Wednesday, December 30, 2009

fresh beats

Check out this guy who makes his own synthesizers and puts them in tupperware containers

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Blipfest Day... 4?: Facundo tore my clothes off and made me dance

I woke up on the couch at my hostel with my friend from breakfast the day before. I checked out, ventured into the snow of the city. Really interesting from my perspective watching everyone dig themselves out. I walked through a frosty Central Park (I was warm enough to take off my jacket) and spent a couple hours trudging through the snow. It was a different place than the day before. Very beautifull. lots of families. more relaxed than I had been in weeks or months. I had a falafel and moroccan tea - another of many firsts - and caught the train to Pianos for more chiptunes. Facundo, who I think booked everyone, picked some great artists. He also forced a margarita straw in my mouth (that's what she said) and it all went down from there! I wound up getting my own, a whiskey and a scotch before the night was done.
I ran into Glomag there who offered me a floor which allowed me to stay for the after-after party in Brooklyn. He led a group of us there on the train and there we were. I met one of the last players at Pianos, C-Trix and, as it turns out, he's hi-fi audio geek like me. We talked about turntables and production techniques with his computers- very cool. Highlights of the night were a 7-person Billy Joel cover chiptune chorus and Animaniguchi. Next morning, a co-couchsurfer treated me to coffee and donuts as I was headed home. In a small twist of fate, I once again ran into SKGB on the Chinatown bus, so I had some company for a few hours before I went home.



Sunday, December 20, 2009

Blipfest Day 3: I survived the pit at Bitshifter's set

I tend not to use the word "epic" when describing things that are awesome. It is a word often overused for things that are not that exciting. This trip was EPIC. I got to see a bunch of demoscene-based videos, followed by a intro-to-hacker-video-art lecture by mah friend, No Carrier. Links to follow. This was the weekend in a nutshell:

BLIP FESTIVAL 2009 from 2 Player Productions on Vimeo.

SUCH a great show. even though I missed the first day and a half I had a blast. I lucked out with my hostel and had a great experience (although I hardly used my bed for sleeping, more for storage). Once the night got started, nYc had a blizzard, we must have had at LEAST 6 inches of snow. Got myself an LSDJ cartridge so I can start writing for Game Boy and I got to talk to the guy who solders all the cartridges; Jeremy's a swell human being. I nerded out with DeadBeatBlast about the software he uses to write music, crowd surfed with SKGB, watched No Carrier go to town on visuals and just rocked out, despite a bum leg (which really hurts today...totally worth it.)

The Blip Festival pit was more intense than any punk or metal pit I've been in. just incredible.

At the end of the night, I skipped the afterparty and got on the wrong train. So I wound up getting breakfast at, I'm guessing 3 am, at some restaurant on 32 street and watched the snow fall. Then I walked to Penn Station and I was back on track. Even though it was cold, it wasn't that windy and I was well insulated. So I had a comfortable walk to the hostel. One long hot shower later, I fell asleep.

I would, at this time, like to share a Concert Vet's Survival Guide to traveling to shows and loving the cold:
-drink water before hand with a nutritious meal

-bring extra clothes that will fit under the first pair

-when you get to the venue, roll everything up into "logs" and stuff the sleeves of your jacket with them.

-make friends with the soundboard or lighting guy and politely ask to stow your jacket. or keep it in the side of the room where you can monitor it periodically

-keep cool and hydrated! after each set or intermission, be near a bathroom so you can get to the sink. use water to cool off your face, neck, and anywhere else that a lot of blood flows.

-dry off as much as possible. going outside sweaty will GET YOU SICK. I've learned the hard way but I'm fine this morning. also this will remove the heat stored in your sweat and keep you cool and less gross.

-if you have to, stop dancing a half hour early so you can change and get dry. If you're wearing long pants, grab the cuff and pull them upwards and over themselves to make shorts. This will cool you off faster.

-Change and get out of those wet clothes. get your hair dry. make sure you know where you're going. you'll be tired and probably won't want to take the scenic routes

-traveling in populated, well-lit areas will keep you safer. If you get a little lost don't panic. always keep your gameface: look intent on a destination, backtrack, keep confident. don't be vulnerable.

thank you everyone. This was the best winter Break Kickoff anyone could ask for


Saturday, December 19, 2009

Blipfest Day 2: my health club promotes stagediving

Woke up> set up my final> presented my final> RUN home and pack bags> rt 23 SEPTA bus>Chinatownbus>NYC F train> NYC 2 train> hostel> NYC 2 train> NYC R train> BLIPFEST!

