[PD] Pd Manual

Hans-Christoph Steiner hans at at.or.at
Tue Aug 11 18:59:00 CEST 2009

Yeah, good point.  The "connection order" statement should really be a  
footnote.  [trigger] should really be introduced before talking about  
the connection order.


On Aug 10, 2009, at 4:44 PM, Jonathan Wilkes wrote:

> I think there is a problem in section 2.3.2 of the Pd Manual:
> "It is indeterminate which of "B" or "C" is done first; this depends  
> on
> what order you made the connections in (in Max, it's automatically  
> sorted
> right to left)."
> First of all, the part before the semicolon contradicts the part that
> follows the semicolon.

> Second of all, the next paragraph talks about infinite loops;  
> [trigger]
> isn't addressed until the following section, momentarily making it  
> seem
> as if "the order you made the connections in" is an feature of the
> language that is somehow analogous to Max's right-to-left sorting.
> This may seem nitpicky, but I think the analogous Pd feature
> in this case is Pd's reliance on [trigger] as the main
> way to specify execution order.  I think [trigger] should be mentioned
> before the the quoted material above (or at least immediately  
> following)
> so that the comparison to Max is as follows:
> Max: When multiple connections are made from an object, they are  
> executed
> in right-to-left order.  This makes it easy to know the execution  
> order
> simply by looking at a patch, but can make it tricky to reorganize the
> patch (unless [trigger] is used explicitly).
> Pd: When the execution order needs to be specified, the user  
> explicitly
> uses a [trigger] object. This means you can look at a patch and tell  
> the execution order, _and_ (aside from [inlet] and [outlet]) objects  
> can be reorganized without the risk of changing the execution order.
> Finally, if there are multiple connections from an object and  
> [trigger]
> is not used, it can be assumed that either execution order shouldn't
> matter in that instance, or that the person making the patch has  
> forgotten
> to specify it (in which case it is an error and [trigger] should be
> utilized).
> The fact that Pd executes in the order the connections were made only
> makes sense in light of the explicit use of [trigger].  Even if Pd  
> rolled
> some virtual dice to determine execution order when multiple
> connections are coming from a single object, most of our patches would
> work the same because we all use [trigger] explicitly in Pd, right?
> I know the Pd manual doesn't make assumption about how someone  
> _should_
> use Pd, but I think this is an exception, because anyone who is  
> relying
> on the order they make connections is going to have a hard time  
> getting
> anywhere.  Plus, it seems like an unusual number of people have said
> (or written) that Pd "relies" on the order in which you make  
> connections
> for the execution order, which isn't true.
> Does this make sense?
> -Jonathan
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