I've said this multiple times here now, but the Touch Bar is really a joy to use and very useful if you're not the person who's always using only Vim. My personal feeling is that the people who dislike the Touch Bar heard the bad things about it, tried it for a time and two, decided that it's not something good, and spreading the word.
Text suggestion is super useful, the emoji selector is useful very much, text formatting controls are very useful, debugging controls are super useful (and much superior than fn keys), moving between tabs are super useful, etc... Really I can't understand all of the hate that the Touch Bar gets on HN.
And yes, you can touch-type on the Touch Bar, it's not context-sensitive enough to develop muscle memory. You can just reach out your finger from your keyboard without seeing when you're using a particular app. You get muscle memory on how to trash the files on the Finder, comment out a line or rename a variable in Xcode, control display or volumes, move between videos... (And you can type esc super-reliably without looking at all, so really 'You can't use Vim with the Touch Bar' is a bit exaggerated.)
One tip for all of the Touch Bar MBP users - you might want to install the app HapticKey, which is a very super useful app that provides haptic feedback on every Touch Bar touch. I consider this the biggest mistake on Apple's part - with haptic feedback it's much easier to develop muscle memory (although I did develop muscle memory without this app too).
: https://github.com/niw/HapticKey - or you might like 'brew cask install haptickey'.
My company-issued laptop has a Touch Bar, and I can only imagine that it was invented and distributed by some kind of malicious clique of saboteurs within Apple who hate both (1) users and (2) Apple and want both to fail.
Brushing the Touch Bar accidentally with a finger leads Siri to interrupt me, silencing whatever video call I'm on or music I'm listening to. Instead of being able to adjust the volume manually or pause what I'm listening to with a key that I can press without looking, I have to flatten and retract my hands, peer down at the touchbar, and then poke through several options just in order to do a simple operation, all the while terrified that Siri will interrupt me.
I've been using the touchbar for over a year now, and I still find that I get nothing out of it that physical keys couldn't have done better. I like that I can figure out which keys are for volume or brightness without having to look down. I need that at night when I'm playing something on my laptop but I want to gradually lower the volume and brightness without my contacts in or my eyes shut. If my personal Macbook had a touchbar, I could never do that reliably.
It sort of baffles me why they went with a touch bar and not with keys that have OLED in them that are easily tweakable. Or how about add some bumps to it so that my finger can know where it is without me looking?
No. It's got to be a flat bar.
I do wish Apple would improve media controls on the Mac in general (and touchbar). So often the media icon just doesn't show (e.g. Spotify), or I've had several media apps running and macOS gets confused and the media icons no longer do anything for what's currently playing. It's soo buggy.
MTMR (My Touchbar My Rules) took me all of 15 minutes to install and configure to my liking. Then another few minutes to tweak it (adding brightness and volume buttons on either side of their respective sliders) when I realized I wanted both control mechanisms available.
In the time it takes to complain about the default config you could have fixed 100% of the things about it that bother you.
This is a perfect example of why Apple is cool at reimagining and reengineering, but it is not an enterprise company. That may not matter to some, but it does to many.
The tb came that way, but it wasn't correct in placement or how many it had to be touched when the tb was dark. The tb isn't good for programmers when quickly typing text. It's also a complete change for changing volume quickly. This comes into play when switching multiple times every day between full volume meetings on headphones and full or medium volume on speakers. The tb doesn't act the same as original keys just by adding virtual keys.
Yes, these are first-world problems, but this was completly needless and makes the keyboard less useful than all of the other mac keyboard I use daily. It's like Apple thinks that people have one and only one computer they ever use.
Also with volume/brightness you can press and slide instead of tapping and then adjusting. Hope that helps!
Just curious, what OS version are you using? I'm on Big Sur (but same issue in Catalina).
I've got the 2017 MBP 15"
EDIT: I should add, I mean that I could hit the far left blank aria of the touch bar any time in any touchbar mode and it would trigger the esc action. They "fixed" that in an update.
