MA Recordings; Wonderful music but frustrating

 

Here’s a new audio blog! It’s been a long time I know… This one is mostly about some new music for me. MA Recordings continues to amaze and frustrate me. The music is amazing but their insistence on publishing to CD only is making me a bit crazy.

Begoña Olavide has a variety of things available on iTunes and Bandcamp, including an album named “Mudejar” but it doesn’t sound like the same recording. I managed to find a track from album Calamus on YouTube. I think this is the best album to get if you’re new to this kind of music.

That’s medieval Spanish music with Arabic, gypsy, and even Sephardic influences in it. I love it completely.

Vlatko Stefanovski and Miroslav Tadic are a guitar duo with a unique sound. There are all sorts of influences in there from Eastern Europe, Spain, and even American blues. Here is a live performance of one of the songs on the album.

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Life as I see it episode #15. Sometimes the theory doesn’t work

 

Why in the world did systems with single ended tube amps sound good? By all rights they should sound terrible. Anything with that much distortion should only have made things sound worse. And yet, opinions are sharply divided. Why? Turns out there is a reasonable, if complicated possible explanation. This is a geeky story but I think it has some potential lessons outside the audio world… I actually recorded this a week ago but am just now publishing it. Gotta stay up to date!

 

 

Here’s the article on how second harmonic distortion could potentially be beneficial.

 

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Life as I see it podcast #14 Thinking of my grandmother

 

Random, silly things make me think of my maternal grandmother:) Tetris, gooey things, and upholstery…

 

You can see all of my podcasts at bli.ms/u/eyes. You can subscribe using the RSS feed bli.ms/u/eyes/rss

 

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Life as I see it podcast #12 Bitcoin part 3

 

This is the third installment of podcasts about bitcoin. It’s the last one I have planned but I reserve the option to make more if things get interesting. The Bitcoin protocol is actually pretty flexible. If it proves to not be flexible enough it is easy to fork the code base and make your own Bitcoin based system. Here are some of the articles and stories I referenced in the podcast.

 

Twister is a peer to peer, decentralized social network based on the Bitcoin protocol. Still in alpha, download it at your own risk!

Danny Bradbury writes about Colored coins. Colored coins pain sophisticated future for bitcoin. 

Bitcoin: How its core technology will change the world by Jacob Aron. 

A video introduction to Ethereum. Also a good, quick inter to the uses of the Bitcoin protocol. That page also has lots of info graphics and explanations, recommended.

Bitcoin is not just digital currency. It’s Napster for finance by David Morris for can.com. Not a fan of the comparison to Napster but a good article.

 

You can see all of my podcasts at bli.ms/u/eyes. You can subscribe using the RSS feed bli.ms/u/eyes/rss

 

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Life as I see it podcast episode #11 Bitcoin pt.2

 

This is my second podcast about Bitcoin. In it, I mention some links where you can read about some of the potential problems with bitcoins and then talk at length about some of the other potential uses of the protocol. Notice how I keep using the word potential? The links for the pitfalls are rather technical from an economics point of view, I don’t think there is any real discussion of the cryptology or network configuration. Ran across a great article in the NYT. Do read it, I found a lot to be interested in it.

 

How and Why Bitcoin will Plummet in Price by Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution

The Marginal Cost of Cryptcurrency by Robert Sams at cryptonomics.org

A list of 83 different cryptocurrencies

Why Bitcoin Matters from the New York Times by Marc Andressen

 

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Life as I See it podcast episode #10 Can Video Games be Art?

 

Can video games be art? Roger Ebert had declared that they couldn’t a fair number of years ago. Jeff Vogel weighed in on this topic and that lead to some discussion in my app.net stream about it. I think the answer to the question revolves around the relationship of the creator to an artwork in relation to the consumer of the artwork. In some ways, artists are unable to experience their own art because they have a very different motivation and experience. I think that playing a game, video or not, is much more akin to participating in the creation of art than it is to be the audience for it. 

 

Ebert on games not being art. He seems to rely mostly on the merits of games instead of making any sort of philosophical argument.

Jeff Vogel on video games and art. If you like old school role playing games make sure to check out his company Spiderweb Software.

Kelle Santiago’s TED talk about how video games are art. Gotta say I’m with Roger Ebert on this, I don’t find her argument compelling.

 

You can see all of my podcasts at bli.ms/u/eyes. You can subscribe using the RSS feed bli.ms/u/eyes/rss

 

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Welcome to Night Vale

 

The Idea Channel on YouTube is always interesting but I think its real value to me is how it exposes me to things that I wouldn’t know about otherwise. It was the first to clue me into Adventure Time (I still need to watch some more before coming to a conclusion about that). Tonight I learned about Welcome to Night Vale, an apparently very popular podcast about casual horror and weirdness. It consists of a local radio news show reporting on events in the town. That wouldn’t be so interesting but Night Vale is one weird place. “A friendly desert community where the sun is hot, the moon is beautiful, and mysterious lights cross the sky as we pretend to sleep. Welcome to Night Vale.” A typical PSA on the radio would be something like this… “The city council announces a new dog park at the corner of Earl and Summorset. They would like to remind everyone that dogs are not allowed in the dog park, people are not allowed in the dog park. It is possible that you will see hooded figures in the dog park, do not approach them. DO NOT APPROACH THE DOG PARK. The fence is electrified and highly dangerous. Try not to look at the dog park and especially do not look for any period of time at the hooded creatures. The dog park will not harm you.” I also liked the reminder that, “It’s election time again! We all know what that means, you will receive paperwork designating which family members will be held to insure you vote correctly…”

 

It’s a dystopian, Lovecraft inspired Monty Pythonesque dose of the absurd with a dash of Buffy humor thrown in for good measure. It’s a free podcast and comes out twice a month, I recommend it highly.