Possible Entrepreneurial Venture For Tapspace

Greetings!

Let me start by apologizing for this topic's being inappropriately located. I want to get this idea in front of people who have software expertise, and as the title of this thread suggests, that may be of some benefit to the Tapspace company, and to the rudimental drumming community en masse, but I'm not sure where on this forum to post it. With that said, if this discussion's location is a burden in any way, please feel free to delete it.

As for my idea: I'm including a link to another forum that this topic is being discussed on. I'm posting the link rather than cutting and pasting the original post because some good information and ideas have been exchanged over the course of the conversation - ideas that I'd like for the Tapspace community (the creators, especially) to contribute to. My assumption is that this is a more tech-friendly audience, so if anyone could shed some light on the main questions, it would probably be enough to satify my curiosity. And those questions, in essence, are:

1.) Would the cost of producing something like this be far too high to warrant risking it?
2.) What software and hardware technologies would be required to make something like this work? (I don't speak ";computer,"; btw).
3.) Is the technology already available, or would this require new technologies and/or unrealistic improvements on existing technologies?

Here's the link to the existing discussion: http://www.drumhard.com/pages/forum/default.asp  (Enter the ";Marching & Rudimental Forum"; and find the thread titled ";Interactive Drum Corps Video Game";).

Thanks in advance for any and all insights/ideas. If it's a feasible vision, I hope that someone here can take this ball and run with it. I think it'd be a useful tool!





Yes.
[quote author=jmattson link=topic=782.msg4456#msg4456 date=1143675370]
Everyone I know makes VDL2 recordings with a metronome track and breaks things down by sections for practice/rehearsal CDs.
[/quote]

Even the kid that bags your groceries?
Everyone I know makes VDL2 recordings with a metronome track and breaks things down by sections for practice/rehearsal CDs.
[quote author=ted_boliske link=topic=782.msg4440#msg4440 date=1143575356]

Lou Harrison, John Cage and many percussion ensemble compositions from the 70s.
Blackearth Percussion Group, Percussion Group Cincinnati or Nexus.

Ted Boliske
[/quote]

Oops. Looks like I was preaching to the choir.

But what about making CD's of drumlines' audition material, pre season? Is that standard fare already and I just don't know it? I mean, a good percentage of the drumset texts on the market come with play-along CD's, so one has to suspect that the same idea would sell in drum corps circles. In fact, I can totally see the over-enthusiastic high school drumliners (like myself) sitting in the school parking lot, right outside the band room, bumping the last years' Cadet street beat, playing along on their pads, etc. Moreover, I really think it'd work, and I can totally visualize the quarter-mile lines to the souvenir booth.

No I can't. :)

But, again, from a strictly utilitarian perspective, one has to believe that hearing how their individual sub-section's part fits in with the rest of the battery, before ever even playing in the ensemble, would serve to just, plain get things done faster.

And I'm a little curious: Do arrangers from the other corps -- viz., Dave Glyde, Tom Aungst, Bret Kuhn, et al. -- use VDL, or is it mostly a Jim Casella/Murray Gusseck thing?
[quote author=Marsha N. Mambo link=topic=782.msg4439#msg4439 date=1143573794]

Oh, and while I have my thinking cap on, someone should really write in some front-field parts with a big metal bowl --a bowl mic'd up and full of water. I mean, anyone else ever been washing out the popcorn dish and accidentally whacked it on the side with the scrubber while the water was swishing around?

The sound is a shoe-in for passages requiring eclectic pit dialogue.


[/quote]

Lou Harrison, John Cage and many percussion ensemble compositions from the 70s.
Blackearth Percussion Group, Percussion Group Cincinnati or Nexus

Ted Boliske
I've been thinking about this a little more, and though the video game idea may not have been the greatest, I did come up with the following, which is on a similar note:

When I was first exposed to drum corps (in 1992), not very many organizations relied on a metrnome for time during rehearsals. (At least not that I'm aware of). And, IMHO, since use of the met has been popularized, drumlines have taken on a more rhythmically precise, albeit mechanical, feel. Importantly, that's not to say that the more ";organic"; disposition of some of the lines from yesteryear had is bad; just different. But what I was thinking is how technology -- like it does in society at large -- might continue to develop the trend toward total rhythmic consistency.

So stop me if you've already heard this one, (because I definitely don't have detailed knowledge of the logistics of running a drum corps), but with software like VDL available, and with the new custom of charging for audition packets in mind, why don't arrangers sell their audition material as CD's? I ask because it seems logical to have a sort of rhythmic ";home base"; for all prospective drumline members to familiarize themselves with before ever even getting together to play. And having that could only serve to make the path to clean play that much clearer, with interp issues being more or less resolved, etc.

