John's "Gold Star for Documentation" Awards

The first Gold Star for Documentation goes to . . .drumroll . . .

:star2:Algoritmarte VCV Rack Modules:star2:

All the gozintas and gozoutas are explained, the effects of parameters and knob-twisting, what voltage levels are expected, each module has an overview at the start to give an idea of what it might be useful for, the names of the modules are somewhat descriptive (if a bit whimsical),
The largest one, “Zefiro”, is even broken down into its ten main sections, each with a partial image of the panel and details on how they work.

So, here’s to Algoritmarte! :fireworks:

I hope to be awarding more Gold Stars in the future via this thread, as I discover worthy recipients.

8 Likes

best one, hands down, is Aria Salvatrice’s manual methinks

10 Likes

I agree

+1 for Aria

+2 for aria :stuck_out_tongue:

1 Like

Geodesics have great documentation too :slight_smile: Which is amazing ! Because the modules aren’t really straightforward, but after a read of the manuals it all makes sense !

5 Likes

Not VCV, but today acquired Acustica Audio’s Cream 2 plugin for free as part of the Focsrite/Novation collective and the (PDF) manual is remarkable, they’ve done it like a tongue in cheek version of Dante’s inferno along with sepia worn illustrations etc. It takes quite a lot to make me read any manual these days so they did well.

+1 for nysthi

7 Likes

I would like a silver or bronze start, please. My manuals aren’t great, but they are decent, and all of my 25-30 modules were released with documentation. There is a direct link from every module’s context menu that directly opens the manual.

3 Likes

John runs off to check it out.

:clock1: :clock2: :clock3: :clock4: :clock5: :clock6:

Okay, another Gold Star goes to . . .

:star2:Aria Salvatrice :star2:

A clever design (behaviour of those patch cords when scrolling), and a quirky presentation, but it does the job. :+1:

5 Likes

Slime Child Audio’s manual for Substation is def pro-level, as well. Clear, comprehensive, amply illustrated, and well-designed with a strong, cohesive aesthetic.

:chef’s kiss:

1 Like

That color scheme is a bit odd, the white is too bright in regards to the not all that dark mauve tone methinks, but clear it is indeed…

Slime Child Audio - I can’t really make many pronouncements about modules that are behind a paywall because I cannot determine if the docs accurately describe the modules, BUT they do seem pretty good.

-1 For the low-contrast colour scheme (manuals and modules appearance). In this respect I will have to partially disagree with fractalgee.

+1 For repeating some phrases that should not have to be repeated, but doing so removes any doubt. (eg. ATTACK and DECAY parameters for the ENVELOPE module)

0 penalty for lack of descriptions for the Blank panels. :crazy_face:

So, an honourable mention at the very least. :+1:

Ooh, almost a year has gone by.

A new award for — drumroll please — :star2:Submarine :star2:

High points:

All the gozintas and gozoutas are described, for every module (or series of similar modules).

A complete list of AO-1xx Algorithms for the Arithmetic Operator series of modules. However, I would have used “plus” in place of the word “and” in the descriptions column. “And” makes me think of the logical “AND” operator, which (if I recall correctly) is a species of multiplication of (single-digit?) binary operands. Once you figure out one instance, the rest are easy to understand, so not many points were lost there.

And, (Bonus!) an application example that uses one of them - “A sine wave oscillator using AO-106” - with a detail explanation of what does what. So often, the docs don’t have any hint about why a particular module might be useful.

Also, Details of the available [logic] gates for the Digital Operators modules, complete with Truth Tables.

3 Likes

Hmmm. I’ve only recently begun to see the appeal of many of the Geodesics modules. Strange in appearance, but interesting in use, especially IONS and PULSARS.

An award goes to . . .

Geodesics

Sorry, I had to downgrade it to a silver star, because the terminology is needlessly … quirky. For example, the control labeled “Planck Constant” is explained as “Quantize”. If they simply made the label say “Quantize”, that would save a lot of head-scratching. Also, that “Energy” really means “Range”, as in voltage or octave range (which is dependant on the state of “Planck Constant”). “Quantum Leap” has nothing to do with quantizing, but it should.

@Olival_Clanaro : You’re right. In the end, once you get acquainted with the “code words” used for one module, other modules are somewhat easier to make sense of, so it’s not a fatal flaw.

I had my doubts about the circular schemes of some of the panels being some sort of visual aesthetic choice (I regard the panel layout and labeling as the “front line” of documentation), but they make a certain amount of sense here, and saves quite a bit of real estate, compared to a straight left-to-right layout.

BTW, with VCV’s “Random”, Count Modulo’s “Switch 1-16”, two of NSYTHI’s “S&H/Eight”, and 15 of Stoermelder’s “µMap”, I came up with a scheme for randomizing the values in the IONS’ Steps. Saved that business as a Selection for use elsewhere.

1 Like

A lot of ppl like “quirky”. I don’t, but all those years without any stars and I threw in the towel.

Thank you.

Is there an official banner i can put on my site?:stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Well it’s been a year without a mention, honourable or otherwise, so I’m just going to leave these here in case they have been accidentally overlooked :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

6 Likes

Uh . . . Sure . . . Here ya go:

I had it made up special. No, really.

1 Like

Hmmm. :face_with_monocle: They do look pretty good, given a quick skim, but I find that the best test is to actually use the modules and then see if I can easily find what I need to know. And … I’ve not tried to use them yet.

I don’t go out looking for documentation just to review it. I just stumble upon it as needed.

I am nostalgic for the days when you would buy, say, a 2400 Bd modem, and it came with a manual the size of the O.E.D.