to apps, research, media, etc then it'll be so easy to aggregate up an feed of user-contributed content that can be visualized along with the forum.

    this could keep the knowledge distributed, would scale really well, and perhaps open the door for a lot of collaboration.

  • I would also suggest a wiki. It is really convenient to make a central knowledge repository. And it will lower the learning curve a lot for new comers. There was a wiki initially, but it is not easily accessible anymore.

    Svn could be very useful too for app and source code management. For binary files, svn just overwrites files for each new version. In that case, there is no merge operation.

    A possible good candidate is Trac: it combines a wiki and an svn repository.


  • tehn:
    There are indeed nice web front ends for SVN

    Blender's SVN repository is visible online for instance.:

    The binary files will work fine in SVN, but they will be replaced with each change, rather than modified using diffs as the text based files would be. This isn't a big deal really other than a bit more diskspace is needed, and you can't easily discern changes between files (which for a binary file isn't going to be possible anyway... how do you describe changes to a max/msp file in text?)


  • there are indeed mxt which is max text files, but they're certainly not human-readable. this situation is another gripe i have with max/msp, is not having a clear diff-system for revisions. on the other hand, max/msp was never meant for such a thing.

    the wiki is still up at but it's not directly linked because it received incredibly little contribution in it's 12 month existence and served as more of a repository. app contributions were posted directly to the forum (like now) and i personally couldn't keep up with cross-posting updates to the wiki, so maybe it's my problem.

    i've looked at trac, it's very nice. i'm not sure if it's the perfect fit for what we need (or svn in general) but it's certainly up for consideration.

    i do like the idea of people having independent blogs. stretta's blog is a great example. but again people shouldn't need to start a blog to upload something they made.

    any more thoughts would be appreciated-- i'm hoping to spend my time implementing the most desired system for everyone.

  • true.

    i think wikis, blogs, and svns all have their places, but are altogether more powerful when combined. kinda like captain planet.

    what if the community page could visualize forum discussions, recent wiki edits, popular articles, new blog posts, fresh media from vimeo/youtube/flickr, and svn updates? that'd be rad, right?

  • that would be absolutely rad.

    my most outrageous hope is that everything could be fluidly connected and inter-linked. it's also a mega-design-programming job. aye.

  • going to throw in my two cents here and suggest mercurial (or, really, any distributed system) for version control instead of subversion. they require far less configuration and don't force developers to use a central repository. i recommend mercurial ( ) because I've been using it for my own personal projects for quite some time (I tried both git and bzr and wasn't tremendously happy with either). if that's something you're curious about, I'd recommend reading "Understanding Mercurial" ( ) to perhaps get a feel for the point of distributed revision control.

  • What about FTP? We could have a folder for uploaders (after first confirmed). Someone could moderate the current release folder and past versions. Filezilla is a good free FTP server.

  • A possible way to have people using more the wiki is to encourage them to do so. For example, there could be kind of policy page explaining the rationale of the different tools and requesting people to create a wiki page for there new app, and not only announce it on the forums.

    The wiki could be great for kit builders. Having a central place for questions such as: which diode are good, where to buy them, which pots, which IR sensors, how to fix stuck row/column, enclosure idea, where to get a faceplate machined...

    Of course a wiki needs a critcal mass of contributors and content to take off. I had the feeling that the old wiki was slowly taking off I would say. That's why I think it is a bit pity that it's left on the side.


  • thanks for the good suggestions and encouragement. i'll be working hard on a solution right away.

  • This isn't a Monome blog so to speak, but it is the Monome category from my blog:

  • yeah, that's great! i'll add it to my list.

    tehn: most everything spits out some form of rss these days, so collecting all the data should be at least somewhat simplified. we could also set up some service ala ping-o-matic that bloggers could ping when posting, which could update the 'recent blog posts' component.

    let me know if you need / want any help, i can donate some resources.

  • Tehn and monome crew:
    I am a drupal expert.

    i can setup a software repository like quickly and easily. svn or cvs isn't needed as you can just tarball your latest release and it keeps all versions available and with latest release shown prominently..

    this way you can organize documentation, track feature requests, bugs etc... and easily categorize the apps..

    furthermore, each user can have a blog... and/or you can do a monome planet via rss like

    the sky is the limit.

    it would not be difficult to port you existing site into drupal either, old forum and new so that the info is readily available to all.

    you could pay me with a monome...


  • Maybe i'm late, but this is what I think:

    I vote, like @iotao, for Mercurial. For the very same reasons: ease of use, and past experience. Also, check this out, their standard installer, installs you a web server by default, which is turned off, unless you run

    hg serve

    from your repository+internet server. That serves up a tasteful decent, if maybe simplistic (kind of like here), front end to your repository check-in checkouts etc.

