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MusicScienceGuy
Greater Vancouver, Canada
Music is basically simple, but the piano makes it look hard
Interests: Alternative Musical instruments, Convergence of music and science, Psychoacoustics
Recent Activity
Jammer shortcuts - Identifying the key, the tonal centre (tonic) and scale How do we read from the score where to put the hand, and what fingers we’ll generally be using on our jammers? For a brief summary on the minor key system and the terms used, see The key,... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
Explaining the Minor scale system My guide to the minor scale system: essential features and terms for all musicians Minor scales are poorly and incompletely explained in my textbooks; fortunately, the excellent teachers at Douglas College and the alternate viewpoint provided by my jammer helped me understand the system. I... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
Jammer Problems The jammer has these minor, technical problems: Playing two notes with one finger requires accurate placement of the finger-tip, which slows play a bit. The keys should be reshaped to give a larger target area. The piano has a similar problem where the white keys narrow between the... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
Of all the possible isomorphic keyboard layouts, the Wicki-Hayden layout seems like it may be the fastest and most ergonomic. - How does it actually turn out in practice? Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
There is irony in the following story. Ten years ago I noticed that singers that play the piano have, on average, much better pitch-sense than those that learned in other ways. ... Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
The curious thing is that "learn, embellish; learn, embellish more" technique is very similar to the "deep practice" Daniel Coyle and others advocate. Training situations where one is at the edge of ability, making a controlled number of mistakes - and correcting them immediately – is an excellent way to practice. Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
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My jammers are not perfect, but are good enough to play onstage; they are gig-ready with quirks, just like any instrument. I have worked out an excellent jammer-keyboard fingering system and practiced for a few years to learn perhaps a hundred beginner-level songs. The fingering, in real-life play, is very efficient; with simple, fast, and only rarely awkward movements. Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
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In fact, this layout is the best, ergonomically, of all the instruments we have reviewed - see Isomorphic Musical Keyboards. Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
Do you want to gain a fresh insight into musical instrument design and music theory? Do you build or use 21st-century musical instruments? If so, this series of articles is for you. Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
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Where the future's instruments are designed (image courtesy Google Maps) A new Craftsman of Musical instruments If I was to visit a luthier, I have a preconception of the encounter; I would expect comfortable rooms and spaces with white plaster and the outside whitewashed and a garden of olive trees.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 5, 2018 at MusicScienceGuy
Concerning the sea ice extent decline slowing: I concur. To my eyes, the way the winds are currently pushing the ice around, plus the cloudiness of the big low over the central arctic may be creating nearly ideal camouflage for an extreme thinning of the ice. take a gander at the ice drift chart here: http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticicespddrfnowcast.gif All of the ice is being spread out, even the ice in Hudson's Bay and around Baffin Island. It's amazingly consistent, and can't last. Large areas are getting very thin ...
Toggle Commented Jun 9, 2016 on PIOMAS June 2016 at Arctic Sea Ice
This is pretty dramatic. Has there ever been such a flow of Sea ice out of Fram Straight before? http://www7320.nrlssc.navy.mil/hycomARC/navo/arcticicespddrfnowcast.gif What percentage of the MYI per day is leaving for the Atlantic?
Toggle Commented Apr 15, 2016 on Beaufort under early pressure at Arctic Sea Ice
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Thoughts on the Dualo du-touch Highly successful musical instruments are never orphans; they are always part of a musical family, with different sizes, features and, of course, price: think of the guitar, violin and saxophone families. Players need a wide variation in price and power, of size and portability. Thus... Continue reading
Posted Apr 10, 2016 at MusicScienceGuy
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Explains how to build a choral shell to benefit singers, especially choral singers. We found the shells helped our choir better hear their mates on the risers. We think they also project a clearer sound to our audience. Suggests how to make quartet sized shell as well Continue reading
Posted Jul 10, 2015 at MusicScienceGuy
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How to improve your chorus with an inexpensive build-yourself choral shell that can be used for every performance. The shell is made from sheets of light, sturdy plastic attached with velcro. This article is part one of 3 planned. Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2015 at MusicScienceGuy
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scientists, while thoughtful, are notoriously slow and cautious, and partly because climate scientists never want to appear alarmist. As a rule, a scientific prediction either nails it, or understates. Continue reading
Posted Apr 29, 2015 at MusicScienceGuy
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Recently a call went forth for super-brief "elevator pitches" about global warming. I am no expert, but have followed the science, events and drama for more than 20 years. Here goes my stab at slimming the topic to the core: Earth's Blanket back then The Earth has an invisible secret:... Continue reading
Posted Apr 3, 2015 at MusicScienceGuy
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Creative Lab's Zx sound card works well and gives low latency, although the actual measured external latency numbers are more than expected. The Microsoft Midi latency is, in a word: awful: 90 ms. Use ASIO driver, and ideally a sound card that meshes with the ASIO driver. Continue reading
Posted Mar 29, 2015 at MusicScienceGuy
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It's now possible to get very low latency on a Windows desktop computer by using a Sound Blaster Zx cord. To do this, it's best to use both sound cards: the Zx for the music, and the on-motherboard chipset for Windows messages. Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2015 at MusicScienceGuy
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To make an instrument ... A new instrument is something that you are going to be spending serious time with, perhaps more than you do with your girlfriend/boyfriend. So it's not a bad idea to check it out, to see if it will hold out for the years that it... Continue reading
Posted Dec 16, 2014 at MusicScienceGuy
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Creating an new instrument is pretty complex, but once done, there's still one heck of a lot to do. We start with the outside of the Dualo and look at the packaging. Continue reading
Posted Dec 13, 2014 at MusicScienceGuy
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My Christmas present arrived today, courtesy of my very understanding wife. It's a Dualo du-touch, made in Fr ance and invented by an group of young enthusiasts. Price: about $1000 and change in Canadian loonies. Duty and taxes added a bit over 20% to that. Big caveat: anything I say... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2014 at MusicScienceGuy
Does the layout of the traditional, “piano” keyboard strike you as weird? Do you want an advantage over other musicians and look really cool? I’m starting an Alternate Musical Instrument Special Interest Group (sounds cooler than "Club") in the Greater Vancouver area. Do you: - really, hugely want to learn... Continue reading
Posted Nov 21, 2014 at MusicScienceGuy
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In two months a pair of unique, innovative instruments will cease being sold. This is the story of how they did not shake up the musical world, but should have. Why are they interesting? A handful of years ago two special musical devices; the AXiS-64 and the AXiS-49 midi controllers... Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2014 at MusicScienceGuy
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Will this instrument overturn instrument design? I have no association with Roger Linn, but I do feel that his intelligently designed instrument is going to shake up the musical world. It should allow for way greater expressiveness than a regular keyboard. Roger Linn Design - LinnStrument Roger says "A revolutionary... Continue reading
Posted Nov 1, 2014 at MusicScienceGuy