Blog
News, thoughts, and other items of interest.

December 17, 2010     Happy Holidays!

Hope you all have a great holiday, and we're looking forward to some great developments in 2011.   Some ideas brewing in the pot include GPU access, audio DSP functionality, and a whole slew of general purpose objects.   While these are only ideas at this point, it will be good to take this platform that has been in development and use it to create something unique and fun with it.   Talk to you all after the New Year!


December 03, 2010     Misc

A bunch of miscellaneous fixes and additions, such as automatic tab switching and automatic scrolling when performing a drag and drop.   Made some cut and paste improvements, as well as created some additional GUI widgets.   Will likely be in this mode for several more weeks to help clean up some of the many new additions to the program.


November 19, 2010     GUI Widgets -- Proof!

I feel like there's been lots of talk about the new GUI widget features and user creatable user interfaces, but we haven't been able to show much of anything as of yet.   The proof of concept was written a while ago now, but getting everything to start working in a meaningful way took quite a while.   There's still quite a lot more to finish under the hood before this is in a releasable state, but yes, it's coming along nicely... and it's pretty cool!



November 01, 2010     GUI Widgets

GUI Development is proceeding, and a library of usable user interface widgets is emerging.   Continuing to enhance drag and drop functionality to simplify the creation and modification of GUI widgets.


October 17, 2010     Server and Web Upgrades

Upgraded web servers over the weekend.   Experienced some minor hiccups with this, but things should be running smoothly now.   Everyone is returning back to good health too. Development on the user creatable user interfaces feature has finally resumed.


October 07, 2010     The Joys of School

One of the joys of September, is all of the various sicknesses that get brought into the office from school, now that it's back in session.   With that, our developer has unfortunately been only able to participate part-time for the last couple of weeks, and is completely off this week.   Definitely slows down progress here, but hopefully everyone will be back in full-force in the coming weeks.


September 30, 2010     GUI's ... Continued

Continuing on the work described below, making the underlying additions to support user creatable user interfaces.


September 17, 2010     User Creatable User Interfaces

Started working on enabling the user to create their own user interface, which directly interacts with the underlying dataflow application.   We are pretty excited about this particular feature, as it allows the user to create a visual front-end for their particular application very quickly, and very easily!   This new feature is using the same intuitive drag and drop methodology used throughout the existing application, and creating and editing can all be done while the underlying dataflow application is still actively running.


September 03, 2010     Tidying Up

Added a bunch more MIDI objects, including a cool virtual keyboard, a GM/GM2 Tone selector, and other additional common MIDI command helper objects.   The creation of these resulted in many additional GUI speed and functionality improvements.   Will continue with this current development phase for a bit longer, since it is resulting in some good improvements.



August 20, 2010     MIDI Support

Made lots of program advancements the past couple of weeks, especially with regards to the GUI.   Took a bit of a fun detour the last couple of days and created a set of objects to enable MIDI input and output.   More supporting MIDI objects will be added at a later date, but it's pretty cool to be able to communicate with external MIDI enabled music hardware.



August 05, 2010     Back Into Development

Added smooth automatic scrolling to make particular object windows visible.   This feature really enhances debugging, ensuring the currently signalling object is visible.


July 30, 2010     Summer Holidays

Development has been intertwined with summer holidays here.   Made some nice improvements with docking windows, along with some additional miscellaneous bug fixes.   Also climbed a couple of mountains, did some rock climbing, and learned that running is not the perfect substitute for keeping in good mountain biking shape (ouch).


July 16, 2010     Collapsing Objects

Some of the test dataflow objects we've created can get a bit large, especially if there are lots of object connections.   So, we added a button to collapse an object to make it really small.   This way, when you're all done editing a specific object, you can shrink it with the touch of a button.   Of course, it's equally just as easy to expand it again by depressing the same button.



July 09, 2010     Changing Object Properties at Runtime

Something we are striving to achieve is to be able to perform all object tasks while the application is in run mode.   In fact, the user should never have to pause the application at any time, unless the user is debugging a specific sequence of object signals.   Here's an example of changing the UI of an integer object at runtime, giving it a scrollbar the user can use to change the parameter value.



June 25, 2010     GIMP Rocks!

We've had the pleasure of using GIMP for editing images, creating icons, and doing all sorts of application and web graphics.  It is a fantastic program, and a big thank you to the developers who maintain and continuously improve such a fine program.  If you haven't yet discovered this amazing program, check it out here at their official site.


June 11, 2010     Writing an entire GUI library from scratch is time consuming

Here at Mistal Research Inc., we conceived the idea to make dataflow programming easier to utilize, because we think this programming methodology is pretty cool.   When deciding upon how we were going to wrap our own user interface around the processing engine, it was ultimately decided that we would write our own.   We wanted to give it the freedom to run within several different types of application environments, and as far as we found, no other user interface library could handle these environments we were envisioning.   As a result, we are busy spending quite a bit of time reinventing the wheel making our application work as a standard app, but the future is looking bright for these other possibilities now.




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