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Live Electronics Tutorial with examples in Pure Data and the ELSE Library
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Live Electronic Music Tutorial

###With examples in Pure Data and the ELSE Library

Copyright © 2008-2019 Alexandre Torres Porres


Version: 1.0 beta-17 (Unreleased)


This tutorial presents theory and practice of Live Electronics topics without any prerequisite. It's aimed at newbies, dummies, enthusiasts and also experts.

This didactic work is licenced via Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) which allows downloading and sharing with proper credit. It also forbids its usage for comercial purposes. Check the license at:

This is a didactic project developed with Pure Data (or just "Pd", a.k.a. "Pd vanilla" distribution), an open source software developed by Miller Puckette - get it at Also Access for other resources on Pd. The official Pd mailing list is found here: Note that Pd-Extended and Purr Data (which are the main forks of Pure Data) are incompatible.

Pure Data is adopted in the examples for its accessibility and for being a powerful didactic tool. Nonetheless, this work relies heavily in the ELSE library for Pure Data, also developed by Alexandre Torres Porres, the author of this tutorial. You can install the "ELSE" library directly via Pd by going to the "Help" menu and clicking on "Find Externals", then just search for 'else'. For more details on the ELSE library, check:, where you can also download and check earlier versions of the library.

This project started in 2008 as a textbook for a computer music course. In 2009, the author presented a paper about it in the 3rd International Pure Data Convention. Currently, the work is divided into two volumes and solely presented as example patches that the author uses in his courses/workshops. The plan now is to write a book accompanied by these examples. Originally developed in brazilian portuguese and relying on Pd Extended 0.42-5 for years, this has just been rewritten from scratch in english and ported to rely only in objects from the ELSE external library and the newer Pd Vanilla versions.

This is still in the early drafts from the first translation round, so many typos and mistakes may exist. There are plans to include more topics and examples in this tutorial, which can furtherly be split into 3 volumes. The developments now depend mostly on the software development of the ELSE library to include more examples. Since the ELSE library is still in an early beta stage of development, some objects may change in functionality, new objects are being developed and others might even be deleted until a final version is out. If so, future updates of this didactc material will reflect these changes.

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