[PD] gem newbie questions

adam overton aoverton at calarts.edu
Thu Sep 2 08:19:22 CEST 2004

hello there

i'm getting started with gem and have a handful of questions that i 
haven't been able to answer with the tutorial or manual... i'm planning 
on trying to use supercollider for my sound meanwhile sending OSC 
messages to PD so that i can control Gem. these questions don't reflect 
that yet; i'm still dealing with the basic quirks of gem and pd.

let's get started...
i'm running Mac OS 10.4, am using PD 0.37-2, and Gem 0.90 for G3.

for most of my following questions, i'm a little unsure of where the 
problems lie - i.e. is it machine specific, is it gem specific, is it 

here it goes...

1. is the pd-list the best place to ask basic gem questions, or should 
they be sent to gem-dev?

2. is there a way to make the Gem output window come to the front and 
sit on top of the other open pd windows? i can't move the window, and i 
know that's because you can only control that with the 'position' 
command to gemwin (will that ever change?? it'd be nice to be able to 
drag it around...). but if i'm doing a fullscreen thing with gem, then 
my patch is stuck in front of the image, and i can't close the patch 
window or else that stops everything and closes the gem window too.
so - can i hide the main patch window? is there a way to enable 
command-tilde(~) so that windows will come to the front? can i have the 
gem window in front of everything?
i understood the parts of the manual that talk about changing monitor 
preferences to use two separtate screens, one for your patch and one 
for your gem-output, but unfortunatley that does not apply to my 
situation - i want to be able to display the Gem output on my laptop 
screen without anything in front of it for others to view and to have 
the patch stuff in the background. i don't intend to use extra 
computers in the process either.
is this/will this be possible?

3. all of the tutorials have all of their toggle switches set to the 
OFF position, but whenever i open a tutorial and 'create' a genwin from 
scratch, all of the various geos that are supposed to be disabled 
instead pop-up on the screen, covering each other up. i then have to go 
to every point in the patch and toggle each gemhead on and then off in 
order to get the screen to go to its clear default OFF state. is there 
a way to have all of the gemhead's *really* start in the OFF state? i 
tried adding the -noloadbang flag thinking that that might help, but 
that wasn't it. it's kind of annoying to have to search around in all 
the subpatches for all the rogue geos and gemheads...

4. i get lots and lots of errors when i use pix_image and pix_film with 
pix_mix (tutorial 8) if the multiple pictures or videos being mixed 
together are not the exact same dimensions. will this limitation ever 
be changed, or is there already an easy way around this besides 
actually going and changing all of my images to the same size?

5. i've found that pd won't stop playing sound from my quicktime movies 
in the pix_film mixing examples (tutorial 8) even when i turn off the 
individual gemhead and/or 'auto' toggles. if i then 'destroy' the 
gemwin, the sound finally goes off with it after about a second, but as 
soon as i 'create' another gemwin the sound from the already stopped 
videos goes back on right where they left off... is there a way or will 
there be a way to make these videos and their soundtracks completely 
stop after starting?

alrighty. thanks so much for the help!

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