What do you think about this project?

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What do you think about this project?

Postby thamarok » 2006-11-07 10:27

Hello!

I am enjoying Debian very much (especially after I made a succesful custom kernel) :D
I am a hard-core music junkie and I have been thinking of starting a commercial project (but there will be also some free software).

I am going to make powerful music creation software and audio software.
Some ideas that I have in my head:

Flash Radio
A program that let's you to manage your own radio station. You will get a management program and a pre-configured flash file (based on Shockwave Flash 7). The installation is simple, you upload the flash file to your webserver, embed it to one of your pages and when a user goes to your page, he/she can access your radio station and hear music/broadcasts/whatever.

Features:
Support for direct-recording from microphone.
Organize playlists with ease.
"Realtime" playback for the user.
"On Air" switch to turn the radio station on/off.

Linux Music Studio
A realtime sequencer for creating real 32-bit music (no MIDI stuff, real MP3 stuff). I will implement a synthesizer engine for this program, so it will make music through synthesizers. I will create lots of synthesizers (drum machines, guitar, bass, 8-bit sound synthesizers..) in a standalone version (which will export to WAV or MP3) and a plugin version which will work in my sequencer.

Features:
Easy-to-use API for own synthesizer creation.
Support for "effect" plugins (reverb, resonance)
Supports ALSA, OSS and JACK.
A skinnable interface.
Support for WAV, OGG and MP3 files to act like synthesizers.
Will have a wrapper for VST synths (It will be unstable though)
Support for external MIDI devices.
Use your keyboard as a MIDI device to sequence music.
Support for importing MIDI files to make a quick remix.

LinuxDJ
A DJ program for real hard-core music junkies. Remix your WAV, OGG and MP3 files and give superior effects to the lame sounds :D

Features:
2 "discs" which you can jam with your mouse to be a "real" DJ.
Can use the same effects as those for Linux Music Studio.
A powerful Audacity-like sound editor.
Support for adding WAV, OGG MP3 files to the beat (for example drum loops, etc..)
Standard MIDI-like functions (change tempo, resonance, pitch, etc..)

---------------------------------

Well, what do you think?
I am currently developing these programs and I am going to publish them as commercial software. Do you think I could succeed?

Please post your comments, feedback and whatever you like.
Thanks!
thamarok
 

Postby Grifter » 2006-11-07 16:26

yeah, music creation software is an area which could be vastly improved, so i think it's a good idea
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Postby thamarok » 2006-11-07 16:33

Thanks, but would you think I could sell that software?
I was thinking about 20-30€ per product, so it won't be much, but it comes to quality and so far I don't even have a stable beta, but time goes on, so let's wait and see what happens.

The good thing in my programming knowledge is, that I don't know C, C++ or BASIC, but I know a hell a lot of ASM. Assembly is the best language if you like complex sources :D

Why assembly? Because then I have the power to do ANYTHING the processor can do :)
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Postby Grifter » 2006-11-07 16:58

I have no idea if you can sell it or not, I don't make music so I don't know what would be required in a program, or what would make it "superior", but if you make the software good enough then I've no doubt you can sell it for any price you want; that said however

I can only guess about this, but the "big" musicians prolly use windows because the software for it is available there, and the linux users who'd use the software might just be regular mortals who would favour a lower price (:

I don't know, it makes sense in my brain anyway hehe
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Postby thamarok » 2006-11-07 17:54

That about Window$ is right, that's why I want to make better software for Linux, but with a lower price :P

And music making is fun, that is, if you understand what you are doing :)
thamarok
 

Postby Grifter » 2006-11-07 18:07

I've tried to make some music with skale ( www.skale.org ), but I am just not very good at it, I'm much better at listening to music (:
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Postby ajdlinux » 2006-11-08 20:06

A few things I think you would need to think about:

* Assembly is rather hard to program GUIs and other things in - you WILL need to use a bit of C, C++ or something like that.
* Musicians mostly use Windows, there they have their really expensive pro stuff.
* While many Linux users (not me) will use free proprietary stuff, not many are willing to pay.
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Postby thamarok » 2006-11-09 11:35

Ok then, I'll clear something up.

1. I love assembly very much! GUI making isn't that hard, even QT applications are easy to program. I just apt-get the desired dev packages (like GTK or QT), then I'll import the .so library in my ASM program and the coding starts! The sources are not big, the smallest source for a fully functional QT application with a nice GUI was about 624 lines. I don't need C or other stuff like that. Other people love other languages and other not.

2. My goal is not to take musicians to the Linux side, but to give Linux users the chance to make cool music.

3. I am also going to release demo versions with some limits like a maximum number of synths (maybe 5 or 6) and a maximum track length of 45 seconds. Good for free, isn't it?
thamarok
 

Postby ajdlinux » 2006-11-09 19:37

1. Yeah, but you're talking about a massively complex GUI, possibly needing custom widgets. It also means portability = 0. As the world switches to AMD64, that may be a disadvantage later.
2. There is already a lot of software available - just look at http://dynebolic.org and have a look at the software in that distro. It's not just the software, you also need skill.
3. Not when there's Free-as-in-DFSG-free stuff available.

Also note that if you want to use Qt, then be prepared to buy a $2000 licence...
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Postby Grifter » 2006-11-10 00:33

ajdlinux wrote:3. Not when there's Free-as-in-DFSG-free stuff available.