The first night was incredible. I rolled in around 10 pm after more public trans than I could imagine. Just in time to see little-scale. I ran into a couple familiar faces and got crazy meeting some new ones. got props for my Legend of Zelda shirt and had a ball. Covox's set was probably the wildest pit I've ever been in. The people here are so nice and, when they're not incredibly busy, will sit down with you and shoot the shit. It's great. didn't get back to the hostel until 4am. I woke up and had breakfast with a stranger and had a strange but cool conversation about how the first of our four dimensions of reality is our thought. I gotta run so I can see no-carrier's hacking demo.



Friday, December 18, 2009

Adventure in the Big Apple

It's 3:09 AM and WHY AREN'T YOU IN BED YOUNG MAN?! Well, I'm making shark soup after a long day of travel. At noon I got on the Chinatown bus to New York for a last attempt to get my final to operate with Professor Jessica Feldman, who I recently nominated for sainthood. We spent several long hours in a coffee shop working in a program called Jitter to get things operating. Unfortunately, not everything went according to plan. I had to make compromises with software limitations AND I missed the first day of Blipfest which was a HUGE bummer.

So 3 transportation systems and what, 16 hours later? I'm writing, praying for a Hanukkah Miracle that everything actually works when I plug it into the hardware for crit.



Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Fools for a hearty...

SO much has happened since the last blog entry. I had been meeting with Jess Feldman, a professor for sound art, who had experience with programming. We had several meetings, through the course of which we decided to use this program she had for a peice of hers done a year or two prior. She even had a file that had a bunch of framework for stuff I needed to do. We figured it would be best to use her program, called Jitter, rather than try to reinvent the wheel in Processing.

Fast forward a few weeks later. I'm sitting with my back, litterally against the wall. I have no projector, no camera, and no finished program. I've spent the last couple days trying to figure out Jitter, and while it is more artist-friendly, it is, yet another programming language I have to figure out. So far, no success. but either way, I'm going to Blipfest, three days of chiptune music. y'all should come! I will update if I make any progress on Jitter, which I sincerely hope I can.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A series of failures

So I bombed the open mic. The sound system sounded way different and distorted (unmonitored) from my perspective. so I fumbled through my 3 minutes. Next time: splitter from computer output; one output to soundboard, the other to noise-canceling headphones.

Talked to Wil, who's been a guide in Processing. More or less in his words, " you want it done by the end of the semester?! That's not gonna happen." So I've got to figure out something for the final.

Trash80 and AnimalStyle killed it so at least that was a consolation.

Trying to help Angelo Vermeulen as best I can but the systems are fighting us! I share his frustrations. I'm going to try to get help from Soundteacher Jess about my programming woes.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


... where it cost more than 47 large to feed 6 people

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A swarm of birds

So this is the result of thousands of birds flying in a close space. What does it have to do with computerlogik? Well, amigo, besides having experienced something like this on a far smaller scale, I find it very interesting that computer programs can render imagery similar to this using math functions and code.

It also had me thinking about the multi-thousand-strong unwitting collaboration of these birds doing normal bird things and how our perception of the event transforms it into something magic. What is our impact on the digital world? Do our little deletions and tiny programs go forgotten when they are released or do the band together? What would they look like and how would they respond to us, their rejecting creators, if they made contact? It sounds like something out of Ghost in the Shell, but it is a serious pondering. If a dog can find it's way home over a long distance and trash groups together into massive islands in the ocean, who's to say our data, our artificial intelligence is incapable of the same?

also I like listening to The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonight while watching this

Friday, November 13, 2009

I've emailed some fellow geeks who might be able to help me or get me the help that I need. Also tried to contact the college of engineering, thus far with no replies. Looked into Jitter and supercollider, but I don't have the time to learn the language. I'm getting desperate to realize this ^&*(ing thing but I have nowhere left to go so I'm pretty nervous