I can still press to the left of the esc and trigger esc when the esc button is visible. But often I'll have spotify touch bar "app" open and the esc key won't show, so I have to close the app just to access the esc key, super annoying.
>About 90 per cent of computer users don't use CTRL-F to search for a word - as they don't know such a keyboard shortcut exists, a Google survey found. The results stunned Google's Uber Tech Lead for Search Quality and User Happiness, Dan Russell.
"I think we just all assume that we all know it, but no one actually does."
For the 90% of users who don't know that Ctrl-F is find, having a row of contextual command icons for the foreground program instead of a row of useless function keys is a step up.
I think they should just continue to make standard function keys available for the minority of users who find them important to their own workflow.
True professional-only tools are things like Jira and Oracle Financials, and you can recognise them because the users hate them.
We have "Print Screen", which is a function I don't use that often.
(Not a Mac user, so I'm talking about regular PC keyboards).
In the old days I had a Sun workstation with Copy and Paste keys.
The computer (or OS) might come with one, but commercial software would also include a cardboard strip in the box, along with the manuals.
Many examples: https://www.getrevue.co/profile/shift-happens/issues/as-clos...
edit: Plus thanks for the link! I've not read the article but the pics are great up to the end! So much inventivity on how to upgrade bona fide keyboards with relatively low tech all through computer history!
That's a very roundabout way of saying "people tried it, hate it, and told others: UNFAIR." In essence that argument can be used to dismiss anyone who dislikes the Touch Bar because they MIGHT have read something negative about it at some point, and therefore have been corrupted from forming their own first-hand opinion (???).
I'd love to ignore the Touch Bar, but since they stole the F key row for it, I cannot. I am forced to use it to interact with software that once worked fine. Since there's no physical feedback, and the virtual keys aren't correctly aligned with the physical ones: it is a frustration. At least we regained the escape key.
As to why I don't actively use it: I look at the screen, not the top of my hands. The content is on the screen, if you can touch type you shouldn't ever be looking down, so the Touch Bar is an anti-feature put in completely the wrong location (i.e. above the keyboard, instead under the screen) for people who struggle to type.
I think the touchbar is superb for general non-techie users who are not keyboard shortcut wiz, and there are A LOT of them.
The thing I found sad is the lack of push from Apple, to make it more useful and versatile. It's nearly the same since its inception. People have to rely on 3rd party app, say, BetterTouchTool(which is excellent) to make Touchbar more useful.
Hmm, I'm not a native English speaker so I might have not exactly conveyed my intentions. I'm definitely not trying to argue that other people are unfair, but more just that people should try it out a bit more.
> I'd love to ignore the Touch Bar, but since they stole the F key row for it, I cannot.
I'm genuinely curious about this F-keys every time I write about the Touch Bar - I've never encountered use for those keys that are really useful.
> Since there's no physical feedback
Yeah, that part I agree. If you're still suffering about it (regardless whether you use Touch Bar regularly or not), you might want the HapticKey app that I've mentioned it previously.
> The content is on the screen, if you can touch type you shouldn't ever be looking down
Well, because the Touch Bar's layout is pretty stable, I find that I can touch-type the Touch Bar without looking down the screen. It becomes muscle memory, just like a usual keyboard.
There are some very common operations across apps (Linux/Windows) that I use all the time and can be stabbed without thinking:
F2 - rename
F5 - refresh
F11 - fullscreen
If you are programmer then it's kind of essential during debugging:
F5 - run / continue
F9 - insert breakpoint
F10 - step over
F11 - step in
Not having physical keys for navigating would be a nightmare.
I've never used any of them you've listed (except for F5-refresh, which I avoid and use Cmd-R). The fn-keys are as context-dependent as the Touch Bar and it's even more opaque than what it does just by glancing the buttons.
For debug tools, Xcode unfortunately doesn't provide Touch Bar buttons for them (which I think is a pity), but IntelliJ IDEA seems to be providing them.
With this example I'm firmly thinking that having fn-keys just for the sake of people who do know a bit of key shortcuts would be a nightmare.
