User:Paul L

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Welcome to Paul's page!

Hello. I'm one of many developers who have contributed to Audacity. I live near Boston.

In these pages I summarize my past contributions to Audacity, and try to organize my thoughts about possible future ones, and the problems of maintaining good code quality and architecture.

As a developer I care not just about features that the users see in the program. I am dedicated to making the code read well, making me confident that the program is reliable, and is cleanly organized so as not to inhibit big, bold, future developments.

So I'm at least as much concerned for my invisible contributions as for the visible ones. I have been playing a long game in attempts to remove what I see as difficult obstacles to the further evolution of major features in Audacity.

My history with Audacity

I started using Audacity (at version 2.0.2, in 2012) as a hobbyist to record and edit my own voice as a narrator. Wanting to automate some repetitive editing tasks, I suggested an enhancement I'd like to see at the Audacity forum, and to my surprise, Steve soon wrote me a Nyquist plug-in, sparing me the wait for a new release.

That led me to learn more about Nyquist Lisp and experiment with writing my own. I wrote two rather complex plug-ins to automate the cleanup of bothersome clicks and whistling sibilants, and shared them with the wider community of narrators, many of whom like them. (So, I wasn't alone in that obsession over detail!)

That was my gateway. Curious about how other parts of Audacity worked, I went beyond plug-ins and dug deeper into a study of the C++ source code of Audacity proper, then followed the development mailing list and suggested some improvements, and then (just after 2.1.0 released, in 2015, with two major projects of mine included), was awarded full team membership.

I have continued contributing since then, and served as Release Manager for versions 2.2.0 through 2.2.2.

About my more remote past: I have an undergraduate education in mathematics and am self-taught as a programmer. In the '90s I worked mostly in the modeling of curves and surfaces for Pro/ENGINEER of PTC, a computer-aided design program for machine parts and assemblies. Afterwards I was employee number 10 at what was not yet called Revit Technology Corporation, a successful startup in architectural CAD, now owned by Autodesk.


A list of my contributions.