A flow chart for the piece is as follows:
-there is to be a projector stationed at the wall opposite the room entrance, projecting a white background except for a computer-rendered animated drawing of a bug (I'm writing the code for it currently). there will be no other light source
-the bug will scurry around the white background until the second part of the program is triggered.
-there will be white object near the middle of the room with small text on it. I haven't decided what the text is yet, but the purpose of the object is to make the viewer stop walking in the space, which triggers the second program.
-a video camera is processing motion in the gallery. when the camera input detects that motion has stopped in the gallery space by tracking the contrast of shadows in the space, the bug will run offscreen and the projector will expand the shadow until the projection is blank.
-the gallery will remain blank for five minutes, at which point the program will reset.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Don't Forget it Starts on Page 556, Stupid!

Getting down with motion detection in processing right now. details to follow on that.
Also trying to bang out the programming for a song: another open mic is on Saturday.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

shortcuts shrtcts stcs s

I've read and experimented most of the way through a chapter that interfaces computer keyboard input to modify visual output. There are several code lines in this segment when, if you hover over a space, the visual affect gets more pronounced over time (like hovering over a box makes the box darker as it adds layers of transparent gray). Sounds boring but it could be used to expand a shadow for a piece I'm planning. also flipped ahead and found the chapter on audio/video input. Someone is borrowing the Big Blue Book from me tonight, but my ideas are starting to come together and seem more plausible.


Saturday, October 31, 2009


JUST FINISHED a chapter on using mouse as a control for visual output. hopefully, it will soon go onto visual input AND visual output affecting each other.

Friday, October 30, 2009

so wait, you want bugs IN your program?

working with animation here!
What the code describes is an oval with six legs.
I want to make the legs move up and down first.
eventually, I want to make the bug move and shake while the legs "walk", but that's later.
after the code is a link to another help me thread. once I get something working at a satisfactory level, i'll post a video.

void setup(){
size (400, 400);
strokeWeight (1);
void draw(){
ellipse (100, 100, 50, 100);
legl(40, 90, 90);
legl(42, 110, 110);
legl(50, 130, 130);
legr(125, 100, 100);
legr(123, 120, 120);
legr(115, 140, 140);
frameRate (30);
void legl (int a, int b, int c) {
vertex (a+35, b + 10);
vertex (a+20, b);
vertex (a, c + 30);
void legr (int d, int e, int f) {
vertex (d, e);
vertex (d+15, e - 10);
vertex (d+35, f + 20);


Friday, October 23, 2009

this dense syntax for animation is really getting me down. I've been trying for days to make a circle expand within another circle and i have unfortunately made no progress.
I have had very little success trying to consult people and the Big Blue Book can only explain so well. I'm getting desperate in making at least ONE of my damn goals I outlined but it's getting nowhere and making me upset each time i sit down to work on it.
I am now posting in processing's boards, which I should have done last to follow



Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Uh Dissident Sediment

So, today I got to work with a grad student who wanted to get into processing, so we looked into some animation chapters together in the Big Blue Book. He knew a lot more about coding than I, as he had a background in flash. So now I have someone who might be able to help me debug some of my programs.


Monday, October 19, 2009

Pepto Dismal


After a meeting with my instructor, Rob, it's time I start establishing goals for each week, cause goin through the book is taking forever.

For the coming weeks, I would like to:

-Make Something move (animations)
-Respond to external input (run an interactive program)
-Successfully interface physical into digital worlds (responds to input from me-made hardware)
-Gain deeper understand of mathematically-generated actions in programs

I'd like to knock out two a week but at least one.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

With a smile like this guy...

Last night's open mic was a success. I programmed music onto a Commodore 64 emulator (in itself a huge task) and played bass alongside. I had a lot of people tell me they liked it, which is great. I will try to record an album hopefully over break.

"So you used a computer" you ask. "what's that got to do with this blog?"

Well, sir, along with audio performances, there were some guys in the back projecting video pieces to go with the music. I saw them use old NES systems, something I think called a PMP, Commodore 64, and I think an Amiga 800. very cool.

