Max6. Is it a person? A robot? A new dubstep song? Well, it actually could be related to the last one. Max6 is a program we learned about in our digital history class that allows you to create a page that will make different sounds, visuals, or other technological things. From our two classes, my knowledge on the program is still a little limited, but I’ll give you what I’ve got.
For those of you who watched the video, that’s what Max6 can do. It’s a program that allows you insert images, sounds, and other exciting things onto a “patch” to tell a story, play a game, make a virtual exhibit- so many possibilities!
Or so they say. But, unlike the people in the video who make it look so easy, I have to tell you, Max6 is definitely NOT what’s inside my head.
As our valiant leader, professor Bill Turkel, led us through a tutorial on the program, I felt like Neville Longbottom in a potions class. Students around me were playing with the program like it was a natural thing they’d been doing their whole lives, while I stared in wonder at my computer screen and tried not to break anything.
But before I turn you off of the program, I should add I still left the class with a feeling of immense excitement at the possibilities Max offered.
We started by learning the basics: different commands to create buttons, toggles, notations, LEDs, how to change the colour of things and where to look for help. Then we began building.
This is an example of what the program can do at the very basic level. Essentially, we made it so those green lights flash when you click on the numbers above it. Sounds simple? Well can YOU make things flash green on your computer screen??! Probably.
BUT! Can you do this??!:
Yes? Oh. Well. My mind was blown. With this patch, you click a button, random piano notes are played FROM THE COMPUTER! That’s right. There was no piano in the room! I know, right!? With this, you can also adjust different numbers to change the speed and pitch of the notes.
This was the final thing we learned in this enlightening class. Could I reproduce this alone? Probably not. In fact, I know I can’t because I tried later that night. The concepts of creating different commands and putting them together seems easy enough, but without Bill’s wise tutorials, I would be lost on where to go next and would most likely be found muttering into my computer, wearing a tinfoil hat.
We are learning more about the program next semester in Bill’s digital exhibits class. I can only hope I learn to conquer the Max dragon. It’s going to take a lot of patience, and even more chocolate.