I would be much more supportive of ideas like "keys with displays" or a non-interactive strip to act as labels. What I dream of is physical pixels for tactile displays or a fleet of magnetic microbots that can swarm together to form switches, knobs and sliders at will.
However, there's also a class of users that _do not look at the keyboard_ (if only, for very specific complex actions which only require lookup and execution, not reflexion).
For this class of people at least, the _visual_ touch bar introduces an uncontrolled* modal change to the keyboard which is a true nature change of the role and expectations one can have of the keyboard.
That, in turn, may be a good enough reason to be very frustratred with it, and not use it at all.
As for me, I'm happy for, although I don't understand, people that appreciate the touch bar. And I don't use it. And I expect to get my next laptop without one.
* uncontrolled, because not triggered by the user.
Well then your personal feeling is really an untested assumption masquerading as a feeling.
I'm a long-time developer, and more recently, a designer of interfaces and graphics. Aside from my 20 years of muscle memory with vim, the primary reason I hate the Touch Bar is the same reason I hate touch screens in cars: if I have to look away from where I'm supposed to be looking because my controls provide no physical feedback, then that's a design failure. If you're going to provide this as an unobtrusive addition to the current features, then super... but they replaced standard functionality with something that was worse in many ways, and kinda neat in other, much less important ways. Much like when they suddenly replaced Google Maps on iPhones with Apple Maps before Google had their iOS app ready. Apple Maps had a much-touted gimmicky 3d flyover feature, but the users lost street view, transit, and bicycle directions and the directions themselves were significantly worse. Sure, it looked cool and the flyover feature was really neat... but who gives a damn if you're losing core functionality.
Within months of having my first MacBook Pro, I could turn the volume up and down and mute the audio without looking. Same with the screen brightness... I can't do that anymore. Not only that, but the interface for changing the volume— a core system function— changes depending on the current application's context, making me have to hunt for it. Maybe you don't run up against that, but it's inexcusably poor design.
In addition, the Touch Bar isn't big enough to be useful for any serious professional use in media editing apps, which seems to be what it was originally designed for. I can't use it to easily scrub through video clips with any precision, or large amounts of pictures, or anything like that. Sure, it might be a nice-to-have for a less intensive user, but it's certainly not a PROfessional tool for my MacBook PRO.
On top of that, it's totally useless for accessibility, it's easy to accidentally touch and do something unintended, and makes simple tap-n-times motions into awkward tap, wait, drag motions.
All set. Throw it away. Give me my buttons back.
I felt this 'tried it for a time and too, decided that it's not something good, and spreading the word' from your comment. Maybe it's not, but the content doesn't really suggest you've used the Touch Bar more than a few times.
> Within months of having my first MacBook Pro, I could turn the volume up and down and mute the audio without looking. Same with the screen brightness... I can't do that anymore. Not only that, but the interface for changing the volume— a core system function— changes depending on the current application's context, making me have to hunt for it. Maybe you don't run up against that, but it's inexcusably poor design.
I can, my friends that use the MBP can, and even friends that don't have an MBP but occasionally use mine also don't need to look to control the volumes or brightness. I can't buy that argument.
Also, in it's default state the buttons are always displayed in the same place - I can't understand about your argument about context-sensitive core system functions, as that's the reason why the control strip is there in the right.
(And usually apps that use the Touch Bar strikes the right balance on context sensitivity - you can expect the same functionality on the same place if you're using the same app, or doing the same action, like text editing.)
> In addition, the Touch Bar isn't big enough to be useful for any serious professional use in media editing apps, which seems to be what it was originally designed for.
> it's certainly not a PROfessional tool for my MacBook PRO.
It's big enough to provide shortcuts that allow professionals to be more productive in apps that the user thoroughly knows in-and-out. That's it's purpose, and media professionals as well as programmers can use it very usefully.
> it's totally useless for accessibility,
> it's easy to accidentally touch and do something unintended,
I've personally found that's not the case, but well I'm seeing others that also feel like this so...
