I'm going to use the fact that Bandcamp (started in 2008) didn't exist
when I released the album (2007) as an excuse for not having done this
sooner. I know, pretty lame. But joining a site that asks for a Bandcamp
link if you have one makes as good a reason as any.
I should also add that it's still available on CD Baby Music Store, which also has
actual, physical CDs to sell you.
Music:Coffee, Computers, and Song on Bandcamp now; FAWM tomorrow
In 1985 I wrote a song called: "The World Inside the
Crystal". At the time there didn't seem to be any songs about
computers, or programming, that weren't meant to be funny. (I think there
might have been a few about AI or robots that were meant to be scary.
It's entirely possible that this was the first serious computer
song ever written.)
I also wanted to explore the notion that inside of computers is an
alternate universe where magic works. I don't remember whether I came up
with that, or somebody else mentioned it to me; it was definitely an idea
that I was kicking around at that time. Kick it far enough, and it winds
up someplace like this:
Beside the world we live in
Apart from day and night
Is a world ablaze with wonder
Of magic and delight
Like a magic crystal mirror,
My computer lets me know
Of the other world within it
Where my body cannot go.
You can only see the shadows
Of electrons on a screen
From the world inside the crystal
That no human eye has seen.
The computer is a gateway
To a world where magic rules
Where the only law is logic
Webs of words the only tools
Where we play with words and symbols
And creation is the game
For our symbols have the power
To become the things they name.
Now you who do not know this world
Its dangers or its joys
You take the things we build there
And you use them as your toys.
You trust them with your fortunes,
Or let them guard your lives.
From the chaos of creation
Just their final form survives.
Call us hackers, call us wizards,
With derision or respect,
Still our souls are marked by something
That your labels can't affect.
Though our words are touched by strangeness
There is little we can say.
You would only hear the echo
Of a music far away.
I can always tell the programmers in the audience -- they've been there.
It won a Pegasus Award for "Best Science Song" in 1997, possibly because I
mentioned it on Usenet.
There are several different recordings. The one to start with is Kathy
Mar's cover here,
off of her tape Plus &csedilla;a Change, with an awesome
synth track by Chrys Thorsen. The one on my CD is okay, although I'm not
all that happy with it now. It's way too fast, for one thing, and there
isn't an instrumental break before the last verse. It's on YouTube
courtesy of my distributor, CD Baby.
There have been some good ones in concerts. The one at Consonance
2009, with Tres Gique, is one of the better ones. Here's another, at
2009. Consonance 2012 appears to be my best (recorded) solo performance.
Audio players don't come off all that well on DW, but I'll close with one anyway.
Another largely unproductive day, especially at work, though I did manage
to make and write up some significant decisions about $current_project.
I tried to print the taxes, and was unsuccessful. Weird -- it worked
last year, on the same hardware and OS versions. Oh, well; I'll
take it in to work today and print there. I did, finally, manage
to track down and exorcise two "phantom printers" that have been around
for the last year on my desktop system. The magic file is
Most of the pain from the torn muscle was gone; what was left were some
secondary soreness in the neck and shoulder from working around it. I
still need to baby that arm; it's all too easy to forget that it's
injured at this point.
I found myself smiling when pocketnaomi came online on IM --
I'd missed her over the weekend. It feels a little odd to be noting that,
but simply noticing my mood is a big step for me.
I took a walk; the weather was cool and cloudy -- perfect for walking.
I came home before Colleen and her friends got back from Britex (a huge
fabric store in San Francisco that was having their Columbus Day sale),
and was surprised and happy to find a dealer order for CC S
waiting in my inbox, for delivery at OVFF.
It's amazing how much energy pain and recovery use up.