Prop Phone

6 04 2013

Prop Phone

Need to make a cell phone ring on stage here is the app you need


What I’ve been up to.

4 01 2013

Its been a while since I have posted so its time to tell you why. I am still writing, but now I have been writing a monthly article for Stage Directions Magazine called TD Talk. I write about general theatre tech and yes how the digital world can be used in the performing arts. I also combined a couple blog posts for an article for TD&T all my article links can be found at I have been spending a lot of time on apps research and I have compiled a new list of apps at

Have a safe and happy new year and thanks for all the support for my blog

Todd Proffitt (tm204)


Lightwright Touch update is available

19 04 2011

I recently purchased Lightwright touch for the iPad and found today in the App Store that the new update is available. It’s a version 1.1.2 and fixes several bugs and addresses the issue of importing a new file into  Lightwright touch.  I just got this app am currently doing my first show with it. After the show closes I’ll post a full review. So far it’s pretty amazing, the ability to sync between my iPad, desktop and the light plot is seamless. There has been a glitch or 2 Along the Way but overall I’m extremely satisfied with the program and see it  reducing the amount of time I spend updating paperwork.


11 02 2011

Here is a quick video showing off Screencast-O-Matic. A great new service that takes a video of whats on your screen. You can get a 15 minute video for free and 1hr for just $9 a year. They can be found at

A special thanks to Rob Sayer (@onstagelighting on twitter) for turning me on to this product check out his Screencast-O-Matic Vectorworks tutorials here.

Apps for Stage Design: Wybron’s Swatchbook for the iPad

20 09 2010

This past summer Wybron released an iPad version of their popular iPhone swatchbook app “Gel Swatch Library” (or iSwatch for short), appropriately named “Gel Swatch Library HD” or “Swatch” on the icon. My first thought was, would it cost more?  Apps “upsized” for the iPad often do.  Thankfully, they retained the $9.99 price tag, but it is important to note that it is not a universal app so if you have both an iPad and an iPhone or an iTouch, you might purchase both. If you are wondering why you would want both, here is a brief rundown of why one user finds value in the pair of apps.

Both programs have the transmission, CMY, RGB and SED curve (Spectral Energy Distribution) for each gel from Apollo, Gam, Lee, and Rosco.  Both programs also show similar colors and complementary colors to a chosen color, can compare two gels side by side, have a list of recently viewed colors, and employ a search feature.  On the iPhone or iTouch this is all valuable information in a quick-access-ultra-portable mode, so why bother with two versions?

First, the “iSwatch” app on the iPad is small, so it will either be literally the size of the phone screen centered in the middle of the iPad screen, or it can be magnified to fill the screen, which makes the fonts a little pixellated. Not bad for functionality, but not great for eyes. Second, “Swatch” makes great use of the screen real estate, allowing the list of gels and the similar/complementary colors to be viewed all at once in landscape mode.

Swatch screenshot

Selecting the icon that looks like a ‘winding road ahead’ sign takes you to the full screen blowup of the SED curves. (Tapping on the mini version yields the same result).In this larger view, selecting any point along the color distribution curve gives you more detail about that particular point.

There is also an “eyedropper” tool, which enables the user to select what visually looks interesting and then see the RGB in both percentage and DMX value (switch between them by tapping on it) as well as Hex and HSL. The tool also finds the closest gels to the color selected.

The biggest and most notably different feature in “Swatch” is the “projects” feature.  Unfortunately the Wybron website offers little instruction on how to begin a project.  Happily, it is written for the same intuitive nature as the iOS, so merely holding down a color for a few seconds pops up a menu that asks which project the user wants to assign it to, if they have a project already started.

Starting a project is easy; the folder icon at the bottom opens the projects list. Select “edit” then “+” to add a new project and give it a name.  If you have multiple projects they can be easily re-ordered by being selected on the far right where the triple linesare and dragging it up or down. Choosing the blue dot will allow you to change a project’s name, or add general notes to it.  The red dot will delete a project (as will swiping over it to the right when in the previous screen). Select “done” and then “list” to go back to selecting gels.

The “projects” folder is where users will view their lists of gels. Here gels can be re-ordered and deleted in the same fashion as when editing the list of project names, and notes can be added to a particular color.  And when finished with, the list can be emailed; it will send the color and note information, as well as a small representative color swatch.

Both apps are well laid out and have been thoroughly thought through for the strengths of each device.  Recommendation: buy it!

VectorWorks 2011 sneak peak

9 09 2010

New apps

3 07 2010

So is spent some time in the app store last night and cam across some new apps that are worth mentioning.

White Light Reference Guide is a FREE app for a production company in the UK with lots of great info. The have there standard marketing materials, like news, portfolio, contacts and history. But they also have a gel conversion chart and some basic weights of equipment.  The gel chart is text only and the weights are in Kg, but for FREE its a must have reference app.

DMX Switch by Sound Source Pro Audio and Lighting.  I can’t believe someone actually made a DMX switch app this has to be the best and most original idea on the internet. (insert sarcasm sign here). Yes there are a ton of these in the app store and all is does is give you the address for your dmx switch settings. The good news is it is free, the bad news I can’t tell you how well it works it crashes on my 2nd generation ipod touch. Oops just went to there support site and its blank.

iTruss is a 4.99 app that according to the manufacturer “Determine load, span or truss needed for your job in the field with this exciting new iPhone® application from XSF.”  I have not downloaded it yet to give it a test run.