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Nov 15, 2015
An Introduction to Pure Data (free DorkbotPDX workshop)

DorkbotPDX is happy to offer a free workshop as an introduction to Pure Data (Pd).

When: Sunday, November 15th, 2015. 1-5pm Where: Ctrl-H Hackerspace, 7608 N. Interstate, PDX, OR

Bring: A laptop and headphones

Instructors: Jesse Mejia, Alex Norman, Jason Plumb


In this 4-hour course, students will learn the basics of Pd and will have fun developing foundational Pd patching skills.

Pure Data (Pd) is a free, open-source, community supported data flow language and coding environment with an emphasis on sound, music, and multimedia. It was originally written by Miller Puckette (also the original author of Max/Max MSP) and runs on Linux, Mac OSX, Android, and Windows.

Pd has been used widely in the creation of art -- such as music, sound art, visual art, generative, new-media, and interactive art. Pd interfaces readily with MIDI equipment and many popular microcontrollers.

We have curriculum posted here:

Beginners are welcome. No prior computer programming or sound programming experience is required!

Notes: Students should attempt to install Pd prior to the workshop...but if not, no biggie. We can help with that!

Seating is limited to 20 participants. Please RSVP to [email protected] to reserve a spot.

Attendees will respect The DorkbotPDX code of conduct and will be asked to donate.

Jan 24, 2019
Designing with Sound | Amber Case (live!)
TBA (North Portland)

We're re-booting UX Book Club in the new year with something a little different!

Fan favorite Amber Case will be hosting us (address will be sent to attendees) and giving a presentation on her new book Designing with Sound (and likely her other recent book Calm Technology).

Questions and discussion included.

Doors at 6:30. Presentation at 7:00

Pre-order a hard copy of the book at Amazon (release date is Dec. 13):

Or read on O'Reilly's online learning platform, Safari:

About the book:

Sound can profoundly impact how people interact with your product. Well-designed sounds can be exceptionally effective in conveying subtle distinctions, emotion, urgency, and information without adding visual clutter. In this practical guide, Amber Case and Aaron Day explain why sound design is critical to the success of products, environments, and experiences.

Just as visual designers have a set of benchmarks and a design language to guide their work, this book provides a toolkit for the auditory experience, improving collaboration for a wide variety of stakeholders, from product developers to composers, user experience designers to architects. You’ll learn a complete process for designing, prototyping, and testing sound.

In two parts, this guide includes:

・Past, present, and upcoming advances in sound design ・Principles for designing quieter products ・Guidelines for intelligently adding and removing sound in interactions ・When to use voice interfaces, how to consider personalities, and how to ・build a knowledge map of queries ・Working with brands to create unique and effective audio logos that will ・speak to your customers ・Adding information using sonification and generative audio

About the authors:

Amber Case studies the interaction between humans and computers and how our relationship with information is changing the way cultures think, act, and understand their worlds. Case has spoken, performed and written about the future of sound design at conferences and events around the world. Case is also the author of Calm Technology (O'Reilly, 2015). She lives in Portland, Oregon and online @caseorganic.

Aaron Day (who will not be in attendance) has been designing sound experiences and interfaces since 1998. He has worked for clients including Bruel & Kjaer, Fiat, Ferrari, Maserati, Wire, Mozilla, Qoros, Telefònica, Bosch, Vodafone, Sprint, Siemens Audi and Samsung. Aaron lives with his family in Berlin, Germany.

All participants must read and abide by the Event Code of Conduct.

Event Code of Conduct (Short Version):

Be respectful of other people, respectfully ask people to stop if you are bothered, and if you can’t resolve an issue contact organizers. If you are being a problem, it will be apparent and you’ll be asked to leave.

For a full Code of Conduct please see:

Additionally, we respectfully ask that you do not tag the venue on social media.

Apr 1, 2012
Dorkbot Workshop -- An Introduction to Pure Data
Collective Agency Downtown

Back by popular demand, it's the Dorkbot PDX Introduction to Pure Data. This course is geared at students new to Pd or those who have tinkered in the past and would like another primer.


When: Sunday, April 1st, 2012 Where: Collective Agency (322 NW 6th Ave, Suite 200) in Portland, OR Time: 1-5pm Instructors: Collin, Alex, Jesse, Jason Cost: FREE

About Pd:

Pd (aka Pure Data) is a real-time graphical programming environment for audio, video, and graphical processing. It is the third major branch of the family of patcher programming languages known as Max (Max/FTS, ISPW Max, Max/MSP, jMax, etc.) originally developed by Miller Puckette and company at IRCAM. The core of Pd is written and maintained by Miller Puckette and includes the work of many developers, making the whole package very much a community effort.

May 29, 2011
Dorkbot Workshop -- Focused Workshop: Audio Synthesis
Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA)

f e a t u r i n g __ P d

.......dorkbotpdx is proud to announce.......

A unique, free workshop geared at teaching sound synthesis fundamentals as explored and demonstrated through Pure Data.