Having a little background in Processing now, I spent some time in the back and tried to figure out how they organized the programs in terms of code. I dont have any video examples right now, but it was very cool to see them work. An interesting thing they did was for live performances (as far as I could figure) they would code and program image and pattern, then dedicate them to shortcut keys on a keyboard. They then blend it together with a video mixer which looks like a box with buttons, a joystick and sliders.

video update on my personal progress was help up yesterday. I have the update, it's just a matter of dumping it onto the youtube and blog.


Thursday, October 8, 2009

I'll add my update tomorrow afternoon. But for now, check this show out. 8-bit artists at the klein (sic?) gallery at 36th and market until november. also, I'll be doing an open mic on saturday night. first time I play my chiptunes live.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Despite the internet's best efforts, I have managed to upload Friday's video. apologies for the delays.


Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Slough of Expletives

I just found out that cancelled my order of the Big Blue Processing Bible.

So if you want to buy a book, fellas, don't buy through

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Fiddlesticks and PoppyCOCK!

So after limping away from yesterday's update, I sent a message to VBLANK who got me started in Processing. Dissatisfied with the online tutorial, I needed a better guide.

so besides a pretty picture, today's image is the cover of the book I just ordered. He "HIGHLY recommend"ed it as a resource so I HASTILY went for expedited shipping.

Candy: here's a link to a granular synthesizer

a what?

a granular synthesizer! simply put, it samples a bit of sound and lets you break it down into smaller pieces or "granules" like grains of sound. you can process the sound in big bits, small, and...well... just play the darn thing!

Friday, September 25, 2009

shitty update

This update is pretty weak. I've been having problems with Dreamweaver and uploading for a while, but I've found an alternative! should let me host processing stuff because it's specifically designed to do that.
I WANTED to have an animation by the end of this week. Didn't happen. but I can show you a self Portrait. below is the code. I'll present the finished piece in class
No more BS after today
size (280, 350);
fill (254, 255, 67);
rect (100, 50, 80, 80); //hair
fill (255, 245, 219);
rect (115, 70, 50, 60); //head
rect (80, 130, 20, 20); //L arm
rect (60, 70, 20, 60); //L arm
rect (180, 150, 20, 60); //R arm
rect (150, 265, 20, 40); //R leg
rect (110, 265, 20, 40); //L leg
fill (0, 0, 0);
rect (125, 90, 10, 10); //L eye
rect (145, 90, 10, 10); //R eye
line (125, 80, 135, 80); //L brow
line (145, 80, 155, 80); //R brow
fill (2, 152, 3);
rect (80, 130, 20, 20); //L arm
rect (180, 130, 20, 20); //R arm
rect (100, 130, 80, 90); //body
fill (20, 23, 67);
rect (100, 210, 35, 55); //L pant
rect (145, 210, 35, 55); //R pant
rect (100, 210, 80, 25); //pants
fill (103, 44, 5);
rect (105, 305, 30, 10); //L shoe
rect (145, 305, 30, 10); //R shoe

Friday, September 18, 2009


After some pains and a crash in dreamweaver, I am able to post examples of work in Processing.
unfortunately, I don't know how to embed into the blog yet, so this link is sufficient for now

tracks mouse movement
clicking resets the window

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

This is a Test

Tonight's goal is to successfully post examples of the following files on here:
Any song file

With any luck, I do some damage.

UPDATE: How the hell do you use java?!
As incentive to keep you here, I'm also posting goodies. Stuff that you can try when I find out about it or if I remember.

Today, the phrase that pays is "visualizing sound".
First up is a lecture from Kevin Grant about making sound visible. very cool

Next up is a cool little program called Photosounder. You can use it to translate image into sound (or vice versa).
it's been done before (by Venetian Snares, Aphex Twin, Nine Inch Nails, and others) but it's still cool. freeware, of course.

courtesy of Matrixsynth.

First Post

Welcome to the page. I'm running with what I started this summer. I started investigating "old technology" seriously to start writing music. So what I know right now is a complicated program called Goattracker, which can play the Commodore 64's SID synthesizer chip (if you know what you're doing). Right now I only have saved song files of the emulator.

Onto this page itself. I want to incorporate computer programming into my work, so I will start with a program called "Processing" and run with it and see where it takes me. Processing can create images, animation, interactive games, and other cool programs. Hopefully I can show something cool every week and show some stuff I've found that interests me.

If you're still here after that long-winded writing, stick around.