> and makes simple tap-n-times motions into awkward tap, wait, drag motions.
I can't find any example where that's the case - I've never seen an Touch Bar action that need a tap-wait-drag. It's usually drag on the button or just a tap, or two successive taps if you're doing something relatively complex like setting the color of selected text or something.
I wanted to like the Touch Bar. I actually did for the first two weeks. Then I slowly grew to hate it once I realized I accidentally touched it more than intentionally.
I know I'd miss the F keys, but since you don't have them anyway...
My new job just sent me a new MacBook, and I was dreading it. I'm happy to report that it has a physical Escape key (smaller and imperfect, but sufficient), and the keyboard feels better overall. I still don't want the TouchBar, and still get no use out of it, but it no longer enrages me. I'm open to accepting and even embracing it if I ever see a good use case. One thing that continues to bother me is that it changes as I'm typing, and I don't want that. But I can see a path for apps to use it in a positive way.
With caps-lock mapped to ctrl, typing it is not too far off from the home-row.
Activate the complex modification called
"Change caps_lock to control if pressed with
other keys, to escape if pressed alone".
Now you have a capslock key that doubles as control and escape
and your pinky can begin recovering from the decades of abuse.
https://karabiner-elements.pqrs.org/ has an option that maps caps lock to control when press in conjunction with another key and as escape when pressed alone
This is great, thanks for posting.
It needs to have a force touch, so that just hovering or touching it won't activate it. you need to press down. Until this is implemented the whole touch bar is just annoying.
Oh and when you need to use BetterTouchTool to actually make the touch bar useful then something is really wrong.
Alos use th same too to map fn+<> for volume up down and other things. just because looking for that on the touch bar is just ... stupid.
I have tried to for two years and still find it useless...
With Better Touch Tool I have basically recreated the old Fn key layout and now it's half-ways bearable. If they at least hadn't made it pure touch but something with resistance I wouldn't constantly hit it by accident...
* I still hit the function keys at least a half dozen times a day by accident.
* I still manage to not register fast key presses to the Touch Bar at least half a dozen times a day by accident.
* About once a month, it seems, the Touch Bar gets stuck on its volume or brightness widget. Previously the only way I found to fix this was to reboot. Last night I may have discovered that touching other, seemingly blank parts of the Bar may get it out of this state, so at least the Touch Bar may no longer force me to reboot.
Text completion on my laptop usually slows me down, but in any case, my editor offers that for me inline, without me having to look down at the keyboard. I know all the shortcuts to delete files in Finder, comment out lines, rename variables, control volumes, change tabs, and control text formatting.
All this is to say that I guess I am not the target demographic for the Touch Bar—and, since all the new MBPs seem to have it, I guess I'm no longer the demographic for the MacBook Pro? I am inclined to agree with the comment from 'GeekyBear that I am probably in the vast minority of users, and most people will find use for the Touch Bar.
I am glad you find the Touch Bar useful. For my part, I hate it, and it's one factor that's got me looking for the exits on macOS.
I would like to second your suggestion to add haptic feedback to the Touch Bar. I use BetterTouchTool for this, and it helps me to know when I have accidentally hit the Touch Bar.
Also, I hate the Touch Bar, but Sampler looks really cool.
And I'm not even using F keys on regular keyboards.
Beware of overheating: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IULkXAHjL_s
The number of frequent operations that use F-keys makes the touch bar a truly frustrating experience.
I switched to a Matias keyboard to avoid the touch bar. An added benefit is their placement of the fn key, which is really nice if you use various OSes.
I did find I had to customise the Firefox touchbar shortcuts so I don't brush them accidentally.
But I love things like how VS.Code puts common shortcuts as buttons instead of trying to make me remember them. I have better things to do with my memory than remember keyboard shortcuts.
