Moments in mobile music: 1 – miniMusic

As I mentioned yesterday I’m planning to talk about 10 ‘moments’ in mobile music that were important for me, and number 1 is miniMusic. It was a very big impact on my own personal journey into mobile music.

In fact, if I look back at the last few years I’ve cited miniMusic in lots of times and important moments.

When I look back to PalmSounds 5 year anniversary I was talking about miniMusic too. I don’t know what kind of percentage of overall posts on PalmSounds are about miniMusic, but I would guess it’s comparatively high.

Of course miniMusic did venture ever so briefly into the iOS world with the PianoFly Pro Synth, which was to be followed up with Tympanum, although that sadly never arrived. In fact they had big plans in the early iOS days back in 2008, which is when I did an interview with Chad from miniMusic.

I’ve been talking about miniMusic and Palm OS apps for a long time but I keep on reminding people about those days. Even in December last year I wrote a long piece in response to a question from Marc Weidenbaum from Disquiet all about early Palm OS apps and using them.

So you may be wondering why it’s so important:

When I first bought a PDA, a Palm III I had no idea that it could be used in any way to make music. In fact I pretty much used it just for being organised. Or at least that’s what I did to start with. As I started to discover sites like PalmGear and others I found a lot of different uses for my Palm and then I started to find some musical uses too. It was the beginning of something amazing, something that I’d be sharing with you for a long time!

miniMusic was a little revelation to me. I can’t tell you how much time I spent checking out every page on that site and following up every link. I found out everything there was to find out about making music on a PDA, and most of that was before PalmSounds was even started.

So that was where I began, and I can talk about music on a PDA for just about as long as you want (Mr Concreted0g will confirm this)!

My next moment will continue my journey in mobile music, and it’ll be with you in the next day or so …

Palm’s new OS?

So Palm announce today that they have been working on their own new OS based on a linux kernel. This leaves me with lots of questions.

  • When will palm bring out new hardware and will it have the new OS on it?
  • How compatible will old apps be with the new OS?
  • Will the new OS give new musical possibilities?
  • Will a linux kernel mean it is easier to port existing linux music apps to the new palm OS?

I’m sure that more details will appear as the days go on, and I dare say that there will be lots of speculation on how this new OS will change the palm ecosystem.

MOVEMENTO 0.1

This has been around for some time, and I don’t know if it is ever going to be updated or developed further.

MOVEMENTO FEATURES:

  • Powered by MODULA Audio Engine
  • MOD song player
  • Background playback
  • Powersave mode
  • Playlist
  • FREEWARE (always nice)

MOVEMENTO REQUIRES:

  • PalmOS 5.x powered device (SndStream API required)
  • MCA2 tool by CliePet for Sony Clie NX/NZ/TG series devices
  • SD/MMC/MemoryStick card

Not all devices MOVEMENTO works on are displayed here!!!

QOTD: What handheld platform is best for music?

For me the two main platforms for mobile music making are:

  • Palm OS
  • Windows Mobile

But I have to admit that I know very little about other platforms and how they shape up. I know that there was a tracker for Symbian which I did write about ages ago, but I don’t know of very much else.

Also, I think that as Styletap takes off and allows more and more Palm applications to run under Window Mobile it will become easier to run everything in one place as it were rather than keeping and maintaining multiple platforms.

Windows is still developing and moving forward, although, not in leaps exactly, but Palm don’t seem to be doing too much of anything right now.

Sure ALP is coming along, but what will that do for existing applications? Will it bring in more developers? Will it bring new possibilities in terms of hardware from palm or ease of development from ACCESS? Will it mean that Linux music applications are easier to port over to ALP?

The other possibility is that Palm will kick off their own OS separate from ACCESS and ALP altogether.

So, what does the future hold?

Views?

PocketBeat

I like the look of PocketBeat. it has a nice feel to it and I like the idea. But I never play live enough for it to be worth buying. I like the idea of a palm based drum machine, but again, I don’t need another one as I already have three that’ll do the job.

Having said all of that I like the functionality of PocketBeat, I can imagine it in action and it being really useful. I just wish I had a use for it.

MIDI day on Palm Sounds : Music Studio 1.0

I was quite excited when this came out and I bought it too, but I have to say it was a bit of a let down. It arrived in July 2003 and there doesn’t seem to have been an update since.

In effect it was a simple sequencer using GM sounds where available. I used it on my Sony Clie NX73V, which was fine as it had a GM chip in it already.

Here’s the blurb anyway. Sorry, no screen shots.

Music Studio is a unique polyphonic music composer that allows you to create beautiful melodies for your Alarms, Mobile phone ringtones, and Midi files for your PC.

With enhanced sound (Sony Clies), Music Studio utilises the 100s of instruments and multitrack features to create awesome original compositions on your device. These can be imported to your PC or even beamed to your Nokia/Siemens mobile phone.

Devices without enhanced sound can still enjoy the rich features and great graphics of this Music composer, listening to their polyphonic creations through their mobile phones or PC!

Music Studio has a great special introductory price of $12.95!

Features include:

  • Create & edit polyphonic melodies!
  • Compose upto 8 different tracks per melody!
  • Over 100 instruments to utilise!
  • Save & manage alarms on your alarm database!
  • Import melodies as Midis to your PC!
  • Beam melodies as ringtones to your mobile!
  • Convert each track to standard RTTTL format!
  • Great graphics
  • Easy to use, for beginners, amateurs and professionals

Psytexx

I really must get my head around using Psytexx at some point very soon. It is the one Palm app I just haven’t managed to get into, and I sort of regret it.

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