Furthermore, burning stuff to disc would be cheap and easy. So would distributing it, I suspect; especially given the popularity of some of the various corps' instructional texts. And, like I mentioned up top, (though maybe not as signifigant as the introduction of the met) playing with a rhymically perfect reference point could only serve to advance the artform/discipline on the whole.

Oh, and while I have my thinking cap on, someone should really write in some front-field parts with a big metal bowl --a bowl mic'd up and full of water. I mean, anyone else ever been washing out the popcorn dish and accidentally whacked it on the side with the scrubber while the water was swishing around?

The sound is a shoe-in for passages requiring eclectic pit dialogue.

Okay, so here's the idea that I've been kicking around for a couple of years now.  A playback module (a la VDL:2) that contains a visual component.  Using a MIDI file created for this purpose (just like most of us use with VDL:2 already), there is information for the visual components already (ie. sticks in, duts, rim-clicks, shots, stickings, back-sticking, cymbals crashes of all kinds, etc.).

I think that Jim was working a little with the virtual musician stuff (can't remember the name of it) a while back...or somebody here was.  It is just a real-time 3D visual playback like I've described above...but with non-human characters (the last time I saw a demo).

Fun stuff...skinning (create your favorite virtual drum corps), unlimited configurations (10 snares, 8 tenors, 50 scottish basses).  Future extensibility could include mark-time, drill, visuals, etc.

If you think that using drill charts and VDL:2 for visualization of a final product is good, imagine a 3D simulation BEFORE you step on the field.  How many hours of ";uh oh, that isn't going to work"; you could bypass.

Anyhow, just thoughts today.

- David
[quote author=Jim Casella link=topic=782.msg3068#msg3068 date=1124303828]
... that cool software that they used in the movie, ";Drumline";...
[/quote]

Werd. You know you've transcended to the next level of rudimental drumming when you're playing sharps and flats on a marching snare drum.

And as far as the original idea goes: Anyone remember that game Oregon Trail from, like, 1985? Maybe someone could just come up with a drum corps-ified version of that. Players could endure the rigors of starting thier own group from scratch, etc. Be a banker from Boston, a carpenter from Ohio, or a timpani player from San Jose. Have one of your basses come down with cholera mid season. Lose an arm to a bear trap. Few kids starve coming over the Rockies. Standard stuff.

I'm tellin' ya: Tapspace, Inc. needs to be aiming for that 4th grade classroom demographic if anyone's gunna retire early!

Ryan
Or there's always that cool software that they used in the movie, ";Drumline"; where you play a bunch of stuff on the drum, and then out from your printer comes a score of what you played. Funny...gotta love Hollywood...
Sibelius had a tenor practice pad set up at PASIC last year with triggers on it.  While the technology is there, the accuracy is not.  Unless you have 100% perfect technique everytime, it will pick up differences and record them as accents and other interesting things.
Has anyone tried putting MIDI triggers on drums or practice pads for notation input? It's something I've always been meaning to try...
jmattson,

Thanks so much for your help. That's exactly the information I was looking for. (I talked to a couple of other folks and they said the same things).

And yeah, my gut instinct was that the idea was mostly unrealistic, but being technologically inept, it seemed cool enough to research a little. And since that's free and all... :)

Thanks again!

Interactive drum pad game thing sounds fun, but the market would be so small, and the cost of making it would quite high.  You would multiply your possible market massively if you made it for drumset players like you mentioned in the other forum, but then you're talking about a lot more hardware making it very expensive.  Even a low budget electric drum set is close to $800.

You would need some kind of MIDI triggered pad(s) that interfaced via USB into the game console (Xbox) which would be hundreds of dollars each because you won't be selling millions of them.  The price to hire a trained crew of software engineers to develop a completely new interface and program engine or license one, plus come up with a training course that considers the many styles of drumming... it seems impossible unless backed by someone with deeeeep pockets.  Typical costs for a modern ";independent low budget"; Xbox game is over a million bucks and they need to sell about 100,000 games to break even.  There is also marketing costs, distribution costs, etc.  (by the way, I researched this last year because my neighbor works at EA games)

Most programs struggle to pay for sticks and drumheads each season- expecting them to pay for an electric drum pad + software is asking a lot, especially if intended for every student.  Marching Percussion / Rudimentary Drumming is a pretty niche market already, and trying to get a software company to make something for it on a game console like Xbox is (in my opinion) pretty unrealistic.  We can't even get DCI finals on PBS unless it's a telethon! 

Well, sorry to shoot down your idea...
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