• Weeks 165-166

    3 February 2016

    Twinklr is moving on very nicely. At the end of this fortnight, I wrapped up a first pass of rewriting the existing code. The music box now happily plays in a wide variety of scales, with any note selectable as root: that makes it much easier to play in key with other musicians, or to improvise around existing pieces of music. It already makes the whole thing much more instrumenty.

    I also worked together a simple save/load mechanism with eight memories: the instrument stores not only the position of notes, but also the scale, root, and length of the stave, maing it easy to restore a state you once had.

    And finally, at the end of this three-week period, I rewrote my code for spitting MIDI out of the device. There’s now a simple-to-use MIDI preference panel, making it easy to reload available inputs, alter the length of notes that you’ll send out, and a ‘panic’ button to reset all output. It’s really coming together.

    Selworthy is being tightened into place for a new deployment: that means shoring up some minor issues, and lots of little improvements based upon user feedback. I’m also overhauling the code to make it easier to bring other developers into the project.

    I spent a quick hour of lunch assembling the latest revision of the Walton PCB and we finally have a fully functioning version. I’m thinking about replacing one of the components – there’s some mechanical tolerance I’m not happy with – but now the whole shebang is working, it’s worth working out what to do next with the project: is it something to keep to myself? To open source? To offer for purchase as a kit? I might talk to some people about it shortly.

    And finally, I spent some time tinkering with some electronics as a spin-off from Twinklr: exploring an aspect of its interactions and translating them to a slightly different environment. That involved first just breadboarding up some components to discover how they worked; this went surprisingly well, and I think I’m going to keep pursuing this angle of the project in odd moments.