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Recent Posts

1
alot of people say the 1st gen B+W G3 always causes hard drive corruption
but this may or may not be true; it could be that its the cause of people trying to put 2 drives on a controller that only supported 1! see comments below:

Quote
EDIT: Btw, I just realized that my previous post about the Rev1 IDE controller saying it
"doesn't allow Master/slave or slave period" is very confusing. I should have type it as:
The Rev1 IDE controller is a one-drive controller, period.
1) It doesn't allow a Master with a slave, meaning two drives on a two-drive PATA/IDE ribbon
(to do so then data corruption is predicted).
2) It doesn't allow a one-drive ribbon (or a two-drive ribbon for that matter) with the one
connected drive set as slave.

taken from here: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/power-mac-g3-b-w-chimes-but-no-video.2038889/
4
https://winworldpc.com/product/softwindows/95
other versions are also here for download
http://www.mymac.com/1996/06/softwindows-95-review/

Quote
Insignia Solution SoftPC, or "SoftWindows" when bundled with Windows, is an x86 emulator UNIX and MacOS that enables them to run DOS and Windows. SoftWindows is unique in that it uses native CPU recompiled Windows binaries providing near native speed for some application. It was also ported to platforms such as SGI Irix, Sun Solaris, HP-UX, IBM AIX, NeXT, Motorola 88000, DEC VAX/VMS, DEC ULTRIX, and was the emulator used by Microsoft to run DOS and Windows 3.1 application on the DEC Alpha CPU Windows NT.

Wanted: Versions for other architectures.

1.0
2.0
3.0
95 (current)
98
This version emulates a Pentium and is bundled with Windows 95.
10
AGP Cards (1996-2005) / Re: Geforce 3 Ti200 (March 2001)
«  by chrisNova777 on February 13, 2018, 09:46:54 PM »
this card can be flashed to mac
see this page:
http://themacelite.wikidot.com/wikidownloads2
11
http://www.filmbug.com/dictionary/hdtv.php

Quote
United States
One of the current reasons for the US government's push for digital transmission is the desire to auction off part of the UHF spectrum, channels #52 through #69, for other two way and one way fixed and mobile services. This could include digital mobile TV broadcasting. However, this is not the only reason historically. HDTV had been in development for some years in the US. In the 1980s there was a fear among many in the US that Japanese advances in HDTV would contribute to the further erosion of US leadership in electronics and other high-tech industries, not to mention the defense industry implications of having a high resolution television system. (Japan has since all but abandoned its old MUSE system and has introduced a digital system.) The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) began soliciting proposals for a new television standard for the US in the late 1980s and later decided to pick a digital standard in 1993. HDTV sets became available in the US in 1998 and broadcasts began around November 1998.
Because HDTV requires more broadcast spectrum for the transition period, it has been the topic of great political controversy in the United States. Stations currently receive a free channel, generally in the UHF range, over which they are to broadcast their digital signal, while still providing analog service. According to FCC rules, all television broadcasting in the United States by current full power broadcasters on channels 2-51 will by the beginning of 2007 be digital, with an escape clause that 85% of the serviced area must be "capable" of receiving digital signals. At the time of analog shutoff, one channel would then be returned to the government for transfer to the new private owner, while the other would have only the digital signal. Current analog TV sets would still work with cable or satellite service or with a converter box that would convert digital OTA signals to analog. As of January 2004, indications from industry and FCC officials including its chairman are that the cutoff date for digital-only broadcasts will not meet the intended 2007 and the actual timeline for analog shutoff in the US will realistically be in the 2010-2015 timeframe.

Of importance is that the FCC has not mandated HDTV signals; it has only mandated that digital TV signals be broadcast. The prevailing expectation, however, is that HDTV during primetime will be the rule. It is not clear whether broadcasting HDTV or multiple standard definition channels during non primetime hours will become common.

