Logic Audio FAQ

Been getting into Logic Audio a bit lately, so here’s a little bookmark for myself, which the rest of you must ignore, or else: a Logic Audio FAQ,

Best. Laptop. Ever.

So Bash just bought herself a 15 inch Powerbook, and is acting all smug and Mac-user-like. Just wait, however, until she sees this, far superior, product. Best. Laptop. Ever [gamma]

Six degrees of Brian Eno

I was overjoyed to discover recently that my wife has met Nelson Mandela.

I wasn’t particularly excited about Nelson Mandela, although I’m sure he’s a nice chap. No, what really got me excited was the realisation that Nelson Mandela is of course a drinking buddy of Bono, and Bono’s spent large amounts of time in the recording studio with one of my heroes, namely Brian Eno.

Hence, here are my Five Degrees Of Brian Eno:

Andy GimblettBasheera KhanNelson MandelaBonoBrian Eno


The Mathematics Genealogy Project

The Mathematics Genealogy Project [gamma].

Find any mathematician, his “parent” (i.e. dissertation advisor) and “children” (i.e. students).

I know that one of my colleagues is a ‘grandstudent’ of Turing but although Turing is listed here, my colleague isn’t. :-) I’ll have to remember who it is, find the details, and submit them.

Later: a sharp-eyed student pointed out that it’s Phil Grant, as you can see here.

2007-01-27: today I noticed that two more of my colleagues, Anton Setzer and Ulrich Berger, are grandstudents of Hilbert, in a line going back to Gauss, Dirichlet, Fourier, and Lagrange. Rather impressive.


Shell scripts in 20 pages [gamma].

Right, that’s enough gammatron-catchup for one afternoon, it’s time I did some marking.

No rootkits on me, apparently…

chkrootkit – check your local Linux machine for root kits [gamma]. Gladly, it claims I’m clean.

Digital black & white

Tips for converting colour digital pictures to black & white in Photoshop/Gimp [gamma]. By tips, we mean that this goes beyond the basic “convert to greyscale” and into adjusting constrast levels, etc. for better results. Nice.

Ghostscript PDF writer tips

Ghostscript PDF writer tips. For ages now, I haven’t been able to convert Postscript to PDF using ps2pdf on my box because the pages were coming out the wrong size, and I couldn’t find out how to fix it in the documentation. This page has brought back my happiness, and now I can produce lovely PDF notes, exams, handouts, and papers natively on my dekstop box without bloody logging into another box every time I want to make the PDF. It’s pure joy, it really is.

Hard to believe I only got 55% on this geek test [bash], isn’t it? (Warning: somewhat broken in Opera under Linux, alas.)

Hey Hey 16k

Hey Hey 16k – required viewing for anyone who ever loved a ZX Spectrum. If you didn’t, well, go and watch it anyway, and ponder what might have been.

Shame it doesn’t get to the (fantastic) chorus until the end of the song, which as any pop mogul would tell you is entirely the wrong thing to do…

Meatspace Gimboland

Oh. My. God.


mixtapehost.com – download free DJ mixes, some of them very long, in various styles. My head is currently bobbing to this one. Via [seymansey]

Planet Knuth

Wow… For perhaps the first time, I’ve just learnt something from a first-year report I’m marking. Apparently, Donald Knuth has a planet named after him. Yes indeed, ladies and gentlemen, we hereby present, Planet Knuth.

The Shining in 30 Seconds Re-enacted by Bunnies

The Shining in 30 seconds re-enacted by bunnies – does what it says on the tin, though I think it could have stood being a minute long, or maybe two.

SNDREC32.EXE grooves

SNDREC32.EXE grooves – very cool. “Getting creative with Windows”, as Andrew put it…


Bloody hell… A bumble bee has just flown in through the open window (it’s a beautiful day here in Swansea, folks), and proceeded to alight on my mixer, right next to a big red jack that’s stuck in one of the sockets, and now it’s acting as if the things a flower: waggling its bum, brushing its legs down its sides, and generally doing what bees do.

Hmmm, it seems to be lying in just one place waggling its arse gently. I wonder if it’s OK. Maybe I should take a look with a view to rescuing it, should it be in bumbletrouble. Bumble bees have a reputation (in my brain at least) of being among the most chilled out of bees, bumbling around in a friendly manner and never stinging anyone who didn’t deserve it. So my chances are good, I hope. Here goes!