    As for the content structure, seems to me developers and contribs. should follow a simple "publishing guide/publishing wizard" that produces some sort of mini-site (mainly blog). In my mind, this is mostly similar to sourceforge, freshmeat, mamboxchange ... so maybe Trac is a viable option; it could be made simpler and prettier.

    We need more Wiki. Maybe if there were "events" ... some sort of peer presure expectations with some sort of bids for tutorials... IMHO there were little contribs. because there were few people with confidence/expertise ratio high enough to author anything.....

    hey if this is php or RoR maybe I can help ...

  • my blog>> with new monome vid

  • @devism that is absolutely superb.

  • Yeah, I don't know the original song, but it sounds great!

  • devism: aw3som3. Really cool.

  • now I really can't wait for my 128 to arrive after watching Devisms MLR demo. I like the way you have it running upwards instead of 16 across. took a second for my brain to realize how you set it up. The beat is a nice Pete Rock/DJ Premier sorta jam. two thumbs up.

  • @tehn

    If you are looking for structural approaches, the site has a nice structure for finding plugins for their system (see I am not certain what back end it is using, but its interface strong points are:

    1) searchablity
    2) simple organization
    3) anyone can register and post their apps and documentation
    4) almost more simplistic than a "wiki" structure

  • @pwenzel & tehn

    drupal actually has integrated jquery in its core. jquery is used for rich interfaces like .. many jquery modules exist for drupal.

    drupal is what runs the whole site at with the same "project" module i was suggesting we use for organizing an ... (incidentally, they arent using any traditional code version control either, and its really not needed for apps that are not part of a greater system per say... you just tarball and name the versions.. it archives the old ones.)

    as a bonus you get,,,, and etc etc...

    all with a single site, single codebase, neatly related and organized content... etc. drupal.

    ok. im a bit of a drupal freak.

  • @veggieryan:
    honestly, I think that drupal is a bit heavy for what's going on here at monome. currently, the site has a brilliant "feel" to it, if you catch what I mean there, and I think that trying to bring everything over to a new content management system runs a great risk of giving the site a totally different feel, which, in my opinion, would be entirely the wrong way to go. and that's before considering how much time and effort converting the current theme and content over would expend.

    additionally, we're chilling just fine without any additional javascript here, and, while jquery is nice (I've used it on several occasions), it's mostly form with some function thrown in for good measure. i mean, we're not doing asynchronous HTTP anywhere, so that requirement is out, and anything beyond that would have to be implemented on its own. not worth the time.

    in summary: minimalism is good, and in many ways feels like a sanctuary away from the hype, flash, and overindulgence of this "new breed" of shiny, moving, glowing, faux-plasticine and faux-glass web design.

    no, I'm down with a "planet monome," if you will. you're likely to be able to find one in nearly any language you look (hell, even esoteric ones like Factor have them), and I think that would be a good intermediary solution. perhaps a trac integration or some sort of development log would be cool, too. mercurial's web interface is themeable, so that's something to keep in mind.

    also: first person to say "web 2.0" gets a tongue lashing.

  • you're correct regarding the requirement for absolute minimalism. i'm attracted to something like joomla/drupal for the sake of unified logins (forum, wiki, etc) but i'd prefer not to have a massive unemployed system underneath which slows actual daily use.

    mercurial/trac both sound appealing as well, the only drawbacks being a lack of unity with a forum and cms. i'll look into them more closely.

    as much as i love modern web interface, i often long for the simplicity of the early BBS.

  • i dont see how you can say drupal is heavy, yet slapping on a whole seperate system like trac is light...

    drupal to me is extremely light and simple. 10x smaller than joomla for instance.

    its simple to have one interface for the whole site. not one forum on top of another. a custom planet, custom wiki, seperate tracker, etc that each work in a different way...

    minimalism is good, but you have to have a unified system or there is the chaos we have now where its difficult to find an app or its latest version.