But there isn't, that's the whole point, if his software is really good then people will get it, there are quite a lot of people that are musicians and are linux enthusiasts too, and would love to make the change if it was possible

but your software would have to be killer ;)
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Postby thamarok » 2006-11-10 11:01

ajdlinux: before writing any comments, let me do the application and then you can criticise. I still find it a good idea and who said Linux software should always be open-source?

I have many test machines, two of them has Intel Core 2 Duo, one of them has Intel Core 2 Extreme and the last two ones have AMD64, so I have quite a good "studio" to make programs.

EDIT: Forgot to say, I have already a QT license. That's why it is easier for me to make GUI stuff (GTK is so hard I can't even see my eyes :))
EDIT2: Dyne:bolic doesn't seem to have that great audio software. Sure Linux has some audio creation software like Ardour and Rosegarden, but they are not that good to make great music like in FL Studio for Window$. That's my point.
thamarok
 

Postby Lavene » 2006-11-10 14:35

thamarok wrote:ajdlinux: before writing any comments, let me do the application and then you can criticise. I still find it a good idea and who said Linux software should always be open-source?


There is of course up to you to choose how to licence your program but if I may I'd like to offer my opinion on that:

The average Linux user really care about how the product is licenced and many of us are fairly pasionate about making sofware free (as in freedom). A closed sourced, comercial licenced Linux program really have a very limited userbase potential. You see... if we didn't care about the heart values of GNU/ Linux we'd probably never bothered messing with it and rather stayed with Microsoft.

So when you decide to make a closed source comercial product you don't compete with existing Linux programs like Rosegarden and the like, you actually compete with Windows software. Because if you're going to shell out serious bucks on a software package you care more about functionality than you care about the platform it will run on. And the high end musician will already have a handfull of programs and gizmos running under Windows.

It might just work though, if you create one heck of a music suite but I highly doubt it. I'm fairly sertain that if you want to 'steal' market shares from the Windows platform, proprietary software is not the way to go...

Just my humble opinion. As I said, you are free to do whatever you like regarding licencing of your own software. After all... this IS Linux ;)

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Postby thamarok » 2006-11-10 15:07

Argh.. my head hurts!

This open-source thing is taking me to court... Do you think I could succeed by selling the sourcecode of my applications? For me, that doesn't make much sense, :?
EDIT: Do you know what? I am going to make free Linux versions of my applications (but, closed-source)! :D
I should have a stable alpha release of Linux Music Studio at the end of the year, so be prepared to make some music ;)
I am still studying the Shockwave Flash 7 specifications, so Flash Radio will need to wait a little.
And as I'm developing Linux Music Studio, I'll see how far I get in LinuxDJ.

Now as I know once again a little more from marketing, could someone tell me how to still get money? I am thinking of advertisements, but how much is the amount that you get monthly (approximately)?
And a donation button would be good... Or?

Thanks!

EDIT: I am still thinking of making commercial products for Linux, because I need some extra money, because my intake isn't that high.
thamarok
 

Postby Lavene » 2006-11-10 15:45

thamarok wrote:Argh.. my head hurts!

Sorry (I'm an open source fanatic... don't listen to fanatics, they make your head hurt :P )

This open-source thing is taking me to court... Do you think I could succeed by selling the sourcecode of my applications? For me, that doesn't make much sense, :?

I don't know if you can make money of open source software. But alot of people insists you can.
EDIT: Do you know what? I am going to make free Linux versions of my applications (but, closed-source)! :D

Yeah... well, why not do it other way around? Sell the software and give away the sourcecode? ;)
I should have a stable alpha release of Linux Music Studio at the end of the year, so be prepared to make some music ;)

Sure! I'm ready... if it's GPL'ed that is ;)
Now as I know once again a little more from marketing, could someone tell me how to still get money? I am thinking of advertisements, but how much is the amount that you get monthly (approximately)?
And a donation button would be good... Or?

A donation button is a good idea for a free (as in beer) product.
EDIT: I am still thinking of making commercial products for Linux, because I need some extra money, because my intake isn't that high.

Hey my friend, that is your god given right and never forget that no matter what old grumpy GPL fanatics like me say. We all need to make a living and if you can make one writing and selling commercial proprietary software it's great. I just wanted you to know that a whole bunch of Linux users (me included) probably will not buy it. Not because it costs money, but because we (the grumpy GPL fanatics) for some reason insist on having the right to do whatever we want with our software. So it's really simple: if you are not prepared to give me that freedom I will not buy your product. That is *my* right... we both win! :D

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Postby ajdlinux » 2006-11-11 20:00

Grifter wrote:But there isn't, that's the whole point, if his software is really good then people will get it, there are quite a lot of people that are musicians and are linux enthusiasts too, and would love to make the change if it was possible

but your software would have to be killer ;)


There *is* software available, it just isn't brilliant. I'll have to wait for him to finish the app before I can say whether it will be better or not. As Lavene said commercial software like this has to compete with Windows software, not just Rosegarden and other Linux software.

I would guesstimate that 90% of desktop Linux users (except perhaps Xandros/Linspire/Mepis-type users) have not paid for Linux software - most paid proprietary Linux software is server software.

thamarok, if you want to make software like Windows-quality software, you'd have to be a good programmer... especially in assembly...

grifter, Free Software improves when people contribute - I can't say what the Linux music software scene will be like when thamarok finishes his programs, but I would think the free software out there will have improved.
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