James Crook is one of the lead developers on Audacity.
- I've a particular interest in using Audacity for foreign language learning. I'd love to see Audacity being used to prepare language material in a structured fashion. This could then be loaded onto an mp3 player which has modified firmware, or onto a smart phone, so that the audio lesson can become more interactive. The same kind of techniques could be used in preparing audio material for the blind or for people with dyslexia.
- My day job is in electronics. It has in the past been in bio informatics (fast DNA sequence data mining), telecoms and broadcast television. Currently I write commercial software for designing ICs, (FPGAs).
- Hobbies (aside from programming): body work, playing football and science fiction.
I'm looking at several initiatives to ensure the future success of Audacity. The most imminent is our current push to get a stable version 1.4 released.
1.4 Release Timeline
The timeline for the windows release could be:
Proposed 1.4 Timeline
- Time Zero: We have an internal release of 1.3.5 for windows, where we knock it around within the active community on the devel list. Our focus is testing, not fixing. This is a one week developer-list test. During that week we apply some of the agreed Wording changes to dialogs etc. Possibly even we do one or two aim-tos, if they are not complex and are pre-agreed as exceedingly safe! However, any wording we've not agreed on by the end of that week stays as is.
- +1 week...: If no new show stoppers have come out of the woodwork nor old ones resurfaced, we then freeze 1.3.5, fork CVS, and pre release 1.3.5 to a slightly wider community, again for a week. We need to have a beta test page on the wiki where we say what we want from beta testers.
- +2 weeks...: End of preliminary testing. If that is all OK, we then officially release and announce 1.3.5 beta on sourceforge. Now we hassle our translators, work on documentation improvements whilst 1.3.5 is out there on trial.
- +6 weeks...: If 1.3.5 is still looking good, we re-release it as 1.4, with translation, full help etc.
Major concerns with 1.4 Release Timeline
- Dominic has seen serious problems with Portaudio v19 with Mac. We may revert to Portaudio v18 on Mac, and that would to me imply we should do the same with the windows version.
- The Linux (Debian) build of Audacity no longer builds.
We need a recruitment drive. We need more programmers, each doing somewhat less, new ideas, new directions. It's needed to keep the project vibrant. It's particularly true of a project that supports multiple platforms, Linux, Windows, Mac.
In 2007 we missed out on Google Summer Of Code. That's largely my fault. I put together a short factual application for Audacity to be a mentoring organisation, suggesting that we take on just one student to get the hang of it. With the huge numbers of downloads we have, I thought we'd be a shoe in. I was wrong. In 2008 our approach needs to be a lot more professional. We're doing a lot of preparatory work between then and now, mostly behind the scenes. If you're interested, contact me via the audacity developer list.
Improving this Wiki
I'd like this wiki to be a lot more visually appealing. Of course it's not just the visuals. I'd like the content to be better too. Good visual appeal is an important step. It gives the message that we take updating the wiki seriously and encourages more visitors to participate. The beauty of wiki is that anyone can contribute. Even small corrections and improvements help.
Tables of information help to break up wiki text. To help promote tables on audacity wiki, I'm building a list of possible tables that we already have or can have in the future. Improved formatting of tables and images in them can help too. Let's make this wiki sing!
- On the front page we have, or will have, a table with the flags of the different countries and the languages Audacity has been translated into.
- The plug ins page lists types of plugins such as Nyquist, Ladspa, Vst, Vamp.
- Audacity uses many libraries, libmad, libvamp, portmixer, portaudio...
- Admins on Sourceforge
- Dominic, Vaughan, Leland... Possibility of a table with brief information about each, when they joined, why they joined, the day job, what music they like. May need to lock this page.
- Audacity Translators
- Companion to the 'internationalisation' page, but listing the active translators, the languages they speak, first version they translated....
- Audio formats
- Wav, mp3, Flac....
- Built with audacity
- Variants on Audacity, such as Thinklabs, Umixit, Cleanspeech...
- Test sounds
- Tone, Chirp, Square wave, Sawtooth, Beat frequencies. Each with images and spectrum, downloadable audio file and instructions on how to make it in Audacity.