A defence of the straight line

classic Classic list List threaded Threaded
4 messages Options
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|  
Report Content as Inappropriate

A defence of the straight line

Will Godfrey
Warning: I've been thinking!

There seems to be a trend in recent years for everything to be represented in
various curves. They are very pretty and (possibly) technically more correct,
but is that what the user wants?

Take a simple amplitude envelope for example, showing intensity V time. Now
that is often shown as a logarithmic curve, but the whole idea behind such a
curve was to give our ears a *linear* impression of intensity change, so why do
we now give our ears one impression but our eyes something completely different?

--
Will J Godfrey
http://www.musically.me.uk
Say you have a poem and I have a tune.
Exchange them and we can both have a poem, a tune, and a song.
_______________________________________________
Linux-audio-user mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.linuxaudio.org/listinfo/linux-audio-user
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|  
Report Content as Inappropriate

Re: A defence of the straight line

Alessio Degani
Hi Will,

On 09/08/2017 14:14, Will Godfrey wrote:

> Warning: I've been thinking!
>
> There seems to be a trend in recent years for everything to be represented in
> various curves. They are very pretty and (possibly) technically more correct,
> but is that what the user wants?
>
> Take a simple amplitude envelope for example, showing intensity V time. Now
> that is often shown as a logarithmic curve, but the whole idea behind such a
> curve was to give our ears a *linear* impression of intensity change, so why do
> we now give our ears one impression but our eyes something completely different?
I don't know if I've understand correctly what you mean, but I try to
reply :)

Because our ears just work like that.
But I think there are only a metter of visualization. For example,
complression curves are often reprented using dB scale. So that,
straight line correspond to a straight "feel" to our ears.
With that in mind, one could represent amplitude envelope just like
that. The problem here is that an amp envelope can be 0, that means
minus infinite dB -> the scale of the graph must be "mapped" in order to
suite clear visualization.

Cheers

a.
_______________________________________________
Linux-audio-user mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.linuxaudio.org/listinfo/linux-audio-user
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|  
Report Content as Inappropriate

Re: A defence of the straight line

Ralf Mardorf
On Wed, 9 Aug 2017 15:03:21 +0200, Alessio Degani wrote:

>Hi Will,
>
>On 09/08/2017 14:14, Will Godfrey wrote:
>> Warning: I've been thinking!
>>
>> There seems to be a trend in recent years for everything to be
>> represented in various curves. They are very pretty and (possibly)
>> technically more correct, but is that what the user wants?
>>
>> Take a simple amplitude envelope for example, showing intensity V
>> time. Now that is often shown as a logarithmic curve, but the whole
>> idea behind such a curve was to give our ears a *linear* impression
>> of intensity change, so why do we now give our ears one impression
>> but our eyes something completely different?  
>I don't know if I've understand correctly what you mean, but I try to
>reply :)
>
>Because our ears just work like that.
>But I think there are only a metter of visualization. For example,
>complression curves are often reprented using dB scale. So that,
>straight line correspond to a straight "feel" to our ears.
>With that in mind, one could represent amplitude envelope just like
>that. The problem here is that an amp envelope can be 0, that means
>minus infinite dB -> the scale of the graph must be "mapped" in order
>to suite clear visualization.

IMO the reason for this is business sense. I don't give a
damn about it. Those fancy graphs are completely irrelevant to me. I
never ever would even care about a K-meter, let alone about any obscure
graph. Those are just fashions. It's possible to provide those fancy
graphs and consumers like it. Good GUIs for audio would look like those
for military gear, planes and ships. Btw. seemingly even digital
natives, at lest those who are blind, are still able to make and mix
music without a two or more 24" 16:9 display, showing all kinds of
meters and graphs.
_______________________________________________
Linux-audio-user mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.linuxaudio.org/listinfo/linux-audio-user
Reply | Threaded
Open this post in threaded view
|  
Report Content as Inappropriate

Re: A defence of the straight line

Fons Adriaensen-3
On Wed, Aug 09, 2017 at 03:35:46PM +0200, Ralf Mardorf wrote:

> ...
> I never ever would even care about a K-meter, let alone about any obscure
> graph. Those are just fashions.

K-meters just show a linear color bar (RMS) and a dot (peak). Couldn't
be simpler... What are you talking about ?

Of course they can be implemted in different ways. Just compare jkmeter
and the K-meters you find in Ardour. The difference is in the details,
but they matter.

> It's possible to provide those fancy graphs and consumers like it.

Maybe. I'm not so sure about that.

> Good GUIs for audio would look like those for military gear, planes
> and ships.

With that I'd agree 100%. A GUI should be purely functional, with
layout, widgets, colors, fonts, etc. designed in way that provides
the user with the information that matters without him/her having
to actively look for it. A lot of the 'communication' provided by
a good GUI is subliminal, it works without the user being aware
of it.

I've studied 'glass cockpit' user interfaces (the ones you find
in Airbusses and Boeings, not the 'amateur' ones) in depth. They
lack any form of eye candy. But they are extremely informative
and easy to read, even in conditions when information overload
is a real risk. And that's by design.

Ciao,

--
FA

A world of exhaustive, reliable metadata would be an utopia.
It's also a pipe-dream, founded on self-delusion, nerd hubris
and hysterically inflated market opportunities. (Cory Doctorow)

_______________________________________________
Linux-audio-user mailing list
[hidden email]
https://lists.linuxaudio.org/listinfo/linux-audio-user
Loading...