Siren Version 2.3 (1998) GUI Tour

The Siren system is a general-purpose music description and composition system; it is a collection of about 200 Smalltalk classes for building musical applications. The current version works on Squeak 2.3 running on Mac/Windows/SGI  systems with MIDI  drivers and CD-quality stereo audio I/O. The Siren release is available on the Web.

These screen dumps were made with Siren 2.3 running on an Apple Macintosh PowerBook.
Details can be found in the on-line Siren outline text, and in the on-line Siren reference manual.


  • Display List Views
  • Layout Manager Examples
  • Time Sequence View
  • Pitch/Time View
  • Hauer-Steffens View
  • Function View
  • Sound View
  • MIDI Fader View
  • MIDI Voice Picker
  • Sonogram View
  • Display List Views

    The example screens below show the simple Siren display list editor ("SqueakDraw"); it allows you to manipulate hierarchical structured graphics objects. The pop-up menu in the left view shows the default display list controller message. Keyboard commands and mouse interaction support zooming and scrolling. One item is selected in each view, and can be dragged or resized using its "selection handles."

    Layout Managers

    Siren is based on the "Navigator MVC" model; in it various kinds of layout managers take structured objects and create display lists. The two examples below a show class inheritance hierarchy presented first as an indented list and second as a simple tree. Color is used to denote class species relationships in the class hierarchies. A refined tree layout manage could do graphical balancing or top-down layout.


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    Time Sequence View

    A time sequence view is a display list view that whose layout manager interprets time as running from left to right. In the example below, the note "head" is used to display the event's voice; this is a steady rhythm of 4 voices.

    Pitch/Time View

    In a pitch/time view, time runs left-to-right, and pitch is displayed from bottom-to-top. In the example below, the layout manager creates a separate sub-display-list for each note, adding lines to the note head image to show its amplitude (vertical in red) and duration (horizontal in blue). The example shows alto, tenor, and bass lines.

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    Hauer-Steffens Notation

    Hauer-Steffens view is related to piano-roll notation; the lines are placed corresponding to the accidentals or the black notes on the keyboard. The note display is done as in the pitch/time view above.

    Function View

    The multi-function view allows the viewing and editing of up to 4 functions of 1 variable. The example shows linear break-point functions in red and yellow, an exponential segment function in blue, and a cubic spline function in green. The buttons along the left are for selecting a particular function for editing or file I/O.

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    Sound View

    The Siren sound view lets you zoom/scroll over stored sound object, and to create new sounds based on file I/O or simple synthesis algorithms. The figure below shows a frequency sweep and the editor's pop-up menu.

    MIDI Faders

    The MIDI fader view shows the real-time state of an arbitrary set of MIDI faders or control inputs.

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    MIDI Voice Picker

    The MIDI voice picker is used in creating orchestras of general MIDI instruments. Pressing a button in this view auditions the selected general MIDI sound.


    Sonogram View

    The sonogram view displays an fft-derived spectrum. In the example below shows a swept sine wave.

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    Stephen Travis Pope -- -- LastEditDate: 1998.11.12