  • i agree with you completely, what we have now is a mashup, which is why we're trying to figure out a unified solution.

    i wasn't suggesting mercurial/trac were any lighter than joomla/drupal-- everything has a footprint.

    could anyone suggest sites that actually put into practice what we're looking for? wiki/forum/cms/user-area that is lightweight? for example,

  • hello all, i'm the admin and site creator of i suppose i'll chime in here. i heartedly agree that as the monome community grows finding a unified solution in which all thing monome can sit under, is ideal.

    this was the reason behind choosing joomla as our CMS over at elektron-users. i considered drupal but for varying reasons went with joomla. drupal is a wonderful CMS though, i think both are very capable of being the unified solution it seems that's being called for here.

    there were many reasons why i choose joomla, but one of the big ones was i really liked 'Fireboard', the forum component we use on our site. it is fairly light weight but has many of the amenities of the larger boards. the e-u site revolves solely around the community, and the forum being the largest part. the site is also pretty active with files. having a good repository that was very extensible was another need of ours. the 'Docman' component is really pretty amazing, and yet very simple.

    i feel the site is a working beta. while there no current glaring bugs, i'm still stream lining it and trimming off the fat. my current focus is on user experience and maintaining a bug free system that doesn't feel like factions crammed together. that was a huge factor when we decided to migrate. being able to have a single login and have all user data regardless of where it's at on the site is very important to me, and the users. i wanted a seamless system from top to bottom (code to ui).

    i'm currently testing user-blogs on my devsite now. essentially, this will allow users to have their own user/blog pages...share videos, music, etc. after that i don't want to add much more functionality, for fear of the site turning into a frankenstein and i don't want to lose the sites focus.

    i have used Drupal working with 3 clients. i do think Drupal is a bit lighter but for our needs at elektron-users, and the future of the community i felt Joomla was the best way to go.

    people can get pretty heated about their feeling on Joomla vs. Drupal. i could care less about a vs. discussion, to me their both very capable and incredible CMS's. it's about finding the best solution per situation/client. the good thing about either of these, is you can have all the things described in the above posts.

    i am very happy with Joomla as our solution at e-u.

  • Hi, again:

  • Sites like and are also using wiki-based sites, editable by users, also very friendly and interesting communities. Risk of sabotage and vandalism is always present, but the content can be easily restored.

    VVVV uses tikiwiki, there have been some bugs, but I think they were caused by customizations:

  • sorry to sound redundant
    but is the solution.
    it can easily achieve any of the examples and requirements.
    I will take the pepsi challenge with any of these other platforms any day of the week.
    Drupal is minimal, modular, flexible and clean.


  • honestly i'm leaning towards drupal, no doubt. it seems appropriate for our needs. at the same time, my primary concern is full integration, and how much i can strip *away* from the site. i want to maintain absolute minimalism.

    i'll draw up a spec, which may bring a few more questions.

    thanks for throwing in so many suggestions. they're all good-- it's just a matter of focusing more precisely on our needs which are still to be established.

  • I can say with 100% confidence that you can strip away as much as you want. Out of the box its pretty minimal.

    Drupal can be themed very easily and anything can be hidden or disabled via css, permissions or hook_form_alter per your needs.

    It will be a cakewalk duplicating your current look and minimalism while adding the features you need for apps, blogs and wiki's... all maintaining the important minimalism, especially since they are all one system.

    I would love to see a detailed spec.

    PS: thanks for mlr... it never gets old...

  • i'm looking for wiki suggestions. standalone, in addition to modules for drupal or joomla.

    presently i'm a bit interested in moinmoin.


  • you can see a DokuWiki installation working this joomla based site:

    seamless integration and speedy

  • @tehn: drupal has several modules for building wiki's... but the best is actually the core book module. it allows you to build your wiki(s) with hierarchy...

    please don't feel you have to go outside drupal just to get a wiki... the beauty is that all can be done within one system. it is much cleaner and minimal this way...

    feel free to email me if you wish to discuss the details.. i can walk you through many questions via phone as well.

  • how is the state of this matter now?
    We have a wonderful dokuwiki going on, but this dream of a grand unified CMS.... [I wouldn't say we are in the red or critical mass yet, some sort of crisis] I think with the dokuwiki pretty much the urgency has been deferrred....

  • you're correct. until i have the time to invest in some sort of massive overhaul, which i'm not sure when that would be, or what the specific goals would be. i have a few things i'd like to see, but i'll have to wait until it becomes a larger priority.


    Hoping to keep a public space for Miximal a Google group of Monome users. It started with the RPM 08 but has already doubled in members and new projects are building. Join us if you make music with your monome.

  • @Mesmer

    don't want to draw too much away from the actual topic but i just wanted to give my two cents about in all honesty it seems like a complete marketing scam. lofi blah, blah. i own an lc-a and can imagine its engineers being annoyed by it being labled a 'toy camera'. especially when it has such a lovely lens!


    I'll be getting my 64 next week I think. I'll be chronicling my work on a play - which I've already started. You need to be registered to see that stuff. Anyone from here is welcome.

  • RE: call for blogs.

    I have been posting monome related music, video, and apps I have made on y blog. Here's the link:

    It's definitely not just monome stuff, but I've been taggign everything monome related with "monome".