Articles for VIDEOFILMEN: Scoring your own original Themes and Music for Film

videofilmen Ausgabe 06/2016

In 2016 I was given the opportunity to write a series of clinics on the topic of music for film and how to go about composing your own themes and score from scratch to finished production. Areas covered include an exemplary setup of required gear, using a digital audio workstation like Apple’s Logic Studio X, using sound packages e.g. Native Instruments’ ACTION STRINGS and ACTION STRIKES via MIDI controller keyboards such as e.g. Native Instruments’ S Series, audio signal flow/ bus routing and grouping of instruments and tracks, use of effects and inserts, mixing and mastering and exporting a project to commonly used digital file formats such as e.g. AIFF, WAV, MP3 etc. My contributions appeared in printed as well as in digital format. For the latter, see an exemplary file here and if inclined download as PDF.

MacOS X Yosemite and high WindowServer CPU usage – Nitai

accessibility on yosemite

Here’s a “life saver” article on how to fix the high window server usage on Macs after installing Mac OS X 10.10 “Yosemite”. The trick is to find the transparency setting in the general preferences and turn it all the way down:

MacOS X Yosemite and high WindowServer CPU usage – Nitai.

By default the “Reduce transparency” checkbox is not checked, which results in the “Window Server” process to max out CPU usage – clearly poor engineering as it means that the Mac OS X graphic user interface hogs as much CPU power as it can get, thus effectively rendering the machine unusable to the point, where you might want to ditch Yosemite. What that tells those users who depend on the accessibility settings – I leave that to your own reasoning…. Here’s to hoping that Apple will address the issue in an update – and that this update lands asap. After you’ve followed the instructions in the article, your Mac will return to being a usable machine.

(Thanks to Dietmar Liehr in that case, who brought this article to my attention as I was indeed in the process of running a full backup, wiping out disk contents and going back to Maverick…)

Chromebook vs. Mac?

I happened upon this article on G+ today:

7 Reasons Your Church Should Stop Buying Apple Computers and Move to Chromebooks | unseminary.

While I’m reluctant as to Rich Birch’s reasoning being appliccable to creative people and content producers other than writers, I do think that he has a good point or two as far as the expense-productivity-ratio is concerned, particularly in regards to field staff, who live in the browser and on email most of the time. And ironically, it was the very company he pitches Chromebooks against that introduced the digital hub strategy as the precursor to the cloud strategy more than a decade ago. Ten years later it turns out that the late Steve Job lived up to his enigma of a visionary once again as the industry at large and Apple in particular continue to shift more and more of their data, apps and overall processing power previously residing on standalone computers to the cloud.

I think it naturally follows from above linked sources that you don’t require a Mac or other standalone PC-like device any longer to harness the power that resides in the cloud. If Rich Birch is happy using a Chromebook, fair enough. An iPad or other tablet might do just as well.