Praxis LIVE build:120123

A short note that a new build, and first full release, of Praxis LIVE is now available for download from http://code.google.com/p/praxis/

This is a slightly late post as I was concentrating on getting it finished and uploaded prior to flying to Toronto on Wednesday. There’s a wide range of new features, including a live GUI editor, a MIDI control editor, and component editors. The project system, save support and hub management have been revisited to make them much more robust. Many components have been refactored to ensure a more consistent naming and ordering of controls and ports. And the UI has had a bit of spit and polish, with a consistent icon style and colour scheme throughout – it’s looking sexy now! :-)

Read the full release notes.

The image above shows one of the major additions to this release, the GUI editor. Praxis uses MigLayout and the edit overlay allows you to drag components from the palette into a running control panel, and move them around using the arrow keys. Component properties are accessible by double-clicking to open the component editor dialogs (or in the properties window). Drag and drop of existing components, and a UI for other layout features is coming soon.  And I’ll blog a bit more about the implementation as it develops.

NB. Some of the architectural changes mean that projects from EA builds may not be fully compatible.  The examples have all been updated.  It is intended to keep backwards compatibility from this release onwards.

So, it’s a full release – is it beta?

No, though it’s better! :-D  Simply put, a couple of blog posts I’ve read over the last month or so have convinced me that the whole alpha, beta, whatever cycle is just not right for a project like Praxis / Praxis LIVE that is continually evolving.  Different features are at a different stage of evolution – some are what I’d consider release quality, some are beta, and some are quite definitely temperamental, anti-social, and marked as such!  The important thing is that it’s usable, the basic architecture is complete, and the framework (Praxis) and visual editor (Praxis LIVE) are now in sync and developing concurrently.  So, from now on there will be frequent incremental releases on a 4-6 week timetable.

So, what’s next?

Lot’s more components (some of which are already in testing), improved OpenGL support (which didn’t make this release, sorry), and much better documentation (I have a project where I have to teach 2 people to use Praxis LIVE this next month, so that will help!).

And some blogging about the details; the fun (and occasional hair pulling) of Java audio / video; and the joys of hacking on top of the NetBeans platform, without which none of this would have been possible.

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