Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Fun with USB Turntables

So .. what've I been up to?

Well, recently I've been mostly ... re-discovering my dusty old LPs. Having suffered enjoyed another birthday, I am now the proud owner of a USB turn-table. And jolly fun it is, too.

One of the entertaining fringe benefits to this is introducing the children to records. Now I'm not a DJ .. and no-one I come into contact with these days is either. My children aren't (quite) old enough to frequent clubs yet so they haven't really seen good ol' vinyl in action. My four-year-old is particularly amused by them.
"So .. how do they work?"

"What: you put the needle on it and it makes sound?"

Ho, ho, yes! I'm reminded of a conversation years ago when my eldest was about 2. We saw the shattered remains of a 7" single in the gutter. She pointed and said "CD-ROM, daddy!"

The turn-table ships with - and recommends - Audacity to do the actual recording and encoding. As I already have the latest version installed, this suits me down to the ground. The kids regularly play about recording themselves and speeding it up or adding weird effects. They make up skits and songs and all sorts. My hard-disk is filling up rapidly.

Speaking of which, I have another on-going project. Tagging MP3s. I have ammassed some 3300-odd tracks on my jukebox at home - from ripped CDs etc.. It makes more sense to have them in one place and in a format I can take anywhere. It also leaves me the legacy of tagging them all. Over 2000 were unlabelled.

In steps aTunes. A delightful clone of iTunes .. without the DRM nonsense.

So now I'm listening to "Up the Junction" .. ah, memories.

in reaction to the recent report that the English language is losing the hypen, I have made a concious effort to sprinkle this post with them. I'm like that; draw your own conclusions.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Not *Another* Millenium!

Ethiopia, we learn today, celebrates the Millenuim a little later than the rest of the world. Today, in fact.

I'm amused to see that an inability to count is not limited to the western world. What am I talking about? The old 2000-is-not-the-Millenium thang again. Need a detailed explanation? Read someone more authorative than me explain it. It's pretty simple, really. Start counting at 1 .. continue to 10. The start of the next decade is 11; not 10. The start of the next century is 101; not 100. The start of the next millenium is 1001; not 1000. The start of the next millenium is 2001; not 2000.

End of.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

A little BATty

For those who don't know, Belper Against Tesco Store is a group set up to oppose the planned Tesco Store [the clue's in the name]. The proposal has cause much controvery - as such proposals do.

Now every action, it has been said, has an equal and opposite reaction. I was amused, then, to see the recent poster campaign around Belper.

A new protest group against a Tesco superstore in Belper has been putting sarcastic posters up all over town. The group's name TABS, Tesco Against Belper Shops, is a play on BATS protest group Belper Against Tesco Superstore.

The poster is advertising a family day trip this Sunday (September 9) to Tesco's store in Alfreton.

It says: "The aim of the trip is to show Belper people what they could have built on some scrubby waste ground, just far enough away from the town centre so people will never have to walk up King Street again."

A spokesman for BATS, the group that is protesting the Meadows Edge site development, said TABS are nothing to do with them.

Whether you are for or against superstores - and specifically this one - you gotta love the noble art of parody.