A Dot Dot Dot Release

So you get the “dot” release of your favorite software and you get to play with all the neat little new scratch-an-itch features the developers snuck in just for you on their way to fixing the crashing bugs with some esoteric surround-sound-multi-card-installation that only comes up at trade shows and ship-to-shore broadcast. As you discover the bitchin little featurettes you send off a glowing ream of emails to friends and the software company and you blog up a storm saying how brilliant it was to put the portamento button onto the mini piano roll, the “Save Copy As…” menu item is a dream, the new sensitivity of the ADSR envelope in the SoundfontPlayer on and on.

Until some slightly less than humble drunken Scottish teenager with a complexion that yearns for the subtlety of the Singing Detective points out in the comment section that every one of the features that you have just discovered in this interim release has been in the product for the last two major releases and unless you are, in fact, doing ship to shore broadcasting the update is really of little value.

Speaking of which: FL Studio (Fruity Loops) has released 4.5.2.

I have to say however: with it goes one of the biggest nit annoyances I have had with the step sequencer. Up until this release when you build up a rhythm pattern in the step sequencer view you could pick any note you want. Any note, that is, as long as it was Middle C (MIDI C5). If your channel is mapped to any other root note then your choices used to be either route around in the piano-drop-down-from-hell (pictured here) hoping to remember what the root note was (“D#3??? Bb7????”) or go to the proper piano roll and slide the mouse around the sideways keyboard scrolling up and down over 20 octaves hoping to hear the ‘ping’ of the triangle (“was it in the black keys?”). But by the grace of the powers that be makers of FL the step sequencer now defaults to a note that is actually audible.

…and there was much rejoicing in the Land of Rationale for once again, they had prevailed over the ruthless and merciless Kingdom of Irony.