Tag Archives: Cycling ‘74

Cycling ’74: 20Concepts 00-04

In the spirit of the 20Objects lessons that I mentioned in the last post, Cycling ’74 also created (well, partially, in any case) a second series of tutorials called “20Concepts.” Perhaps the most important difference, aside from the fact that they’re not actually finished, is that they start not with the simplest object in the Max/MSP/Jitter universe – the button – but, instead, they start with one of the most complex – the Vizzie modules for video manipulations. Actually, I think it makes great sense, as it’s much more engaging to start with the big pictures. And, besides, the Vizzie modules are fun!

Here’s the complete list of (intended) tutorials in the 20Concepts curriculum:

  • 20Concepts Curriculum Overview (Done)
  • 01: Vizzie Part 1 (Done)
  • 02: Vizzie Part 2 (Done)
  • 03: Messages Part 1 (Done)
  • 04: Messages Part 2 (Nonexistent)
  • 05: Time
  • 06: MIDI
  • 07: More About Numbers
  • 08: Networks
  • 09: Subpatchers
  • 10: Presets and The Pattr Object
  • 11: Audio Generation
  • 12: Audio Filtering
  • 13: Audio Levels
  • 14: Audio FX
  • 15: Jitter Input
  • 16: Jitter FX
  • 17: Jitter Compositing
  • 18: OpenGL Part 1
  • 19: OpenGL Part 2
  • 20: Max Output

As with the 20Objects tutorials, these look like they might be short but, when you actually do all of the exercises, they are veeeery time-consuming. So far, I’ve only gotten through the first three, but they have been very, very helpful so far. I look forward to the rest!

Here are video walkthroughs of the lessons that I’ve done so far.


  • Cycling ’74 20Concepts, Lesson 00, 20Concepts Curriculum Overview; Lesson 01: Vizzie Part 1; Lesson 02: Vizzie Part 2, and Lesson 03: Messages Part 1 (13 exercises)
  • Lesson 04: Messages Part 2 is empty on the web page
  • Patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY
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Cycling ’74: 20Objects 00-03

Cycling ’74 has a fabulous set of tutorials under the rubric of “20Objects.” Unlike the 20Concepts curriculum, which starts very macro (with the Vizzie objects for video manipulation) but is ultimately incomplete, the lessons for 20Objects start at a very basic level (with the button object) and follow all the way through to Jitter objects. Here’s the complete list:

  • 20Objects Curriculum Overview (Done)
  • 01 – The Button Object (Done)
  • 02 – The Number Box (Done)
  • 03 – The Message Box (Done)
  • 04 – The Pack Object
  • 05 – The Metro Object
  • 06 – The Random Object
  • 07 – The Noteout Object
  • 08 – The Patcher Object
  • 09 – The Scale Object
  • 10 – The Pattr Object
  • 11 – The Table Object
  • 12 – The Cycle~ Object
  • 13 – The Buffer~ Object
  • 14 – The SVF~ Object
  • 15 – The Line~ Object
  • 16 – The jit.qt.movie Object
  • 17 – The jit.matrix Object
  • 18 – The jit.brcosa Object
  • 19 – The jit.xfade Object
  • 20 – The jit.gl.render Object

It turns out that while these all look like short lessons, they’re rather time-consuming if you do all of the steps. As such, I only got through the first three of the 20 lessons (and the introduction) before I had to go work on something else. So far, they do extremely elementary things – this is a button, this is a number box – but I’m learning things I didn’t know and I’m better for it.


  • Cycling ’74 20Objects: Lesson 01, The Button Object; Lesson 02, The Number Box; Lesson 03, The Message Box; and Lesson 04, The Pack Object (60 exercises)
  • Patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY
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Cycling ’74: Vizzie Quickstart Tutorials

Well, I’ve finished VJ Manzo‘s book Max/MSP/Jitter for Music but, in the true academic fashion, it served mostly to let me know how much I don’t know. (And that’s a compliment, VJ!) And so I’ve decided to start working on the tutorials that Cycling ’74, the creators of  Max/MSP/Jitter, have on their own website. I’m a linear kind of guy and I like to start at the very beginning, so I took at look at their “Quickstart” page on the fabulous Vizzie objects. Here’s my first take at what they offer.


  • Cycling ’74: Vizzie Quickstart Tutorials (1 exercise)
  • Jitter patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY
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MMJ4M 20: Compositions and Perceptions Tools

The very last chapter of VJ Manzo‘s excellent book Max/MSP/Jitter for Music is a final exhibition of some of the applied work that can be done with Max/MSP/Jitter, as well as a few of VJ’s own compositions with Max/MSP/Jitter. As before, these don’t have much to do with Jitter, per se, but they’re at the end of the book so they’re listed under my Jitter course. More significantly, I got some wonderful inspiration on how I could make my own music. (I also got a very informal hearing test with the mosquito patch, and I’m glad to say that I hear high frequencies just fine, thank you very much.)

