Control Flags

Control flags are at the end of the number constants in the module connection input list. They allow you to set modules to respond to the associated events when the play list is running. The most basic use is to connect Hold inputs to clocks, counters, etc., to the Stop flag so the modules will be in hold (or reset, if reset input is used) until the Play button is clicked. In this way, you can set up your modules to start at in an exact, known state when you record them to MIDI.

Begin goes to 127 during the Begin step, the same step marked with the Begin button in the play list. When not on the Begin step, it goes to 0.

End goes to 127 during the End step, as marked with the End button in the play list. Otherwise it is 0.

Key flags: see below.

Page is always the number of the SoftStep Snapshot currently running.

Run is 127 when the Play button is pressed, otherwise it is 0.

Stop is 127 when the Play button is not pressed - when Stop or Pause is pressed - otherwise it is 0.

TLoad is a Trigger flag that goes to 127 when an SoftStep .ssp file is first loaded, then returns to 0.

TStart is a Trigger flag that goes to 127 when SoftStep is first started, then returns to 0.

Turbo gives you access to the internal cycle counter. Counts 0-127, and repeats, at turbo speed (64th note triplets).

Whole gives the number of whole notes since the internal clocks are reset (as when Run/Stop is clicked). This is useful for timing events in a composition such as volume changes, etc. You can delay the onset of the whole note count by setting the Options window WN Delay value.

The FCP (Floating Control Panel) values are available as slider-1 through slider-16 for control panel Sliders 1-16.

In addition to these control flags, there is an internal flag that automatically resets some modules whenever the internal clocks are reset (as when Run/Stop is clicked). The modules affected are those that always would want to be reset at these times, such as the MIDI modules which send out their control information, and the counting modules which reset to 0. You can not access this flag directly, but you can turn it off by un-checking the Reset Modules checkbox in the Options window.

Key Flags:

Although not really control flags, the keyboard flags are accessed with the control flag group in the connections list pop up, so they will be described here.

There are three key flags that work together to give you access to whatever computer keyboard keys are struck. These are:

KeyChar is the numeric value of most recent keyboard character you have typed.

KeyCtrl is the numeric value of any control keys pressed. 0= no control keys pressed; 1= Shift key; 2= Control key; 4 = Alt key. If more than one control key is pressed, the values add. For example Shift+Control = 3. You can separate combined key values with the Mask or AND module.

KeyDown goes from 0 to 1 when you strike a key, then if you continue to hold the key down, the number increases at the keyboard repeat rate. Thus, you can use the 0 to non zero status to detect that a key has been struck, and you can use the incrementing value to determine if the key is continuing to be held down.

For key flags to be active, SoftStep must be the program with Windows Focus. Windows Focus means the program is visible and the title bar has the focus color. Only then will the keyboard flags show a change when you strike a key. SoftStep continues to work even when it is in the background or minimized, but you can only use the key flags when it is the focus window.

SoftStep is Copyright © 1999-2004 by John Dunn and Algorithmic Arts. All Rights Reserved.