Actually you can memorize unlimited number of shortcuts. I remember roughly 500 shortcuts for different programs and OS, it's just a matter of time. As touch typing, this investment pays off very satisfactory over time
i specifically want to call out moving between tabs. in absolutely no way is the touchbar better than keyboard shortcuts. there is one app where it might be better: safari. because they chose such poor shortcut for switching tabs.
i guess there is one more good use case. if you allocated rarely used and hard to locate MS word buttons to the toolbar, that might be perhaps better than monkeying with the ribbon.
i have a streamdeck i use for IDE shortcuts. it’s far far better than the touchbar.
90% of what I want out of the Touch Bar is the ability to slide up/down brightness or volume. For some reason they don't implement it that way - its either a double action of tapping to open sliders then sliding, or buttons that take several taps to adjust how I like.
Maybe my use cases are crazy... I just don't get it though. Glad to see someone trying to use it for what it offers.
The action I want is a quick relative tick up or down, then listen again to see if the improvement is adequate, then repeat as necessary until it's perfect.
Sliders are good for quickly moving by a large amount to a rough absolute position. But they're utter crap for fine adjustment.
Am I the only one who gets infuriated when trying to get to the exact spot I want by rolling my finger ever so slightly to get a slider to move by half a pixel? It takes forever and it gives you RSI!
Blows my mind how an interface I can operate with my eyes closed on touch alone would ever be considered inferior to one I actually have to engage directly with with and change modes to access sliders.
So now I need to use two hands and look at the control to use it when the previous worked fine one handed on touch alone.
I think if you'd make this suggestion to audio engineers they'd throw their consoles at you
Have you actually used the slider to get used to it? It requires a significant-ish slide to increase/decrease a full dot. And by significant-ish I mean it is easy to adjust it less than one dot.
That being said I used to think the same until I got used to it, I slide more than a few dots up and down all the time. I would not want to go back to taptaptaptap.
- dock widget that shows open apps and allows me to switch quickly.
- Spotify widget that shows current track/album (with art) and controls.
- a custom date/time display that also shows the week number.
- battery level with 'time-to-full-charge' indicator.
- mute button.
But even more useful are the swipe gestures I added: two-finger swipe anywhere turns the entire bar into a volume control, and a three-finger swipe does the same for brightness.
BTT offers a ton more though.
I have a few gestures configured for the trackpad. three-finger up and down for brightness and shift + three fingers for volume if I'm too lazy to go for the touchbar. And I use a weird four-finger tapping gesture for mute and to lock my laptop ('rap' my fingers from left to right to mute, and from right to left to lock).
Then there's window sizing and, if not for Keyboard Maestro, app launching via keyboard shortcuts.
Anyways, I occasionally miss the function keys, but what the Touch Bar can do now provides enough to offset that.
But the touchbar was designed primarily for AV professionals from the beginning -- sliding controls for filmstrips, audio sliders, colors, etc.
It's just that most developers have never needed to do any work like that, and have never used the creative apps that expose this, so don't see the point.
But it's genuinely for the "professional" part of Pro. Not develop professionals, but creative professionals.
I've only recently started using a device with the TouchBar, but as a developer I've really enjoyed having debugging controls on it. It is nice being able to have the main screen focused on the running application and having the secondary debugging tools on the TouchBar.
About the only thing I’ve found useful is when plugging in a projector and getting the “mirror or extend” buttons directly rather than having to remember which symbol it is. Every other case it’s felt inferior and gotten in the way (like display/sound/volume access in an app that uses it)
You can also develop muscle memory with the Touch Bar as I've mentioned in my comment: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=23786774
Is there some kind of force feedback?
sleep 10; kill -STOP `pgrep app`
But it's still overblown though, since the same interface is available on the xxl touchpad and would be better served with a gesture (so that aiming a narrow spot is not necessary).