Well, that didn’t happen… Just as I sprang into action, so did el bee, finding his way to the window and grinding against it angrily for a while, looking more and more like a hornet every moment now that I thought about it, until gladly, he got with the program and headed two feet to the left, there to exit whence he came. Another happy ending, as is, indeed, usually the case with bumblebees.

Mumbles tides times

Tide table for Mumbles, where I live.

mutt and imap

How to use IMAP email with mutt – yes, it really is that easy. Nice.

Smashing the stack for fun and profit

Phrack 49 article 14 aka “Smashing the stack for fun and profit”, a classic article on hacker techniques for the exploitation of buffer overflow bugs. I should consider talking about this in my C programming course – should get the more mischevious students excited, at least.

I was amused to note that the author calls themself “Aleph One”, which is also the name of a tape I put together about six years ago of the music I’d created up to that point. As it happens, I’m currently in the process of recording those tracks from the minidisc on which they currently live, and anticipate publishing them in Ogg Vorbis format (mp3s suck, people!) Real Soon Now.

I used the name because I’d been blown away by learning about infinite cardinals in my set theory lectures as an undergraduate. Aleph Zero is the smallest infinite number, equal in size to the number of integers that exist. Aleph One is the next one up, equal in size to the number of reals (ie decimals). It all gets crazy from there, and is somewhat explained here (where what they call Aleph Null is what I call Aleph Zero).

Lots of free VST plugins

Lots of (apparently) free VST plugins.

… and a few more here, too, including the rather nice “Tapeworm” – yes folks, it’s a Mellotron.

Georgeous, simply geogeous

I seem to have a mental block against writing the word “gorgeous” right first time. It always comes out as Georgeous. I don’t even know that many Georges – what’s going on in my cerebral cortex?

Studio black magic

Black Magic – old Sound On Sound article on some audiophile/hi-fi good-practices/myths/snake-oils and their applicability (or otherwise) in a studio setting.

House music in a nutshell

House music in a nutshell [bash].

Speed test

NDO Bandwidth Speed test, which might be of interest to my brother Mike, who’s got that pleased look on his face ‘cos he’s just got ADSL installed. :-)

Alien venus flytrap jazz hand syndrome

Alien venus flytrap jazz hand syndrome, or, as Rich puts it, “just weird”.

Orkut rumour mill

Allow me to contribute to the rumour mill. I just received this message:

Word on the street:

[09:19] <@Lonewolf> orkut's had its hardware confiscated by the FBI for peddling child porn

Certainly the website is down. Presumably some bright spark was using one of the communities for this nefarious purpose. Shame, I still hadn’t got a high enough sexy rating to show on my front page…

If you have no idea what I’m talking about, don’t worry. :-)

Later: time to quosh the rumour, apparently they’re just having DNS problems (again). Jolly good.

Team Laser Explosion!

Team Laser Explosion! – rad.

Do you like secrets? There’s a fan club too.

Your bread sucks

The bread you buy from the supermarket sucks, but then all my German colleagues have been telling me this for ages, rye-chompers that they are…

At the root of the problem is “loss leading”. It works like this. Everyday groceries, such as bread, butter, milk and sugar, are classified as known-value items (KVIs). These are the key purchases whose price shoppers know and by which they judge which shop offers the best value. Most prices are no longer marked on packets but only appear on the shelves, where we notice them briefly. As a result, most of us have little clue what other items cost.

And, of course, the retailers’ losses on KVIs are made good in higher prices elsewhere – on those items we can’t remember the price of. Healthy foods, such as fruit and vegetables and wholemeal bread, tend to have the highest retail margins, whereas loss leaders are often the least healthy purchases – over-refined cereals, highly processed products full of salt, fat and sugar. So loss-leading drives a race to the bottom: it undercuts quality foods and distorts the market in favour of the cheapest and unhealthiest. And it has put most of our traditional bakers out of business.

Ah yes, the joy of free market economies.

ssh tunnels for fun and profit

Kewl, I just set up my first ssh tunnel, after reading this article. Very handy.

Happy Star Wars Day

Happy Star Wars Day, people, and may the fourth be with you.

I’m amazed I haven’t said that on Gimboland before. Lord knows I’ve annoyed Rich with it enough over the years, as I shall now proceed to do…