Sunday, June 24, 2007

Suuunnnnnday Morning:-)

Slept well last night after watching a disposable flick on google video, it was called "The Core" the tag says it all, this is a science fiction movie. Thats enough to let you know that the world is in crisis it has something to to with the earths core and nuclear weapons will solve the problem as they do in all modern sci-fi movies, see Armageddon, Sunshine, Deep Impact the list goes on.

After this I watched a fascinating documentary on the Lomo camera and the cult of photographers or lomographers that has grown up around this quirky device. I actually discovered this a few years ago and fell in love the idea of taking pictures with the four or eight lens version but I was at college at the time and and couldn't even afford the 40 or 50 Euro it cost. Cant actually remember where I originally heard about this device like so many other thinks probably due to the several years of substance abuse that went hand in hand with college life in Ireland but my interest in this has been revived by the documentary that you can watch in its entirety here. The whole film was done in the lomo style and has great music accompanying it all the way through. It charts the history of the Lomographic society and the history of the Russian factory where it was produced. My girl tell me I take crap pictures but maybe thats due in part to the embarrassment of being made lineup for family photos while holidaying with my parents which I think fostered a sort of impatience involving all things photographic when you have to interrupt what you are doing while dad takes several snaps of everyone deliberately posing. I think this is what appeals to me about the lomo philosophy.

The pictures all seem to capture movement in a spur of th emonent sort of way and the four lens version is designed to show the progression of the target over a period of time.

On the bike front I haven't been doing much cycling lately partly due to me being a bit lazy and the fact that I generally rise from bed between 12:00 and 14:00pm every day. Actually my girl decided to drag me from the bed at nine the other day so we could shop at the market and I felt physically ill for about 6 hours. Heres an interesting cycling blog my partner in crime discovered the other day which I have not yet completely explored but looks to be packed full of cool arty bike stuff for your perusal. He also has a show somewhere on Londons ResonanceFM another thing I've been meaning to get into. Their high tech low tech orientated circuit bent art house drone music is right up my street as you will know if you read my previous post. Heads up ill be putting my first DIY optically controlled sine wave noise maker thingy up for auction on Ebay soon, wish me luck as this is going to be my primary source of income for a while.

Oh I nearly forgot the little one turned me on to this dude who makes the most awesome bamboo bikes the other day. Totally cool in my opinion both in terms of design and sustainability.

And also lets not forget to mention the case of that poor dude in the states who was tasered (Or however you spell it) and arrested at an airport for pointing out the to a police officer (Actually I think he was airport police those guys are even worse) that he could cycle on the particular road he was on. Note to self never argue with a cop just tell them you'll comply and when they are not around just continue doing whatever it was you were going to do anyway. There is no point trying to talk in a logical fashion with most cops (I say most because there are exceptions to all rules) they are hand picked to be resistant to logic. You can read more about the story here.

Anyhow that enough from me din dins is almost ready and the smell is making me hungry...

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Summer is truly here and so is my HAYFEVER...

I love the outdoors but at this time of year it is with trepidation that I venture outside. Normally I do not like to take medication on a daily basis but right now its a necessity. Lyon is quite beautiful at this time of year and as someone who loves the outdoors its pretty horrible to fear leaving the confines of the flat.

You may have noticed that we haven't been blogging here for the past few months and it has to be said that in my case anyway there is really no excuse for this. My girl on the other hand has other blogs to maintain so its not her fault. I think a mixture of procrastination and a lack of inspiration are to blame.

On the cycling front I haven't been doing as much as I would normally do except the odd trip to the workshop I say odd because my visits have become more and more infrequent which is something I hope to remedy quite soon as I am starting my second custom guitar (Another project proceeding slower than expected). Will post pictures of the first on one soon, I promise.

That aside my creative projects are going well, well the design side is going strong but the realization is a bit weak right now. I suppose ill just have to get off my ass and really push myself to bring these things to life. The project I have been concentrating most on lately is the one which we hope will provide us with a small but necessary income and so making it real is very important. It consists of a small box of electronics that I'm calling a photo controlled synthesizer. When you turn it on it produces a tone typically 700 or 800 Hz depending on the level of ambient light. By interacting with the three light dependent resistors either with your hand or a light source a wide range of effects can be created from sliding , Theremin like scales to a ten note graduated scale. There are and a few other modes where you can mix and match modulating effects and create sounds ranging from techno beats (With a flashing Bike light) to weird droning sounds or crazy high pitch beeps and bips. Once you throw in some delay/reverb things really get interesting. Actually the amount of fun Ive been having playing with the prototype have probably cut into the point of this exercise which was to build these things for sale. There are some other functions too like signal paths that become active at various light levels and an optically controlled tremolo and something which is missing on all other optical instruments a setting which keeps the device silent until it is interacted with. When I finish this ill post on it. Maybe this blog can be a record of my work online?

The only other thing I want to post on is this cool open source DJ'ing software I found the other day. It was a necessity as we have volunteered to play a party for a friend in this month. Ive DJ'ed before a couple of times at private parties but never on a laptop. The software is called Mixxx its multi platform, free and really easy to use with enough functionality to get by with.

Bye for now, more posts soon...