As a dev I would never replace regular function keys. You certainly didn't lack shortcuts for debugging without a touchbar. But I definitely see the point it being an accessibility feature (in that case though, my thought goes to something like this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Optimus_Maximus_keyboard instead)
Binding a two character keystroke (cmd-shift-c for step next for me) is vastly superior ux than a function key or touchbar provide ...
i think the location of the touchbar above the useable space in the keyboard is a huge issue with it -- it's just not a useable space. it was hard to use function keys as well for this reason.
the touchbar would be kind of interesting for the creative uses i think if it was a separate physical device that you could put where you want it. a thing with a magnet maybe that you can attach to the bottom of the keyboard beneath the touchpad ... it's there when you are in an editing mentality and wanting to use those sliders -- relax and leave your fingers down close to you rather than raised and prone and stretching ...
I've found my only real use case is using Poc and launching apps. I find the text auto correct / smilie suggestion useless and borderline distracting and annoying while I'm trying to type (too much flashing).
I fully expect it to be removed from the upcoming touchscreen ARM MBP.
Most of the rumor mill close to Apple (John Gruber, atp.fm etc) all believe it's coming.
The devices (iPad/MBP) are clearly starting to converge and I think the next MBP is going to be genetically closer to an iPad than it is todays MBP, you can tell they've been leaving a ton of enhancements out of the current lineup waiting for an evolution, MBP lags behind all other premium laptops in webcam quality, LTE, touch support, pen support and screen bezel and the ARM transition is definitely the time to push this evolutionary update.
iOS apps: but consider how Apple added (is adding? I don’t use the ecosystem) a pointer to iPadOS. That’s heading towards apps not requiring touch for interactions.
Webcam quality: I dunno, most expensive laptops I’ve seen also have lousy 720p webcams. (I have a Surface Book, which is more like a tablet in this regard, having both a front- and a rear-facing camera, both fairly decent.
LTE: not particularly common in laptops. It’s always been niche functionality.
It has always seemed weird to me how much of a schism there has been between tablets and laptops in things like cameras and LTE. (Microsoft are the ones that started tearing down the dividing wall of partition in the Surface line of products; but it’s still mostly intact.)
I’ll be interested to see what comes of it (though have no plans to ever acquire any Apple gear).
You don't need tactile feedback when the feedback is real-time in the image on the monitor or the sound in your headphones. It's audiovisual feedback in the actual creative product you're creating.
And the touch bar is definitely tall enough to handle the fattest fingers. ;) Not sure why you bring typing into it.
It's not as "real-time" as the feedback from the key itself.
There are physical keyboards without tactile feedback, but studies have shown that most people will drastically slow down when typing on one.
I'm also sad that it requires Catilina, I'm stuck on Mojave for the time being thanks to a number of 32 bit apps I depend on.
Had Apple had the good sense to introduce it without removing an entire row of keys used heavily by the developers tasked with writing software for it it might have actually worked out.
Instead, they saddled every one of their users with this thing, where it has remained at best in limbo between “occasionally useful” and “worse than the original”. I can say without a doubt that the only reason I finally broke down and bought a new laptop is because (1) they finally came to their senses with the physical Esc key, and (2) BetterTouchTool exists.
Or you know, shipping a touch screen like almost every other $2000 laptop on the market.
Every part of this UI would be better without it--physical keys to play the samples, a big touchpad to use slider controls with, the hi-def screen to see it all happen.
(It's a really neat demo)
If there was any trackpad to pull that off its the macbook trackpads.
It feels super nice on iPad and if you're running a Catalyst app or such on macOS that's designed for it, it could be cool to be able to toggle between the cursors.
Because it's an iPad.
> on macOS
That's a desktop OS with an entirely different ... well, everything. Including precision positioning of the cursor.
I can only see it as an accessibility option (in this case it might work well).
I would only want it as an option, I would in no way want it to be the only option. I just think the different cursor types could benefit different types of applications.
Alternatively Macbook already has big touchpad, add a screen like Asus ScreenPad.
There's one part that wouldn't be possible with keys since it loops the part of the sample between two fingers (41-48s).
> a big touchpad to use slider controls with
That'd be the iPad version of Samplr.
TouchBar MacBooks are much the same. If you press the Fn key, the TouchBar shows F1-F2.