As of February 2004, most HDTV sets in the US had the capability to display HDTV signals but not to decode the broadcast. Generally only the more expensive TVs will have an 8-VSB (and often QAM) tuner built-in. Because a large percentage of people in the US receive their television through cable or satellite (particularly those who have the money to spend on an HDTV), and because different cable and satellite systems use different encoding standards, most HDTVs only include standard-definition tuners. This allows the user to purchase or rent a separate tuner to receive HDTV signals. An ATSC receiver can currently be purchased for around $350 in the US, although this is expected to drop sharply as demand increases. Alternately, in the US one can purchase a satellite tuner to receive satellite HD signals, or rent a cable HD tuner to receive cable signals. The situation is similar to UHF tuners, which initially were an aftermarket accessory in the early days when NTSC was initially broadcast only in the VHF range.

To expedite the availability of HD reception, the FCC has ruled that 50% of TV sets with screens of at least 36 inches must have 8-VSB tuners by July 2004, with complete tuner coverage in that size class by July 2005, while the requirement for smaller sets and digital VCRs would be phased in from 2005 to 2007. It is anticipated that the price of tuner hardware will fall as the market enlarges. It should be noted that the FCC also mandated the inclusion of UHF tuners in all NTSC TVs which eventually lead to their being integrated at no marginal cost.

The transition to HDTV in the US has not yet reached critical mass but there is increasing availability of premium as well as freely available terrestrial broadcast HD content. As equipment for HDTV production becomes cheaper and more widespread, this will only accelerate. For example, the US President's State-of-the-Union speech in January 2004 was broadcast using a mixture of HD and a few SD camera signals, which was the first major US news event to see any significant use of HD. On the equipment side, TVs capable of displaying HDTV signals are available as of July 2004 for approximately $400 USD in the direct view CRT market. Standard resolution CRT TV sets are completely extinct in the larger rear-projection CRT units.

Many of the new HDTV's with integrated tuners will include CableCard support. CableCard which has also been named "Digital Cable Ready" will enable cable TV customers to access protected content by receiving a Card from their cable company much like a PCCard for a pc, once this card is installed in the TV the customer will have some of the features of the Cable companies supplied Set Top Box. Unfortunately CableCard only support One Way communications which means that Video On Demand and Pay Per View will not be available. This also means that the Interactive Program Guide that most Digital Cable Customers are used to will have to be supplied by the TV manufacture. Cable Companies started supporting CableCard on July 1st 2004 per the FCC "Plug and Play" agreement. At this time the only CableCard devices are Panasonic TV's. Most major manufactures have announced CableCard products to be released late 2004.

Satellite television companies in the USA, such as Dish Network, started to carry HD programming in 2002. Some cable television companies, such as Comcast, started to do the same in 2003. As of July 2003, HD programming is carried by all major television networks (except Fox which plans to go HD in mid 2004) including ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS and The WB as well as other cable/satellite channels including Discovery HD Theater, HBO, HDNet, Showtime HDTV and INHD. Cable and satellite providers typically also offer HDTV pay-per-view movies. The production of HDTV programming is very time consuming. According to PBS, it took 1000 hours to produce a three hour program. As of July 2003, PBS only produces about 10 hours of HD programming per month, while ABC provides the most hours of HD programming per day among other non-cable networks.

Canada
In Canada, on November 22, 2003, CBC had their first broadcast in HD. Bell ExpressVu, a Canadian satellite company has TSN HD and Discovery HD (Canadian Edition). The Canadian Discovery HD Channel has commercials and is sponsored By Franklin Templeton Investments. Other networks are continuing to announce availability of HD signals.
12
didnt become mainstream/commonplace untill summer of 2004

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-definition_television

Quote
The first public HDTV broadcast in the United States occurred on July 23, 1996 when the Raleigh, North Carolina television station WRAL-HD began broadcasting from the existing tower of WRAL-TV southeast of Raleigh, winning a race to be first with the HD Model Station in Washington, D.C., which began broadcasting July 31, 1996 with the callsign WHD-TV, based out of the facilities of NBC owned and operated station WRC-TV

