Forester II, a complete re-design… Again.

Saturday, January 22nd, 2011 | Building Things, Forester, Max/MSP, Music!, Software News

Forester II

For those of you who don’t know Forester, it’s a quirky audio software application I made several years ago in which the user imports soundfiles and then navigates through the ‘forest’ of coloured discs which creates a changing soundscape. It’s actually very simple to use and quite mysterious as you never really know what the output is going to be.  Forester was actually a big hit, and is still used by lot’s of artists and crops up on numerous albums since it’s release in 2006.

A picture is worth a thousand words.

ahh Forester 1.4 looking cute

I’ve been trying to make a follow-up pice for several years, and have demoed several approaches, which up to now have all lacked the special magic that Forester the first possessed.  I think finally I have found a way of making Forester II work so here are a few pictures and a little video of my interface so far.

You’ll notice from the video above that the main thing about the interface is that there appears to be no interface. I want the visual aspect of the software to be very filmic, almost like interacting with a music video maybe… I like this idea a lot, and hopefully, when the software is ready, so will you!

Here’s another video, this time in ‘Bad Video’ mode, somewhere in-between a worn-out betamax and a crashing ZX Spectrum.

Take care,

Leafcutter John.

19 Comments to Forester II, a complete re-design… Again.

Sean Woodward
January 22, 2011

Great to see development on this software – the radical GUI is a major, “think different” moment and I look forward to the opportunity to experience it directly myself one day soon.

Rui Guerreiro
January 22, 2011

Drool!! Please sign me up for beta testing list (if you have such a thing)… Looks amazing, mate.

Leafcutter John
January 22, 2011

Rui, are you PC or Mac, do you have Max/MSP?

Rui Guerreiro
January 22, 2011

Me again! You know what would make it even better? An iPad app to control the software. Seems logical, no interface, no mouse, only sound at the tip of your fingers… Any chance of that happening?
Anyway, it looks great so far.

Rui Guerreiro
January 22, 2011

Hey, just saw your question. I’m on a Mac, but I’m not that good with Max/Msp. I only use it occasionally with Max for Live… But I can try. I’m always looking to improve.

Leafcutter John
January 22, 2011

Just wondered about Max Rui – i’m not scouting for programmers. I’m happy if you want to test the application when it’s ready though. As far as iPad control, i think it would make sense to have the whole app on the iPad, unfortunately this involves me buying an iPad, and then learning Objective-C programming. Which is no small task. It might happen but not any time soon. There is still much work to do to make the Max/MSP version so I’ll deal with that and then look at control methods.

Leafcutter John
January 22, 2011

Oh i forgot to mention that i added a new video to the original post. I’d like to introduce you to “Bad Video” mode!

Rui Guerreiro
January 23, 2011

That last one looks sick! Can’t wait…

gry
January 23, 2011

What a beauty! Can’t wait to give it a try. Wish it could load a bit longer samples that Forrester1.
That generative patch thing you posted would make ver2 even more awsome. Great work, thanks!

Richard Eigner
January 26, 2011

also happy to join in for some beta testing! i have both mac and pc and max.
looks really exciting!

Alex Botten
January 26, 2011

Looks amazing John. Quick question – I’m still kicking it old school with Tiger, will this be runnable on 10.4?

Leafcutter John
January 26, 2011

Gry, i think longer samples are a distinct possibility. This version will be a totally different beast so the way you approach it will be different also. You will be able to create different kinds of “particles” in forester II, each one has it’s own behaviour and sound type. Once a file is loaded Forester will be able to access all of it, but it will look for specific areas of interest in the file and use those if it finds them, the things it looks for will depend on the type of particle it is. It’s gonna be simpler than it sounds!

Richard, ok noted.

Alex, I don’t see why it won’t work on 10.4 i think processor speed is more of an issue, the graphics don’t come cheap in that sense. I’m working on ways to reduce the load as much as is possible, and there will probably be less cpu intensive graphics modes to choose from.

Alex Botten
January 27, 2011

Cool, I’m very excited to try this. And I have to echo the other posters who mentioned the iPad….(though I don’t own one, an iPod Touch is about my limit!)

CB
February 10, 2011

I’m really looking forward to Forester II.

Lord Gypsie Joe of Davenstock
February 20, 2011

I’m sending you positive vibes via a psychic link over the astral plane.

God speed! I await the arrival of forester mark II with great anticipation

gry
February 23, 2011

Couldn’t state it better than Lord Gypsie Joe :D
Thanks for your comment. Cheers!

PrKr
April 1, 2011

Is the forester II going to be PC compatable as well?

gry
May 8, 2011

What if FII used live input? Wouldn’t it make an awsome improv tool?

jonathan segel
December 9, 2011

ah, cool. Looking forward to it. I meant to mention to you that I used some forester on a CD i made some years back.. If you glean email addresses from the input here, let me know, I’ll send you a link to the music. or a cd, if you want~

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