The Esstu Pack



MIDI music has always interested me, partly because I like music (playing it as well as listening to it), and partly because the MIDI file format is simple and well thought out. Not having a MIDI-capable electronic keyboard, I found the computer's keyboard the best and simplest technique for entering the data.

To facilitate the entering of tunes from sheet music (my favorite technique, as the information is all there), I wrote this program to translate files from a simple line based format called BEP (three-letterism of BEEP, the name of the program which played the tunes) into a standard MIDI file. As an added feature, after compiling the MID, BEP2MID will optionally call on PLAY.CMD (which comes with OS/2 Warp 4 Multimedia) to test the MIDI file. (If you don't have PLAY.CMD in the PATH, or if for some other reason it fails, don't worry - the MID has been created regardless.)

If multiple input files are specified, all are compiled into the single MIDI file, as separate chunks, specified to play simultaneously. The result is that (for example) several lines of music can be entered (the separate parts perhaps), and then the tune can be played as a cohesive whole.

The use of scripts instead of complex command strings is highly convenient in the OS/2 Workplace Shell (and may or may not be so in other environments). Simply associate Bep2Mid with the script file (ensuring that the @ prefix is applied, to mark the parameter as a script file), configure the script once, and then every time you want to rebuild the MIDI, just double-click the script.

For people who want examples (such as me <g>), I have provided several of my favorite tunes in a ZIP (MIDS.ZIP). To extract them correctly, extract them using a program which restores the directory structure (PKUNZIP will do this if you use the -d option). Each one has a set of .BEP files (the input), a script file, and an output .MID in case (for some reason) you can't compile.

Requires: REXX
Installation: None.
Operation: Run with arguments (see opening comment).
De-installation: Delete.
Distribution: Donationware.