Archive for 'music'

Change is Possible

Posted on May 23, 2006, under general, meta, music, photography.

If you’re ever in Dundrum’s massive shopping centre, pay close attention as you pay for your parking (if you happen to have driven there). It doesn’t tell you that change is available, but rather the far more optimistic message, that change is possible.

It’s nice to see, it brought a smile ot my face, and clearly it’s intentional. Maybe it’s part of a car parks against conservatism movement, or maybe it’s religious subliminal messaging, or maybe just a fun meme to lighten the day but whatever it is, it’s good fun.

Papal Cross in Phoenix Park

So, Nóirín helped me change this blog – to WordPress 2 – which is going very well so far. I’ve made it easier to post comments too, which was always a bit too hard for my liking (but I like comment spam even less).

On another note of change; on my travels I got a new Camera, which I’m having some fun with. My shots from San Francisco were taken with it, along with the two shots in this post (The papal cross in the Phoenix Park, and our good friend Conall O’Brien).

Conall O'Brien

And yet again in the spirit of change, I went on my first successful geocaching expedition on Saturday, and it was great fun, I’d highly recommend to anyone. As it was my birthday over the weekend, we went to see two great Gigs in Airfield House. The first was Kevin Burke and Ged Foley and the second was Liz Carroll and John Doyle. Both were excellent, it was great to hear some master fiddlers playing and John Doyle’s guitar playing is truly amazing.

And I think the last note of change, is that yesterday, I finally got IP connectivity into the datacentre we’ve been building for the last few months, which means we are now officially in the migration phase. I might even have free time soon!

Piano Chords OS X widget

Posted on April 2, 2006, under general, music.

A long long time ago, when Netscape 2 was cutting edge, before AJAX, before IE won the browser wars and while many people still called Javascript “livescript”, I wrote a ridiculously complex Javascript implementation of a piano tutor, called “Virtual Piano Chords”. For something that I last touched in 1998, it’s kind of amazing that it still works in any browser I try these days. A google search for Virtual Piano Chords shows a load of websites still using it, one of the more faithful examples is here.

The code isn’t great (it would have been a lot better if switch statements and enums had of worked), but the music theory is pretty solid, and since I was studying music theory at the time, it was a great help for exploring new chords, enharmonics, scales and (my favourite) modes. And now, 8 years later, Alexander Griekspoor has created an OS X widget based on the work. Cool!

The PianoChord widget, true to OS X form, looks great and it’s got all of the Chord shapes. From experience these apps can be very useful for exploring inversions and trying to put a slightly different spin on an accompaniment or harmony piece.