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-definition_television_in_the_United_States
HDTV sets became available in the U.S. in 1998 and broadcasts began around November 1998. The first public HDTV broadcast was of the launch of the space shuttle Discovery and John Glenn's return to space; that broadcast was made possible in part by the Harris Corporation.[3] The first commercial broadcast of a local sporting event in HD was during Major League Baseball's Opening Day on March 31, 1998, the Texas Rangers against the Chicago White Sox from The Ballpark in Arlington in Arlington, TX. The telecast was produced by LIN Productions, and overseen by LIN Productions president and Texas Rangers television executive producer Lee Spieckerman. The game was also the inaugural telecast on the digital channel of Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas NBC affiliate KXAS channel 5. The historic event was simultaneously shown via satellite at a reception attended by members of congress, the FCC and other luminaries in Washington, DC. This telecast was also the first commercial HD broadcast in the state of Texas.[4] The first major sporting event broadcast nationwide in HD was Super Bowl XXXIV on January 30, 2000.

Satellite television companies in the United States, such as Dish Network and DirecTV, started to carry HD programming in 2002.
13
https://www.lifewire.com/does-ipad-support-multiple-users-1994241

im sure there COULD be an easy way for multiple users to use the same ipad..

ie:
sign in, use the ipad + all related services ie: youtube, gmail, chrome etc
and then sign out when your done,
pass the ipad to a friend and have your friend sign in
and keep all passwords + login info secure + private..
but alas this isnt built into ios as of yet!

is there a way around this? i dont know.. if anyone has additional information on this topic please post
thanks
14
General / Miscellaneous / sci-fi thriller movies (1997-present)
«  by chrisNova777 on February 11, 2018, 11:11:59 AM »
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=1997-01-01,1997-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=1998-01-01,1998-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=1999-01-01,1999-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2000-01-01,2000-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2001-01-01,2001-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2002-01-01,2002-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2003-01-01,2003-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2004-01-01,2004-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2005-01-01,2005-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2006-01-01,2006-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2007-01-01,2007-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2008-01-01,2008-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2009-01-01,2009-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2010-01-01,2010-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2011-01-01,2011-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2012-01-01,2012-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2013-01-01,2013-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2014-01-01,2014-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2015-01-01,2015-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2016-01-01,2016-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2017-01-01,2017-12-31&genres=sci-fi,thriller&view=simple
15
im surprised at the amount of views this thread has got in a short time period..

im also surprised that bt has NO CONSCIENCE at all
16
General / Miscellaneous / http://drummerdonnie.com/Archive/
«  by chrisNova777 on February 11, 2018, 03:51:08 AM »
http://drummerdonnie.com/Archive/

bunch of usefull apps here
17
Mac OS 9 (Oct 1999) / alladin stuffit deluxe v4.5 ISO
«  by chrisNova777 on February 10, 2018, 06:51:51 PM »
not sure why this is compressed as a 7zip file..
not really the best format to have a file for macintosh in!

