Friday, May 14, 2021

Is this game real?

The world is divided into two types of people: those who divide people into two type... and gamers.

Here's a quiz to puzzle both. Read the following descriptions and determine which games are real and which I have simply invented for entertainment purposes. There will be a couple of easy ones to give the gamers an unfair advantage.

I will supply the answers... eventually. No cheating by using the internets.

The entries are numbered to aid scoring. Are you ready? Set! Go!


Friday, April 09, 2021

What isn't design?

“Design is a reflective conversation with the situation.”
— Donald Schön

On social media Ed Devane asked the provocative question: “So, what isn't design?” This article will sketch out an answer, by first considering what design is.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Beef Rendang recipe

I had enough time today to try my hand at a new dish. I have cooked rendang exactly once before, but didn't have a recipe. Instead I relied on my memories of food prepared by others. For a short time there was an excellent Indonesian cook here in Limerick... his rendang was to die for. Of course, places that serve good food (prepared by hand, honest ingredients, no compromises) never last... so we need to cook for ourselves!

Saturday, March 13, 2021

All my music is now free

I have been pondering a question of economics for some time. Until now I have been pricing my albums at around 8 Euros. This is far less than many labels, so it's always been a "good deal."

I began by releasing music for free. If I can accurately recall my thought processes, I switched to paid albums in order to be "taken seriously" as an artist. This had something to do with setting up my label, Stolen Mirror.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

David Bowie: Five Years

It's been five years since Bowie passed away. I had never considered that there wouldn't be a year without him, when I wouldn't have the joy of wondering if he'd release any music, and if it would be any good.

Tuesday, January 05, 2021

2020: Releases and Productions

Everything considered, 2020 was a productive year for me. I released two albums of compositions, one long improvisation, two music videos, and contributions to several compilations. This post summarises these nine releases, with listening/watching links.

Monday, January 04, 2021

2020: Pandemic in Review

I teach at the University of Limerick and have a duty of care to my students. At the beginning of 2020 I started hearing about a new virus from China. Students returning from Christmas break were self-isolating and wearing masks where before they weren't. By the end of February I began searching for reports from Chinese researchers. These had been immediately translated to English and published in newspapers for the widest possible dissemination.

For this reason I was the first in my department to signal the arrival of COVID-19, the first to develop strategies (both personal and teaching), and the first to remove myself from campus. At the risk of crying wolf, I encouraged a pro-active approach.

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Dictionary of Musical Terms

Time for a little levity, so I went back into my files (thousands of unpublished articles) and discovered this... have fun adding your own terms!

Dictionary of Musical Terms

a cappella: smoke break for the accompaniment

a niente: future income forecast for students of composition

adagietto: fairly slowly but not that slowly, come on now, a little faster, do you think we have all day?

Friday, October 30, 2020

On Corbyn, smear campaigns, and journalism


You may have noticed, even if you care little for the politics of the UK, that Jeremy Corbyn has been suspended from the Labour Party. That's a party he joined at age 16, has been active in for 55 years, and recently led in an election highlighted by outright lies from the Tory party, combined with a smear-filled campaign of hate directed at his rational and measured policies. In this, the mainstream media were completely complicit.
Tuesday, September 15, 2020

DaVinci Resolve resource hub

I have been working with DaVinci Resolve for some time now, and I must say it has completely changed my video world. Media management, transcoding, timeline editing, animation, effects, colour grading... it seems to do just about everything. Furthermore, it's changed how I teach video, since it lowers the bar of entry to a professional-level feature set. When I recommend it to artists, it blows their minds. When I teach it to my students, they are empowered to do their best work.

However, like other professional video applications, Resolve is complex. I have a series of tutorials ready for publication, and will use this page as a launch pad for these videos.