Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Hope for aging brains

I actually saw this a while ago, but this article describes how research is now showing that older brains do not necessarily become senile and may even improve with age.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Eyeshield 21 - Anime possibly inspired by Tomlinson

As a Charger fan, I was amused to discover this anime devoted to American football. The main character is obviously inspired by Ladanian Tomlinson - no other running back I know of in the NFL matches his description:

1. Wears #21
2. Wears an eyeshield
3. Has uncanny talent for seeing running lanes around people in front of him
4. Runs freakishly fast.


Thursday, February 22, 2007

Mexico City - So much for some of my prejudice

Never having been there, I've always had this preconception of Mexico City as an overpopulated, polluted mess. Pretty much like this:

This photo collection presents other, fascinating aspects of one of the world's largest cities. Some examples:

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Humanity's Dark Side in 20 photos

WARNING: Some of these are quite disturbing

Edit note: Many of these photos are from World Press's Photo Of The Year collection

52 money hacks - one for each week!

Found this on Digg.com. This article is packed with useful advice for saving money. I've found music to be a relatively expensive hobby and I like to travel on occasion, so I could sure use it myself!

How to Eat Right without Starving Your Wallet

How to Eat Right without Starving Your Wallet

Friday, February 16, 2007

A Cello Rondo

A great multi-track cello composition and video, by Ethan Winer.

Ethan also has a great article for anyone who wants to take up the cello as an adult, drawing from his own experiences in taking up the instrument himself at the age of 43.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Life lessons from a video game

I haven't been playing video games much, due to most of my free time being occupied by music and exercise (mostly Yoga), but I've played them enough to chuckle appreciatively when I read Seven Things I Learned from World of Warcraft.

22 Ways to Reduce Eye Strain at Your Computer

I'm starting to lean more and more on Digg.com for my daily news fixes.

Those of us who use computers at work on a regular basis can always utilize the info in articles like 22 Ways to Reduce Eye Strain at Your Computer.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Advice on Salary Negotiation for Geeks


Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Some Turkish music listening recommendations

These come courtesy of Turkish musicologist Ozan Yarman, who has proposed a 79-tone tuning for the Kanun, though he was unable to recommend any recordings featuring that new tuning.

Turkish Art Music Compositions - Instrumental Works Collection

"Life is a song" Huzzam Collection

Turkish Art Music Selections, Kurdili Hijazkar Collection

Songs loved by Ataturk:

This seems to be dedicated to kanun music, but I haven't listened to it

Solo Kanun performance

Turkish Kanun music is something I am not familiar with. Despite the distorted audio quality, I was blown away by this performance. This music reminds me of both Spanish flamenco and Persian music at once.

In case you missed the Police at the Grammys

like I did, here's their rendition of Roxanne:

Friday, February 09, 2007

Book: Creative Rhythmic Concepts for Jazz Improvisation

I took a few Indian tabla lessons and have been to a workshop on doumbek drumming for belly dancers. Thus my interest in this book was piqued - it teaches rhythmic concepts for improvisation drawn from the Indian tala system, as well as other rhythmic concepts that are still not commonly used in jazz.

A sample lesson on improvising with Odd Metres, with Quicktime example, can be found here.

Mac OSX Defragmentation

The official word from Apple is that defragmentation of hard drives under Mac OSX should not be necessary. It seems that the main reason Apple doesn't want users using 3rd-party defragmentation software is most of the software choices are not "Hot-File aware" (Hot-File Adaptive Clustering is mentioned in Apple's article).

In spite of this, a number of people in the Mac DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) community use iDeFrag to defragment their hard drives. I guess sometimes you just have to clear some space right that moment and don't want to wait for OSX to try to do it for you. Hot-File awareness is a selling point of iDeFrag.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Switched to Blogger 2.0, got some glitches

The most serious glitch from switching to the new version of Blogger is the loss of all the links that i had on the right side. I'll gradually rebuild the Links section. Apologies to anyone who was accessing other blogs and sites through this one.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Lecture on Microtones in Arabic Music

24-tone Equal Temperament divides the intervals of Western-standard 12-tone Equal Temperament, so that there are 24 equal divisions to the octave instead of 12. The notes between the notes of the 12-tone Equal Temperament scale (aka "Chromatic Scale") are thus referred to as quarter-tones.

This excellent lecture by Sami Abu Shumays explains the problem of trying to shoehorn Arabic maqam into strict 24-tone Equal Temperament, as part of a general introduction into the use of microtones in Arabic Music.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

YouTube - Jazz guitar - walking bass lesson

I've actually gone even further down the road to a back-to-basics approach in my guitar musicianship education, by getting and starting to work with A Modern Method For Guitar , the first volume of which recently became available in a book/DVD-ROM package.

But for those readers who are ready to take on the challenge, check out the above lesson on how to put together walking bass lines and chords.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Nice Ney Impression on Synth

I've been fascinated by the sound of the Ney for a while. High-level Ney players can vary their tone dramatically by manipulating their tongues. Check out this nice synth emulation of a Ney, using a keyboard and breath controller.