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Thursday
Nov062008

Week 4: Shooting starts at the moon

Fourth week covered five more chorus types revolving around contrasting ideas in swing lines, harmony, melody, rhythm, and phrasing.

I wrote a T—T style chorus in C major. I speed up phrasing on the swing lines and end on V chord to make a 2nd round possible, or back to verse start on C.

Unfortunately this week due to a cold my vocal talents diminished significantly. Or “sing-nificantly”, as my daughter would say.

Title: “Shooting stars at the moon”

F........G............A...
Shooting stars at the moon
F..........Fmin...
With you I could
..Emin.........A....
I wish that we would
F........G............C......G
Shooting stars at the moon

Shooting starts at the moon.mp3

Tuesday
Nov042008

OpenID and email

VeriSign’s Nico Popp discusses Google’s latest OpenID provider. Nico is convinced it’s a good move — God knows I’ve always claimed URLs make bad user identifiers — and be that as it may, but the arguments are flawed.

Nico claims

“The beauty is that Google did not even have to force a button or any branding on relying party web sites,”

which is in itself true, but what he skips is that the relying party has to amend how it processes discovery on given user identifiers. So either way, the RP has to do extra work. Nothing is free.

Nico continues

“The choice of identifier alone will make it easier for consumers to choose Google over FaceBook,”

but that only makes sense right now. The Facebook platform already is a de facto email network. It only takes FB a little bit of work to provide external email identifiers like alice@facebook.com, and whatever work has been done for @gmail addresses now works for FB, too, providing there is some sanity to the discovery phase.

And FB can do this without providing any external email services for their users at all.

It will be interesting to see what happens.

Thursday
Oct302008

Swap Ctrl and Caps lock

On Linux and want to swap locations of Ctrl and Caps Lock? Then save this in a file swap_caps_ctrl.modmap:

remove Lock = Caps_Lock
remove Control = Control_L
keysym Control_L = Caps_Lock
keysym Caps_Lock = Control_L
add Lock = Caps_Lock
add Control = Control_L

and then simply

$ xmodmap swap_caps_ctrl.modmap

(The tip is actually in the xmodmap man page, see $ man xmodmap, but hard to find if you don’t know where to look.)

Tuesday
Oct282008

Week 3: What part of no don't you understand?

Third week and the tempo keeps going on. Daily practices precede every assignment and I’m becoming better and better… at least at mastering GarageBand, if nothing else.

This week was an in-depth look into bridges, or middle eights. These sections act as bridges between verses and choruses. A good bridge can make or break a song. The Beatles, of course, were masters at bridges.

For this week I tried to do a song that would appeal to the (early) teen girl audience like High School Musical.

To accomplish this, I “dumbed down” the lyrics to a simpler level and reused a verse from earlier assignment. I also experimented by raising the chorus one step (Amaj instead of Gmaj in verse). It seems to give the song a very pushy feel, which is what I wanted.

Song is: Verse/Chorus/Verse/Chorus/Bridge/Chorus

Title: “What part of no don’t you understand?”

Verses:

G.........Bm......C...........Em..
You're so weird   You made me cry
Am......C.........D.....G....D...
So many times   I don't know why

G...........Bm...........C......Em..
It's what I feared   And what I feel
Am......C.........D.....G.......
So many times   It must be real

Chorus:

A............
Stop calling me
C#...........
It's over now
D.................E.................
There's not gonna be a second chance

A............
Stop texting me
C#...........
It's over now
D.................E..................
What part of no don't you understand?

Bridge:

E#dim......................F#dim..........
But then one day You gonna come back again
....G..........Bdim......
And maybe I'll open my arms 
....G7...........
And take you back   ...NO!

What part of no don't you understand.mp3

Friday
Oct172008

Week 2: Hold Me Tonight

This week saw us getting into writing contrasting verses. This example is a good start, but lacks in some areas. The phrasing of the chorus don’t contrast enough, and the pitch structure is too similar to the verse. It was a very insightful lesson, though.

Verse 1

G.......Bm............Em...
Tuesday evening in November
C.......Em.............D...
We were walking in the cold
G.......Bm............Em...
I wonder can you still remember
C.........Am.......D..
It wasn't too long ago

Chorus

G.................G/F#............Em....Em/D
You would hold me in your arms forever
C..........Em..
Hold me so hard
C.......C/B...Am....Am/G  
Hold me oh so tight
G.................G/F#............Em....Em/D
You would pray that I would stay forever
C..........Em..
Hold me so hard
C.......C/B...Am....Am/G  
Hold me tonight

Verse 2, same music as verse 1

Wednesday thinking of September
Making up with nothing said
Dreaming of us both together
And all the good times we had

[repeat chorus]

Hold Me Tonight.mp3