[PD] (breaking symbols) was Re: find a list of numbers in a text file

Jonathan Wilkes jancsika at yahoo.com
Mon Sep 12 03:00:43 CEST 2011

----- Original Message -----
> From: Mathieu Bouchard <matju at artengine.ca>
> To: Hans-Christoph Steiner <hans at at.or.at>
> Cc: pd-list at iem.at
> Sent: Sunday, September 11, 2011 2:04 PM
> Subject: Re: [PD] (breaking symbols) was Re: find a list of numbers in a text file
> On Fri, 9 Sep 2011, Hans-Christoph Steiner wrote:
>>  How would you then describe how Pd judges the difference between a symbol 
> and a float? I wish there was more on this topic in the manual, but there is 
> not.
> It's quite hard to do biblical interpretation... and it doesn't 
> necessarily pay off.
> In the facts, programmes are written for machines to execute, and only 
> incidentally for people to read. So, issues of backward compatibility happen 
> regardless of what the manual actually says, and it's possible that a 
> programme doesn't reflect the intent, that a manual doesn't reflect the 
> intent, and/or that a manual doesn't reflect the programme. How you resolve 
> such a conflict is... some kind of triple-edged sword... but remember that the 
> intent in question needs not to be the original intent, I'm talking about 
> the current intents.
> E.g. if you pass a symbol through [trigger float], which is documented as 
> something that «converts» data, and what it does to any symbol is turn it to 0, 
> you can safely throw away both the documentation and the presumed original 
> intent and move on. Then you may decide a new intent that is useful instead of 
> nonsensical.

But [trigger] _can_ convert message types:

[float 1(
[trigger list]
[select list float]
|          |
|          [pd sorry_float_you_blow_up_now_dammit_if_we_had_only_used_trigger_conversion]
[pd list_saves_the_world_thanks_to_trigger_conversion_sunset_credits]


[trigger] has two main functions:
1) sequence messages in right to left order.
2) have any/all/none of the outlets send a bang instead of the original message as a patching shortcut:


[trigger anything]

can be shortened to:

[trigger bang]

2.5) Pd-l2ork and Max/MSP extend this patching shortcut so that:

[trigger bang]

may be shortened to:

[trigger 1]

And finally:

-1) [t a] as a cheap hack due to lack of segmented patching cords


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