Essentially an extra input for use with the thumbs. Bit shorter than the touchbar but also more focused on just extra application specific things and not all media/F-keys
Probably couldn’t get things like palm rejection right.
One example interaction is similar to the iOS keyboard: swiping along the space bar will move the cursor. Being able to type and very quickly swipe underneath the space bar to reposition the cursor could be great. And so much more useful with specific buttons or “swipe stops” to jump to opening or closing bracket when for example working on code
The point is, for me the placement of the Touch Bar always meant that only very deliberate And manual actions should be triggered through a touch on the opposite side of the keyboard. Everything that is to happen often or quickly is better served with a normal keyboard shortcut
So essentially the bar is placed in a way that prevents it from being integrated into normal, productive processes and this leaves it as an expensive and unnecessary toy (with a handful of exceptions in creative applications)
I use better touch tool and I get more use out of the touch bar than someone who doesn't use btt does, and placing the touchbar between the touchpad and keyboard makes a load more ergonomic sense, but it's also likely it would accidentally be triggered a LOT in that position.
I only want the Escape key and it’s back. I’ll trade in my 2013 MBP for an ARM laptop next year.
Edit: Music apps are somewhat privileged and play/pause can be done more globally, but it's still multiple taps, and there are other cases I would like to be able to use.
Yeah, it's an extra expense but it makes the touchbar truly useful.
Hard-wired function keys as abstraction are cognitive overhead even if mechanically efficient.
Touch Bar ignores ergonomics (screen to bar to screen) and what should be up (interface queues) is down (enemy of touch-typing). Cognitive overhead and mechanically inefficient (no muscle memory).
Not worse than QWERTY but still...
: https://pock.dev (no affiliation)
A few days in, I'm super impressed with it, and think it is able to offer subtle but effective workflow improvements within applications. (I think I'd find it frustrating if I had an older version with no hardware escape key though).
Samplr is Alonso's full featured iPad app.
From the website:
*This free app is distributed as is. No support is provided and no future updates are planned.
That said, I'm sure a talented and adventurous person could off pull using this. You define your limits =)
Very awesome idea though. Samplr for iPad is an absolutely amazing app which is both a great musical idea and great demo of using a touch-screen for innovative musical usage. I don't have a touchbar Mac, but have to agree with all the other comments here saying this is the best usage I've seen of the touch bar so far.
DiN is Noise:
This kind of application and many other uses would be so much better if it was like a part of the screen instead of the keyboard.
The current strip is out of sight all of the time so I cannot anticipate on it's changed context without taking my eyes off the screen.
So…an extension of the screen? :P
I get that a lot of folks here are engaging in what they view as "healthy design criticism," but, as a creative professional who does not have the budget for such a machine, it's hard to see most of the complaints here as anything more than privileged whining and failure to adapt to changing tools.
Laptops (and more broadly, personal computers) are designed as general purpose machines; no knowledge of the end-user is assumed. There may be a pool of activities a hardware designer may expect to take place on the machine, but designing for any one of them in particular is likely to come at a detriment to the others.
Special purpose tools exist for a reason, and perhaps such is needed in the "Programmer's Laptop" space, but criticizing a general purpose tool for not being purpose-built for a specific application is ridiculous.
Edit: because i English bad
I wish Apple would offer a version without the TouchBar.
The only progress happening here is my steady progression into madness. Why don't you just take away our keyboards entirely and give us circles and squares to push, Apple? And then we can giggle as drool runs down our faces onto our shirts. Are you happy now?!
That being said, I like what you've made here. I refuse to purposely touch my touch bar so I won't actually use it, but it looks fun.
Edit: Toned it down a touch. The touch bar is a sensitive issue for me...
On the bottom one, labeled "Press fn key to show", you can select "Show F1, F2, etc", so your function keys will always show up when you hold Fn.
Also, on the top select, I suggest you change the default setting to "Expanded Control Strip", since I find "App Controls" totally uber useless.
Sorry if my labels don't match yours exactly, I'm on pt-br and did some literal translation here.