Archive for the Uncategorized Category

Eigenharp

Posted in Uncategorized on January 1, 2010 by lindahurd

The Eigenharp is a ridiculously expensive, interesting new instrument developed by Eigenlabs in Devon, UK. There is the Alpha, which costs £3,950 and the Pico, priced at £349.

From BoingBoing.net:

The Eigenharp, a crazy, science fiction instrument from Eigenlabs, comes on two forms, the “Alpha” (“Our professional level instrument allows the musician to play and improvise using a limitless range of sounds with virtuoso skill. It has 120 playing keys, 12 percussion keys, two strip controllers and a breath pipe. Available in a variety of custom finishes.”) and the “Pico” (“It’s ideal as a solo instrument or for playing in a band. With 18 playing keys and 4 mode keys, a strip controller and breath pipe, the smaller Pico has the majority of the playing features of the Eigenharp Alpha. It plays an unlimited range of sounds and is available in two finishes.”). Check out the stunning performance of the Bond theme.

Eigenharp Alpha

It’s a cool instrument, but is it really >$6000 cool?

Musicovery

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on December 4, 2009 by lindahurd

Yesterday  I was programming for about 24 hours straight in the UT business school’s computer lab when I realized I had forgotten to charge my iPod.  Then I realized that I couldn’t use Pandora in the computer lab.  I was really disappointed until I remembered Musicovery.  I used it a few times a couple of years ago, but not much since then.  Last night I became fairly familiar with it as I programmed into the wee hours of the morning

Everyone’s heard of Pandora, but what about Musicovery?  Musicovery defines itself as “interactive webRadio.”  It allows you to listen to a music channel based on your mood, specified genre(s), and a specified time period.  You pick something in between four different moods: Energetic, calm, positive, and dark.  Then you pick a genre and a time period.  I find it a little difficult to find a balance that includes songs and artists that I like.  But once I find that sweet spot, it’s really cool.

I also find the genres to be a bit off sometimes.  For example, I selected “folk” and chose 2000s as the time period, and Musicovery pulled up some music that I wouldn’t really consider folk.  While I was expecting to hear music similar to artists such as Jose Gonzalez, it instead played songs from artists like John Mayer.   I guess I can see how some of John Mayer’s music could be categorized as folk, but it specifically had “Your Body is a Wonderland” in the Folk genre.  I always thought John Mayer was classified as Pop music.

The coolest feature is the “Discovery” button.  It plays music from lesser known artists, and I like to use Musicovery as a tool for finding new music that I might like.  Overall, Musicovery is a great free music listening service.  You can pay a premium for more features, but lets hope that the basic features remain free of charge.


http://musicovery.com

Last.fm Interview

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on December 1, 2009 by lindahurd

Here is an interesting interview with Last.fm on Cnet UK.

I use last.fm, but I’m not entirely aware of all of the features they offer.  I have my iTunes hooked up to “scrobble” my music plays, and I sometimes log on to see the data that last.fm has collected about my music listening habits.  What’s really amazing is the amount of data that is going through Last.fm.  Apparently 2750,000 years of music have been scrobbled on Last.fm. That’s pretty amazing.

From the interview:
How much data passes through Last.fm?
“One number that’s pretty cool is relevant to our recent Xbox launch. In our first week of use, 120 million minutes of music were streamed.

“One thing that’s even more popular than our radio-streaming service is scrobbling — the process of sending the name of the track you’re listening to to Last.fm’s servers. You can scrobble from over 200 different online music services and desktop clients, such as iTunes, Winamp, Hype Machine, etc.

“During peak hours, we get more than 800 scrobbles per second which translates to about 43 million scrobbles per day. Since 2003, which is when we invented scrobbling, we’ve broken 35 billion scrobbles. That translates to about 275,000 years of  scrobbled music.”

RiP: A Remix Manifesto

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on November 28, 2009 by lindahurd

If you’re at all interested in remixing, mashups, copyright, RiP: A Remix Manifesto is a must-see film.  It follows mashup artist Girltalk and goes in depth about the mashup culture.

From ripremix.com:

“Immerse yourself in the energetic, innovative and potentially illegal world of mash-up media with RiP: A remix manifesto. Let web activist Brett Gaylor and musician Greg Gillis, better known as Girl Talk, serve as your digital tour guides on a probing investigation into how culture builds upon culture in the information age.

Biomedical engineer turned live-performance sensation Girl Talk, has received immense commercial and critical success for his mind-blowing sample-based music. Utilizing technical expertise and a ferocious creative streak, Girl Talk repositions popular music to create a wild and edgy dialogue between artists from all genres and eras. But are his practices legal? Do his methods of frenetic appropriation embrace collaboration in its purest sense? Or are they infractions of creative integrity and violations of copyright?

You be the judge by watching RiP: A remix manifesto.”

You can watch it for free at Hulu.com or download it here and pay what you want for it.

The coolest thing about this film is that you can contribute to it, remix it, etc.  For example, they had a times square clip on their website that they got people to remix, and then used it in the film.

Electronic Rock Guitar Shirt

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on November 23, 2009 by lindahurd

Electronic Rock Guitar Shirt

 

This is an interesting idea: an Electronic Rock Guitar Shirt sold by, of course, ThinkGeek.com.  Have you ever wanted to play guitar on your shirt?  Well, now you can.  The electronic rock guitar shirt allows you to play guitar on your shirt.  Each button on the shirt is a chord.  To top it off, the shirt has a miniature amp attached to it.  It sounds like something that would be fun to make, but probably pretty annoying in practice.

Google Music Search

Posted in Uncategorized on November 18, 2009 by lindahurd

Is the new Google music search part of Google Audio? I posted a couple of weeks ago about how Google was about to launch Google Audio.  Go to http://www.google.com/music and check out their amazing new music search.  Search albums, artists, song lyrics, and Google will show you anything and everything related to it.  The coolest feature of this music search function is that it allows you to stream songs for free.  This is through Google’s partnerships with imeem, Pandora, Myspace, Lala, and Rhapsody.  However, you can only stream a song one time, after that it plays a 30 second preview.  Still, it’s pretty neat.

Brian Eno Releases Second iPhone App

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on November 9, 2009 by lindahurd

I don’t own an iPhone, but if I did, I would download this app.

http://www.ipodnn.com/articles/09/09/21/allows.visual.improvisation/

“Brian Eno — best known for work as a producer and ambient musician — has released a second iPhone application, developed with the help of designer and musician Peter Chilvers. Called Trope, the app lets users create their own ambient music by drawing patterns with their fingers. The shape of each pattern creates a different tone.

Unlike the first Eno app, Bloom, Trope is described as producing darker music that is ‘more introspective, more atmospheric.’ Particular moods can be selected from an accompanying palette. The software costs $4, and requires a device with iPhone 2.2 firmware or better. For the sake of fidelity it is recommended that people use either headphones or external speakers, instead of earbuds or built-in speakers.”