sourced from: https://winworldpc.com/product/stuffit-expander/45
18
http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=1997-01-01,1997-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. The Fifth Element (1997)
2. Starship Troopers (1997)
3. 10,000 BC (2008)
4. Dante's Peak (1997)   
5. The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=1998-01-01,1998-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Armageddon (1998)
2. Lost in Space (1998)
3. Ronin (1998)   
4. The Mask of Zorro (1998)
5. The Man in the Iron Mask (I) (1998)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=1999-01-01,1999-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999)   
2. The Mummy (1999)   
3. Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999)
4. The World Is Not Enough (1999)
5. The Iron Giant (1999)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2000-01-01,2000-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. Gladiator (2000)   
2. X-Men (2000)   
3. Charlie's Angels (2000)
4. Mission: Impossible II (2000)   
5. Battlefield Earth (2000)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2001-01-01,2001-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001)
2. A Knight's Tale (2001)
3. Planet of the Apes (2001)
4. Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001)
5. The Mummy Returns (2001)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2002-01-01,2002-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Spider-Man (2002)   
2. Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002)
3. Minority Report (2002)
4. Die Another Day (2002)
5. The Count of Monte Cristo (2002)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2003-01-01,2003-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003)
2. X-Men 2 (2003)   
3. Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World (2003)
4. The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)
5. Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle (2003)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2004-01-01,2004-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. The Incredibles (2004)   
2. National Treasure (2004)   
3. Van Helsing (2004)
4. King Arthur (2004)   
5. The Day After Tomorrow (2004)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2005-01-01,2005-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. Batman Begins (2005)
2. King Kong (2005)
3. Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (2005)   
4. The Dukes of Hazzard (2005)
5. Serenity (2005)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2006-01-01,2006-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. Casino Royale (2006)   
2. Apocalypto (2006)   7.8   
3. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (2006)
4. Mission: Impossible III (2006)
5. X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2007-01-01,2007-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Spider-Man 3 (2007)
2. Wild Hogs (2007)
3. Transformers (2007)
4. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (2007)
5. Beowulf (2007)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2008-01-01,2008-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Iron Man (2008)
2. The Incredible Hulk (2008)
3. Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)   
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008)
5. Quantum of Solace (2008)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2009-01-01,2009-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Avatar (2009)   
2. Star Trek (2009)
3. X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)
4. Sherlock Holmes (2009)   
5. Terminator Salvation (2009)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2010-01-01,2010-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Inception (2010)   
2. Clash of the Titans (2010)
3. TRON: Legacy (2010)   
4. Iron Man 2 (2010)   
5. The Expendables (2010)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2011-01-01,2011-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Thor (2011)      
2. Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
3. Conan the Barbarian (2011)   
4. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011)
5. X-Men: First Class (2011)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2012-01-01,2012-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. The Avengers (2012)
2. Total Recall (I) (2012)
3. Skyfall (2012)
4. Battleship (2012)   
5. Snow White and the Huntsman (2012)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2013-01-01,2013-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Pacific Rim (2013)      
2. Thor: The Dark World (2013)
3. Man of Steel (2013)   
4. World War Z (2013)   
5. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2014-01-01,2014-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
2. Kingsman: The Secret Service (2014)
3. Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
4. The Expendables 3 (2014)
5. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2015-01-01,2015-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Bilal: A New Breed of Hero (2015)   
2. Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
3. Ant-Man (2015)      
4. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)
5. Terminator Genisys (2015)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2016-01-01,2016-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
1. Suicide Squad (2016)   
2. Deadpool (2016)      
3. Captain America: Civil War (2016)   
4. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)
5. Doctor Strange (2016)

http://www.imdb.com/search/title?title_type=feature&release_date=2017-01-01,2017-12-31&genres=action,adventure&view=simple

Quote
   
1. Thor: Ragnarok (2017)      
2. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017)   
3. Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)
4. Justice League (2017)   
5. Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017)
19
thank you jgaryt  8)
20
General / Miscellaneous / what is SMDI?
«  by chrisNova777 on February 09, 2018, 06:42:09 PM »

https://peavey.com/support/technotes/midi/smdi.cfm

Quote
What is SMDI?
By Matt Isaacson

A standard method for transferring samples via SCSI is now available. Will it catch on?

I'm not one to create acronyms for the sake of acronyms, but when I tried to name a new data transfer method I developed, it made sense to link it to another well-known member of the electronic music lexicon. So yes, SMDI (pronounced "smi-dee"), an acronym for SCSI Musical Data Interchange, rhymes with MIDI. However, it is not SCSI-MIDI, it is not spelled SMIDI, and it is not pronounced "ess-MIDI." Those using these spellings or pronunciations are in error and should be politely corrected.