Fascinated by orgies of towering analog synthesizes from the 60s? Mesmerized by how computers can generate sound that offends and elates? In this causal yet intense session, we will cover the basics of audio signal theory while exploring the common techniques and tricks used by sound designers and synth builders.

We will progressively cover theories/techniques from the ground up, so no formal experience is required. We will make some noise.


Sunday, May 29, 2011 1-5pm PST


Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) Room 205, Portland, OR, US

Participants should bring:

  • A mac/linux/windows laptop with a functioning Pd installation.
  • A basic/rudimentary knowledge of Pd
  • Headphones
  • An eagerness to learn, develop, and share!

The Pd synthesis workshop is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. Seating is limited (to about 30) on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The PNCA workshops are at the Pacific Nortwest College of Art (1241 NW Johnson St.) from 1-5 in the afternoon, usually in room 205.

Mar 31, 2019
Dorkbot Workshop: Linux Audio and Music Making
CTRL-H Hackerspace

Interested in making music on Linux? Ever wanted to customize your own interface and workflow in your music making? Use your phone to do some mobile EQ-ing a venue, or completely repurpose a midi controller?

In this introductory workshop, we will explore different ways of interfacing with Linux-based audio applications in order to optimize modularity/customizability in an accessible fashion - this class is open to all levels, even if you are brand new to Linux!

I will demonstrate how users can use OSC (Open Sound Control, an alternative and complement to MIDI) to communicate between different programs such as Sooperlooper, Puredata (PD), Ardour, etc. We will utilize open-stage-control to play with how you can make your own GUI in an easy way. We will also glimpse at integrating some modules from automatonism in PD, which should feel familiar for synth lovers. I recommend installing and playing around with automatonism in PD (or another flavor of PD such as purrdata ) if you get the chance beforehand!

A Raspberry Pi or Linux laptop will be sufficient for this class, but you will probably want to use a usb sound card or an audio hat unless youdon't mind lots of cracks and pops! We will try to have as many computers available as we can on hand.

Mar 25, 2021
Have you heard about this startup…?
Twitter Spaces

I ( have been looking for an excuse to user Twitter Spaces, the audio only Clubhouse competitor. And an idea dawned on my that was basically an audio version of Silicon Florist. What if I held a Spaces event where founders got to pitch their startup or startup concept to an audience?

We've had a number of amazing founders sign up to participate. Now, we need an audience to listen to their pitches. Won't you please join us?

If you’ve got a startup to pitch at a future event — it doesn’t have to be tech — please sign up. We'll ask you to deliver a three minute pitch on your company. And then I may ask you a couple of follow up questions, but we won’t open it up to a full Q&A. So it should be a safe space. That means, even if you haven’t perfected your pitch, it’s a good environment to practice.

Nov 9, 2010
Using Windows 7 - Portland PC Users Group - Visitors Welcome
Gateway Elks Lodge

Using Windows 7 What is New & What You Need to Know to Get More Done A Microsoft guest speaker will demonstrate key features that will make your computing easier. A good question and answer session follows.

This is a real Users Group with both computer professionals and hobbyists. You will feel at home. Enjoy our special guest speaker, enjoy the venue and enjoy the company of other PC users.

Great venue: free parking, digital projector with huge screen, WiFi, etc. Sample newsletter on home page of our website. Venue: Gateway Elks Lodge in the Gateway district. 711 NE 100th Ave, just N. of Glisan St. Non-Elks welcome – just sign in as guests. Thank you to the Elks for letting us use your meeting room on Tuesday! No charge tonight. Bring a friend.

Jan 27, 2011
Westside Programmers
OTBC (Oregon Technology Business Center)

A polyglot programming group meeting in the heart of The Beave. We seem to talk a lot about oddball programming languages and their features. And the usual geekery you'd expect from a programmer's group.

This month's talk is by Richard Fobes:

"Faster than an FFT, the audio-oriented QRST (spectral transform)"

Based on the interest Phil and Ed expressed in my spectral transform, I've spent lots of time during the past two months further developing the software. Besides getting it to work better -- it still needs refinement -- I've ended up creating an audio-compression method I call QRST. I'll be playing sound files to demonstrate what the spectral transform, the audio-compression format, and decompression back into sound files can do, so this will be much more interesting than the words "spectral transform" suggest.

BTW, being faster than the FFT is just one of the side effects of having designed it for use with sound files. Fourier transforms are sooo ssllooww.

Mar 14, 2018
Workshop: Starting a Podcast

Podcasting is one of the most accessible ways to build a brand and get your voice out to public.

In this introductory course, Hatch Innovation's Channelsmith, Collin Gabriel, will help you understand the gear, software, and service options you will need to get your podcast off the ground. From low cost/no cost options to premium services, this will be a fast paced review of what it takes to establish your RSS stream on the channels available, obtain high quality sound, and the best options to conduct interviews remotely.

Soon you will be entertaining earballs everywhere and adding to the diversity of voices that make podcasts such an awesome tool for learning.

Bring: You should bring a laptop and a willingness to learn! You do not need to know anything about programming.

Instructor: Collin Gabriel, Hatch Innovation's Channelsmith