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[Traverso-devel] Single track editor

From: Peter Hoppe
Subject: [Traverso-devel] Single track editor
Date: Tue, 02 Sep 2008 20:52:21 +0100
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20080724)

Hello again!

It's been a little break for me with Traverso as well. I set up a new development server to get a bit more order into my programming work. And then I had to do some other pressing project. I'm now more free again and can increase Traverso work.

I had a little think about the feature I wanted to set up (selection of parts of the sound, cutting, copying, pasting etc., and I came to the conclusion that the multi track view isn't a very good place for that. The multitrack editor offers already many features, and to add these features may well over burden it to breaking point (i.e. it's getting too complex for the user; more shortcuts where almost all key combinations are already taken up). It would be better (in my opinion) to set up some kind of single track editor where one can do all these tasks and more, such as filtering, noise reduction and so on. This would follow the Cool edit / Audition tradition. Other work stations, such as Cubase also have got such a kind of single track editor. With this single track view we would be able to do all the fine preproduction tasks. The multitrack editor could meanwhile be focused on the more complex assembly work.

I would design the single track editor as a destructive editor, i.e. actions performed will change the actual sound file worked on. I don't think this is a problem; again, Cool edit and audition follow the same model of a destructive single track editor and a non destructive multitrack editor. This fits well into the work flow when working with audio projects (Especially in Radio):

* Sound is often recorded in suboptimal surroundings (e.g. noisy street, cheap microphone, or from a noisy source such as a crackly vinyl or cassette).

* Most such sound needs processing /before/ it can be used in the assembly stage (multitrack). Any sound used in the multitrack editor should be optimized already. Especially when recording interviews, cutting is very important (we say that for a five minute interview we aim at recording eight minutes of material).

In short - when working with sound for radio, lots of stuff gets simply thrown away and will not be used. That's why it would not make sense to use a non-destructive editor for these initial editing tasks. The original recording is edited and then the edited result is used. The original recording will never be used again. It's very much like working with a text document (text processors are destructive editors as well).

So - that's my rationale. If Traverso gets augmented with a single track editor we would have a complete product that is well suited for audio work from importing and editing the original recordings to assembling the final product (such as a feature).The single track editor would be used for ironing out the faults in the recordings, and the multitrack editor would be used for sound assembly.

Usage wise, I would design the single track editor in such a way that the user experience is very close to that of Cool edit. The single track view of cool edit beats everything else when it comes to usability.

Just to let you know.


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