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Welcome to SuperCollider 3!
SuperCollider is an environment and programming language for real time audio
synthesis and algorithmic composition. It provides an interpreted
object-oriented language which functions as a network client to a state of the
art, realtime sound synthesis server.
SuperCollider was written by James McCartney ( over a period of
many years. It is now an open source GPL'd project maintained and developed by
James and various others. It is used by musicians, scientists, and artists
working with sound.
This README is a first help for anyone new to SuperCollider. There are many
good resources available for learning SuperCollider, with up to date links from
the site listed above, including links to forums and mailing lists.
Since version 3.6 SuperCollider consists of three separate components:
- sound synthesiser (audio server)
- programming language (and language interpreter)
- code editor (integrated development environment, or shortly, IDE)
To begin using SuperCollider, you usually first start up the IDE:
- on Mac OS simply start up the application
- on Linux and Windows, start up the 'scide' executable
From here on, you can get further help by using the IDE's integrated help
system which can be invoked via the "Help" menu or using the key combination
Ctrl+D (on Linux, Windows) or Cmd+D (on Mac OS). In the Help menu, you will
also find an action that will take you directly to the help page on using the
When starting the SuperCollider IDE, the audio server is not started
automatically. You can start it using the "Language > Boot Server" menu action,
or using the key combination Ctrl+B (on Linux, Windows) or Cmd+B (on Mac OS).
This is just to remind you in case you're impatient and can't understand why
you're not immediately getting sound.
We suggest you to proceed by reading the tutorials available in the help
system. Please note that some help pages are not up-to-date with the latest
development of SuperCollider, especially when mentioning the code editing
environment. Regarding this, it is best to refer to the help page specifically
about the new SuperCollider IDE.
Also, please explore the IDE menus, which will let you discover a lot of
functionality of the coding environment.
Building the Source Code
Platform specific build and install instructions can be found in the
README_${PLATFORM}.txt files
We hope you enjoy SuperCollider; please get involved in the active community!
SuperCollider is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under
the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software
Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later
version. See "COPYING" for the license text.
SuperCollider 3.1 was released on October 31, 2007
SuperCollider 3.2 was released on February 19, 2008
SuperCollider 3.3 was released on April 30, 2009
SuperCollider 3.4 was released on July 15, 2010
SuperCollider 3.5 was released on March 16, 2012
SuperCollider 3.6 was released on November 28, 2012
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