norns: ideas

well this talk reminds me of an idea from a while ago - probably won’t make it myself

generation loss:

a delay with a write head that runs a lossy compression algorithm. on each pass, the read head feeds back into the write head, further re-compressing the buffer on every delay repeat.


I’m sure there’s something like a Shoutcast server or w/e that you can run on Norns which listens to jack and then you turn the quality right down, and then also run the client.

If you’re lucky it will give enough latency that you can make an mp3 delay with feedback. Like how some noise artists use baby monitors.


sounds like Lossy — by Goodhertz, Inc.

Is there a script that’s just a tweakable synth engine like zynthian? I know the mx stuff is vast but wondering if there’s just a dedicated midi controlled synth that could cover a lot of tweakable range

I’d say Molly the Polly is that for polyphonic synths (the UI is very simple, but you can tweak everything via params menu), and Passersby is that for monophonic synths. There’s probably more newer ones but IMO those are the classic two


Has there ever been a discussion of exposing a cronjob interface on Norns? It could make more fun things like freesound-of-the-day easy to set up, along with utility scripts (like file conversions or backups or whatever).

I think it would be possible to stick a crontab into dust, which is a little rough but would mostly do the job. There are probably a bunch of more elegant ways, though.

As far as cron goes neither the factory norns nor the rpi3 based devices have a real-time clock so the notion of time at the OS level of fluid at best. The current behavior is that when the a network connection is first establish the device attempts to synchronize with a time server and the clock will jump as a result. The isn’t the end of the world but could be challenging to work about depending on the ambition.

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Oh, that’s interesting. And I imagine that you wouldn’t want to encourage people to load up processor-intensive tasks in the background. That said, it does sound like a version of this is possible. If there isn’t opposition to it, I might enjoy the opportunity to poke around the Norns code and figure out a way to integrate the idea into Maiden.

Cron tasks can also be set to trigger after x amount of time after boot, not the same as looking for a world clock but it can let you run a job after a certain amount of time up. Looks something like:

@reboot sleep{time in seconds} task

(Edit: this is probably the wrong syntax, I run one Cron process to use a pi zero as a video looper, but I have to dig into my notes every time I put it on a new machine)

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An Idea I Am Ill Equipped To Execute: I find myself wanting some more chaos in my musical life. It’d be really neat to get some ports/approximations of some Nonlinear Circuits modulation or some more Peter Blasser-inspired stuff. I’m just brain-dumping as it gets closer to my bed time, so bear with me as I’m not quite sure what I’m talking about, but I’m thinking systems that evolve over extended periods but that aren’t necessarily drone oriented nor focused on melody but rather about modulating sound-shaping parameters. Modulation feedback systems and what-not. Maybe to send CCs to control external gear, maybe for some internal synth engine noise fun.

I know we have blippoo, and that’s fun as hell, but I guess I’m feeling greedy and asking for more of that—and more.

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Idea: a script which allows you to tune into and sample/effect/mutate streams from


Or maybe more online radio stations, I’m sure there are lists of streams somewhere out there :slight_smile:

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yeah a general stream player would be nice but one that is limited to the 'incredibly polite remake of THX 1138" type soundscape of the railroad scanner streams seems more Norns :slight_smile:

IDEA: use Awake on it’s default settings on an album track as a homage to the track on Alec Empire Vs Elvis Presley where it’s just a pitchshifted voice over one of the Gameboy Camera menu screen musics

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I don’t know if this is exactly what you’re looking for but there is also Benjolis a rungler inspired script in the same territory as the blippoo box/ciat lonbarde

Are there any Norns apps that play with midi effects, ala the blokas midihub/squarp pyramid?


Ah, yes, you’re totally right. Meant to mention that when I said blippoo.

norns script idea:

a script that checks out the community.json file and lists the available scripts on screen. using encoders/keys to select a script runs the appropriate ;install command.


Is this not what Folio does? Or is it different somehow? folio - #4 by Doberman


oh! that is awesome, thanks for reminding me about folio! :cowboy_hat_face:


Dnd is getting me into these sort of noisy zones with extreme settings + everything mapped to midi controls


Good thinking. Been meaning to, but have yet to, mess around with dnd. Thanks for reminding me.