What exactly is SMDI? Simply put, SMDI is a method of using SCSI (the Small Computer Systems Interface) to transfer information between samplers and computers. SMDI has been characterized as "SCSI sample dump" because it is based loosely on the familiar MIDI Sample Dump Standard (SDS). The central aim of SMDI is to use the superior data transfer ability of SCSI to serve the same purpose as SDS, that is, to send samples between any two devices in a nonproprietary, commonly recognized format.

Life Before SMDI
The story of SMDI starts with the state of music equipment in its absence. All previous methods of sample transfer have shortcomings that grow more problematic as the state of digital audio improves. For example, SDS has several flaws. It can't deal with stereo samples or samples longer than two megawords, and it conveys a bare minimum of information about a sample (names and pitch values not included) and none about the sampler (such as its sample-number range). SDS also offers no tools for remote management (e.g., a Delete command).

However, the greatest shortfall of SDS is that it uses MIDI and is therefore glacially slow. MIDI was never meant to move large quantities of data. It's a low-cost system for transmitting real-time event information, working at a speed that just barely lets it do a competent job. On the other hand, SCSI was born to move data. Even transfers over a low-cost SCSI interface can easily be 100 to 300 times faster than an equivalent MIDI transfer.

Thanks to its versatile design and wide acceptance as a standard by the computer industry, SCSI is the interface of choice for sampler hard-disk access. Its key advantages for the designer (and user) are standardization and device-independence. SCSI disks handle the messy details of cylinders, heads, buffers, and the like on the inside, and present a simple, standard "virtual" device to the SCSI bus. SCSI driver software then deals with this virtual device in a generic way. More importantly, a SCSI driver that sets up a sampler for use with the whole range of SCSI disks (even those not yet developed) must be created only once.

Samplers use the speed of their SCSI ports to upload and download samples. However, the precise transfer methods for samplers are not standardized over SCSI. Each sampler's implementation is usable only through a coordinated effort by someone (usually a third-party software company) working from the other end of the SCSI cable. Unlike SCSI disk drivers, this effort must be duplicated for each sampler by each company seeking to support it. A company may decide that the cost of this effort isn't justified by the projected sales, or its programmers may be unable to do it right away (perhaps because of other samplers that need support).

Clearly, this is a losing situation for almost everyone involved, but especially for users, who are resigned to seeing their sample libraries remain "ghettoized" for lack of a usable interchange method. It also puts a strain on manufacturers. Digidesign, one of the original heavyweights in third-party sampler support, now puts its energies into SampleCell and no longer supports samplers.

A few samples can read the floppy-disk formats of some competitors, but this piecemeal approach to the problem involves a cumbersome transfer method that is especially taxing for manufacturers to implement. It certainly offers some utility, mainly as an "escape route" from one sampler to another, but it does nothing to address the real problem or facilitate new capabilities.

A Standard Is Born
A standard SCSI sample-transfer method would clearly be a boon to all concerned. So why isn't there one? For starters, arriving at a standard protocol is not trivial undertaking. SCSI is a big topic. It covers a breadth of equipment in which musical instruments don't even rate a mention. In the cloistered world of MIDI, every other unit on the line is a MIDI device, but a SCSI cable normally plays host to devices that don't know a sampler from a samovar.

In addition to the thorny technical problems, there is the question of an appropriate forum in which to address the issue. It's far too narrow for the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), the stewards of SCSI. The focus of the MIDI Manufacturers Association (MMA) is MIDI; SCSI is technically not part of their charter. However, unless a standard emerges from an industry group charged with creating it, manufacturers may be skeptical of its merit or may wait to see who else adopts it before committing themselves.

Meanwhile, those companies that have forged ahead with proprietary protocols are less inclined to feel that a standard would benefit them. Some may be downright hostile at the suggestion that they scrap their work to start over with a new method not of their own invention. In addition, the desire for a standard protocol isn't universally shared. Companies with large investments in sound libraries (and it is often the library that makes or breaks a sampler) have reason to be wary of a feature that helps users export samples en masse to other products.