The book is done but I will be referring back to it very, very often as I start doing my own from-a-blank-patcher programming. (By the way, I also just bought a print copy of the book to go with my Kindle version.) In addition, I’m going to go through the plethora of tutorials that Cycling ’74 offers on their own website as a way to continue and expand my training. All of this is very, very exciting!


  • Max/MSP/Jitter for Music, Ch. 20: Compositions and Perceptions Tools (0 exercises)
  • Patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY (Dead Link)
  • UPDATED LINK: Patches can now be downloaded from http://j.mp/1iy19Xl
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MMJ4M 05: Interactive Ear Training

Chapter 05 of VJ Manzo‘s book Max/MSP/Jitter for Music is about constructing an application for ear training with musical intervals. I have separate screenshots for each of the twelve steps in this exercise but I’ve condensed them into a single video below.


  • Max/MSP/Jitter for Music, Ch. 05: Interactive Ear Training (12 exercises)
  • Patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY (Dead Link)
  • UPDATED LINK: Patches can now be downloaded from http://j.mp/1iy19Xl
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MMJ4M 04: Scales and Chords

After a long, long time, I’m back and working on Max/MSP/Jitter. (I’ve got to get these incompletes finished!) I started chapter 4 of VJ Manzo‘s excellent book Max/MSP/Jitter for Music over a year ago and just finished it today. What’s funny  is how much my interests have changed since then – I’m much more interested in Max for music now than in using it just as a stepping stone to Jitter and data visualization. My goal is also to start using Max/MSP to work with my saxophone, as well as Ableton Live. Many, many good things.

Anyhow, that’s Chapter 04: Scales and Chords for now. Screenshots are above, YouTube links are below.


  • Max/MSP/Jitter for Music, Ch. 04: Scales and Chords (21 exercises)
  • Patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY (Dead Link)
  • UPDATED LINK: Patches can now be downloaded from http://j.mp/1iy19Xl
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MMJ4M 03: Math and Music

I’m going cross-eyed now that I’ve finally finished working through the fourteen thousand exercises in Chapter 03 of VJ Manzo‘s book Max/MSP/Jitter for Music. (Well, it felt like fourteen thousand. And, as VJ may drop in on this post, I’d like to emphasize that it’s an excellent book and very thorough. I think I just tried to do too many at one go.) Anyhow, after an extended break to work on other pressing matters (like an academic job application), it’s nice to be back into things. I can tell that Max has many, many more things in store for me.

That being said, here’s my progress report in pictures and video.


  • Max/MSP/Jitter for Music, Ch. 3: Math and Music (15 exercises)
  • Patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY (Dead Link)
  • UPDATED LINK: Patches can now be downloaded from http://j.mp/1iy19Xl
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MMJ4M 01: Introduction to Programming

In my previous post I reported on my independent study project with Processing. Now I’ll report on a second project, this one using the visual programming environment Max/MSP by Cycling ’74. (This project is being supervised by Music Professor Miguel Chuaqui, who, according to the map on the Cycling ’74 site, is the only person in the state of Utah who teaches Max/MSP.)

Anyhow, I’m using a lovely book entitled Max/MSP/Jitter for Music by VJ Manzo, who looks much more like a wild man rocker than someone who would write clean, crisp prose about programming (good for you!). I started reading this book back in November. I posted on it previously but now I’m ready to put up pictures of all of my patches, as the programs are called. So, the gallery at the top of this post includes the five patches from Chapter 1 and the videos below show them in action.

(I’ve also come across a blog with a total of nine entries from 2009 called “Learning Max/MSP: Using Max/MSP for a Generative Music Burning Man Project.” Excellent!)


  • Max/MSP/Jitter for Music, Ch. 0: Preface (0 exercises)
  • Max/MSP/Jitter for Music, Ch. 1: Introduction to Programming (5 exercises)
  • Patches can be downloaded from http://db.tt/GBYLb0vY (Dead Link)
  • UPDATED LINK: Patches can now be downloaded from http://j.mp/1iy19Xl
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Max & Me

A simple patch in the software Max

I just made my very first patch in Max (v. 6), otherwise known as Max/MSP/Jitter, which is brought to us by the fine people at Cycling ’74. I feel like a proud papa! (If you click on the circles — in Max, that is — they’ll light up in order of connection.) I’m just following along in V. J. Manzo’s book Max/MSP/Jitter for Music: A Practical Guide to Developing Interactive Music Systems for Education and More (where I’m part of the “and More” crowd). Here’s the book:

This is significant because I’m going to be taking a self-organized course next semester at the University of Utah in an attempt to learn how to (eventually) do data visualization with Max. Should be fun… and it’s very nice to be off and rolling!

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