[PD] vertical column of msg boxes

Jonathan Wilkes jancsika at yahoo.com
Wed Feb 10 21:09:40 CET 2010

--- On Wed, 2/10/10, hard off <hard.off at gmail.com> wrote:

> From: hard off <hard.off at gmail.com>
> Subject: Re: [PD] vertical column of msg boxes
> To: "Martin Peach" <martin.peach at sympatico.ca>
> Cc: "Jonathan Wilkes" <jancsika at yahoo.com>, pd-list at iem.at
> Date: Wednesday, February 10, 2010, 3:23 PM
> that is a brilliant idea.  if lines were
> always hidden behind boxes, patching would be so much
> neater.


I think hiding cords behind boxes would make the patches harder to 
read.  In the attached cords-pdext (which is my favorite "do once" idiom) 
you've only got four pixels and a judgment of the wire angle to know that 
the wire stretches all the way from the outlet of [0] to the right inlet 
of [spigot].  If the graphics were a little more evolved you could 
make it so that the cord looks is visible in the background of the text 
without obscuring it, but as it is I prefer the current clear sloppiness 
to ambiguous neatness.

In the straight vertical column of msg boxes I suggested and Martin's tcpclient-help.pd (never thought of that, btw), we're both indulging in 
the ambiguous neatness-- I mean if you really want to be true to telling 
what a patch does just by looking at it, I think 
you'd have to line up messages as in tcpclient-help-example.pd  
(attached).  That's the only way you can know for sure where the wires go 
without moving stuff around in the patch.

But since all those messages boxes are obviously _supposed_ to go to the 
same place, I think it's acceptable to make it more readable for the user 
at the expense of making it harder to locate a mistake (e.g., forgetting 
to connect one of the message boxes).

But if the text in boxes was moved over 2 pixels so it didn't clash with 
the wires, I would prefer vertical msg box columns to the 45 degree 


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