How did SMDI evolve, then? Rather spontaneously, as it turns out. I took a stab at it while developing the system software for the Peavey DPM-SP. The SP is a low-cost sample-player without built-in sampling and, at the time of its introduction, a rather limited factory sound library. Clearly, in order for the DPM-SP to have any chance of success, the issue of sample transfers had to be addressed. Users of other samplers would want to move their personal libraries over to it, as would commercial sound library suppliers. There wasn't time to crack three or four alien floppy formats while also developing the native one for the DPM-SP. It seemed that a well-supported SCSI transfer protocol was the best prospect.

Rather than designing a product-specific protocol, I wanted to create a generic one, hoping that this would make it easier to enlist the necessary third-party support early on. In addition, I thought it might help break the SCSI transfer logjam and trigger some other activity in this area. (No harm in trying, anyway.) The powers-that-be at Peavey understood the intent and gave the go-ahead to release SMDI into the public domain without fees or royalties. This would encourage other product developers facing the same problem to consider adopting the already-worked-out SMDI method.

Such an attempt to parlay a unilateral creation into a standard is far from unprecedented in industry. SCSI itself evolved from something called SASI, the Shugart Associates System Interface. It's too soon to say whether SMDI will become a universal standard, but among the companies that have chosen to use it is Kurzweil in their K2000 synth/sampler. That's an important first step. (For a current list of products supporting SMDI, see the side bar "SMDIfied.")

What's In It For Me?
When (and if) it comes to your gear, SMDI can spare you lots of waiting when shuttling your samples around; ditto for computer editing. In addition, you don't need a DSP board in the computer just to audition edits, because you can zip an edited sample quickly back into the sampler.

If a new sampler were to join the SMDI club today, it would already be supported by Alchemy, MAX, and SampleVision and enjoy the ability to transfer samples directly to and from the K2000 and DPM-SP, with no updates to any of those products and nary a phone call to their manufacturers.

The adoption of a standard protocol might hasten the appearance of previously impractical applications. For example, a centrally fed sampler network could be designed in which all units receive their samples via SMDI downloads from a common sample database accessed by a sophisticated session manager. If you now use two or more different samplers and a computer, your sample library may exist in different formats on as many hard disks. If you're fortunate enough to have gigabytes of sounds, redundant disks add up to real money. Wouldn't it be nice if your samplers didn't need dedicated hard disks of their own?

SMDI also provides a method for transmission of MIDI messages. This means that program information for each sampler could be maintained on the same central disk as the sample database and sent along the same SCSI cable (as SMDI MIDI SysEx) at the same blazing speed. (Don't throw those MIDI cables away, though. Despite its data-moving prowess, SCSI is not a good real-time event-transmission interface, and SMDI won't be replacing MIDI anytime soon).

The same idea applies to CD-ROM sound libraries. With sound files in the native format of the computer (e.g., AIFF), a single CD-ROM could furnish samples to any SMDI sampler and include device-specific files that organize these samples into sound banks for many different products, also transmittable via SMDI.

The bottom line is this: The more you move samples around, and the bigger they are, the more SMDI can help. As more manufacturers adopt SMDI, the more it will help. The applications in this article are possible right now, but they will become commonplace more quickly if SMDI (or something like it) becomes a de facto standard in the music industry. If you'd like to see that happen, make your voice heard. Manufacturers do listen, especially when many voices are talking. Drop a letter or make a call to your favorite sampler or software company and ask, "Where do you stand on the SMDI question?"

(To obtain a copy of the SMDI spec, contact Peavey Electronics Corporation at [601] 483-5365.)

Matt Isaacson lives in San Francisco and has been a design and development engineer with Sequential Circuits, Yamaha, and Peavey over the last nine years.