[PD] PD usability

Marc Lavallée odradek at videotron.ca
Wed Feb 12 17:32:41 CET 2003

I had a strange conversation yesterday with a teacher who basically said
that free software sucks because of usability issues, and that he'll
refuse to teach Pure Data because Max is vastly superior at the
cognitive level. The segmented patch cord functionnality seems to be of
major importance to him. He also seemed quite revolted by the
installation process of the OSX version. So to him, the whole idea of
free software is simply irrelevent. This man (who call himself an
anarchist, go figure) is telling all those young people that they must
pay a fortune to get a fancy Mac and a Max/MSP/Jitter licence.

I'm the only one in my community to use free software for multimedia
production. I'd really like my people to use free software, but they
simply don't want to, because the very second they are in touch with "no
so easy to use" softwares, they almost puke. How could we make PD better
so these people would agree using free software? I stopped using Max
because of its restrictive license, and I prefer PD to jMax because it's
lighter and faster. 

Most of us don't need fancy segmented patch cords and graphical objects
with a puffy look, but can we focus a little bit on the graphical
interface issues? I need those Mac addicts to use PD. I like being in
touch with people on this list, but I also need real people (those I get
in touch with everyday) to use the same tools than me.


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