My name is Ilan Katin and as the first poster, editor and ‘web master’ (remember that title?) of the modul8.us web site let me give a little introduction about my relationship with this incredible software.
I come from a very arts oriented family. My father is a musician and my mother is a visual artist. Even though I took to my mothers path the idea of merging sound and audio in a spontaneous manner always intrigued me.
When I learned about VJ’ing I was very excited about the concept of it but mostly disappointed by tools and the results they offered. Not to mention the fact that most video mixing tools required a considerable investment. My hopes of a solution began to brighten when I first saw someone using a computer to mix video. I thought about how liberating it would be to just be able to show up at a gig and open a laptop.
Most VJ apps I had played with always followed the analog video mixing format of A/B channels. Two video channels mixed together. To top it off the performance quality was so slow because the video playback relied on the CPU (central processing unit). For a little bit of techno mumbo jumbo and to be really specific the CPU is responsible for everything that is happening on your computer and asking it do that and mix video in real time is like trying to do Yoga, send email and tell your cat to keep it’s paws out of the fish tank.
The closest anyone had come to these lofty ideals of mine was around 2003 within a program called ‘PixelShox’. It had almost no user interface but sported a nifty patch based system that generated images using OpenGL (very fast!). OpenGL is a standard language for displaying 3D graphics using a video card. The demise of this application unfolded when the person responsible for writing it and the application itself disappeared into our beloved Apple Inc. The program is now called Quartz Composer. However this transition took many moons and your humble story writer was without any satisfying means for expressing himself within the beat pounding environs of the NYC music scene.
According to my records the date I stumbled upon a brief mention on a Mac centric site was April, 30th 2004. Upon following the link to the GarageCube web site and seeing the pre-pre-release screen shots I knew I found exactly what I was looking for. Modul8 completely bi-passed the A/B video channel concept by instead providing an interface with ten layers (count them!) and relied on the GPU (the graphics card) to handle all of the imaging. I understood the interface immediately and in a heart beat emailed GarageCube to inquire about becoming a beta tester.
Since then the application has changed in some subtle ways as have my uses for it. I will leave the elaborations on this subject for another posting.
To end this first posting I want to mention that I am open to any suggestions for modifying this site and will post anything as long as it is related to modul8. This can be anything from a module you have written or a review of a module someone else has written. If you are using a particular piece of midi hardware or a special video projector that would be really great as well. If it is a gig or an installation please send an eflyer. It can be video of a mix you have done. I do not have the disc space to post video and for the sake of allowing the page to load smoothly I would prefer if you sent me a screen grab from your clip and a blurb for it and I’ll provide a link to the actual video be it YouTube a page on your site where the video is embedded. I am also open to any esthetic suggestions. Currently I am using Blogger to publish the articles. It is an OK solution however in the future I should like to convert it to something like wordpress so that there can be a calendar for your upcoming gigs and better content management overall.
All of the above can be addressed by sending an email to email@example.com.
That should cover everything for now.
Peace to you all.