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Amadeus, Amadeus!

Amadeus II v.3.8 and Its Creator By Ko Maruyama
Amadeus is the brilliant audio editor from Hairersoft for the Mac, released several years ago.  Amadeus II is the newest incarnation of this software, and in the new year it will be released in a much more evolved version 3.8.

By turning on Amadeus II, amazing feats of audio capture, manipulation and editorial are made simple, but its processes are anything but ordinary.  I had a chance to catch up to uber-programmer and owner of Hairersoft, Martin Hairer to find out what inspired this software and what we could expect in the new release.

I should note that Hairer's modesty conceals his amazing talents outside of Amadeus II.  He holds several degrees, including a PhD in Physics.  He is a Lecturer at the Warwick Mathematics Institute, and is currently researching various mathematic models, mainly the study of long-time behavior of various probabilistic models....  you know- mostly infinite-dimensional models, like those arising from fluid dynamics.  Wow!  Of course, when he's not up to his elbows in formulae, he and his wife are out and about, or cooking to the sounds of Pink Floyd or Jean Jacques Goldman.

Hairer started writing small programs on a programmable pocket calculator by the age of 12, and after his parents purchased a Macintosh, he began to write many other applications, including one that would generate fractals, and another that would simulate simple electric circuits.

Work on the original build of Amadeus began in 1992.  Initially, Hairer intended to create software that would recover the musical score from a digitized piece of music.  To such ends, he had to write a piece of software that would read a sound, record sound, and possibly have some basic editorial features as well.  Martin recalls, "At this stage, I also wrote some of the analyzing functions (spectrum and sonogram), mainly for myself, so that I could have an idea of how the digitized music looks like. The aim of the whole project was to enter the European Union Young Scientists Contest <>. It turned out that I was indeed selected in 1993 at the National contest to represent Switzerland in the European contest, but they (later) realized that I had already participated to the European contest a few years earlier in 1991, with the electric circuit simulation program."

The Young Scientists Contest rule, allowing only one lifetime entry barred Amadeus from ever being presented.   With the disqualification from the contest, the grand scale of the original goal, and Martin's pending university studies, he switched the focus of development to increase Amadeus' editorial potential.

The first version of Amadeus were written in Pascal; with a complete rebuild in C++ giving birth to Amadeus II.  Although some of the interface elements migrated from one version to the other, Hairer took advantage of the benefits of C++ to give Amadeus II a face lift and several new features.



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Related Keywords:Amadeus, Audio, QuickTime, Martin Hairer, Audio Editing, VST Plugins, Hairersoft


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