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RE: Mercedes and visual looping

>I was recently given a copy of Steinberg's X<>Pose to review for a mac
>magazine. If you haven't heard of it, it's an animation program that
>assigns MIDI notes to pict files and quicktime movies, and has a bunch of
>effects and modifiers that are also controllable via MIDI notes and

is X<>Pose available for Mac only?

>So I'm thinking that there's a way to create a visual analog for 
>what we do musically, using something like X<>Pose

The automatic production of visuals to musical events is very difficult,
and I've yet to see a program which keeps me interested for more than a few

One program that I've used for (loop) music light shows is my own fractal
program HOP. (I'm very biased here of course.) 

HOP (a DOS based program) does realtime 'psychedelic' animations based on
certain kinds of strange attractors. Some of what can be done with it
resembles the slow minimalist light shows of Marian Zazeela which
accompanied La Monte Young's Dream House concerts. It can also be tuned to
do more vivid, fast stuff which would fit more into Techno/Ambient music. 

HOP can *not* automatically react to Midi or other sound events though.
When I used it to do live lightshows, I first put together a number of
preconfigured animation parameters for the sequence of pieces that the band
would play - I tried to find some imagery which would fit the general mood
of each of the pieces. Then while the band played, I sat beside the stage,
running these animations, and I pressed keys on the PC keyboard, doing a
certain amount of live modifications, changing parameters, colors, etc.,
giving it a little more live-ness and unpredictability. People liked it a
lot because HOP can do lots of different things none of which resemble your
familiar fractals, and it was easy to keep them interested.

>Part of the reason I'm wondering about all this is that my band is doing
>hour-long cable TV show in about a month, and I'm looking for some
>practical ways to add some visuals...

I don't know if HOP could be what you're looking for - maybe not, if you're
searching for a realtime automatic visual tool which produces visuals
depending on Midi events - but it might be an interesting program for you
or anyone else who is interested in complex abstract animations. For more
information and a gallery, check out the URL below.

Michael Peters   

HOP - Fractals in Motion ..."the only screen saver you'll ever want"