Composer, electronic musician, improviser

El MuCo IBeam Performance Recording — More

Hello El MuCo fans!  Below you can find pictures and recordings from the show at IBeam on the 12th.  I will upload the audio for the group improv and from Rich’s set when I have time to edit it!  Happy listening!

Many thanks to Heather for taking photos and video!

El MuCo Set: IBeam

All Sets: IBeam

All photos by Heather Strycharz

Filed under: El MuCo, , , , , , , , ,


Glossary of terms often found on the pages of this site
This page will be updated often.

Algorithm: an algorithm is a general rule set (finite) that is used to solve a particular problem.  An algorithm is best when it solves one problem and it does so efficiently, using the smallest number of instructions required to perform its task.

Arduino: [taken from the site] Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.

bend: an adjustment made to an existing circuit that alters it in a way audibly perceptible (and awesome.) or that causes functional change (flow of charge, etc.) [WARNING] NEVER attempt to bend an instrument that is plugged into the wall:  AC + metal + you = death.

distortion: distortion may be defined many ways depending on the signal that is being distorted.  Very generally, distortion is the addition of noise to a signal.  Here, noise is defined as anything that is not part of the signal when running under standard conditions.  In other words, distortion occurs when something causes some part of the signal (amplitude, voltage, etc.) to exceed the ability of the conductive medium (component parts, amplifier, speaker) to represent the signal accurately.

hardware hacking/HH/circuit bending: using any means to modify an existing electronic product to create new functionality, either in the motor/physical or sonic domains.

LED: a light emitting diode.  LEDs are in just about every piece of electronics.  Mostly used to let you know if your electronic device is on, they can also be useful for testing circuits.

lick-n-stick: to wet one’s finger with ones saliva (!) and apply it to the circuit in an effort to sniff out bends.  Very useful when attempting to locate the timing circuit; when pitch goes up, you’re on the right track.  [WARNING] as noted ALL OVER the internet and in books, one should never attempt to bend a toy that is plugged into the wall!  AC = death, esp. when you are touching it with your spitty finger.

potentiometer: a variable resistor with a third adjustable terminal. The potential at the third terminal can be adjusted to give any fraction of the potential across the ends of the resistor.

resistor: A resistor is a two-terminal electronic component that produces a voltage across its terminals that is proportional to the electric current passing through it in accordance with Ohm’s law: V = IR

sniff out: to look for bends.

SuperCollider: SuperCollider is an audio/visual programming language.  [BIAS] It is vastly superior to all other audio synthesis languages ever written.

Filed under: Phase 1, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Reset Open Firmware by removing ALL RAM

WARNING: I will not be held responsible for anything you do to your computer.  Please follow any of the below instructions at your own risk.  Be sure to always follow Apple DIY Hardware Replacement instructions (you can download these for any model in pdf format), use official Apple parts, and use anti-static discharge kits and the proper tools, do not steal or commit adultary (on purpose), make sure to feed your pets, and love Our Beloved Leader Barack Obama with all your hearts, minds, and souls.


I know everyone is just hungering for this solution, especially since Intel Macs after a certain date do not even use Open Firmware (they use a firmware protection called Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI) technology)… however, for those 3 of you who have picked up old PPC macs that you desperately want to defile and warp to your nefarious purposes, but cannot because of open firmware restrictions (not letting you netboot, or boot from CD, or use any sort of keyboard boot options), even with the old ” remove the RAM and reset PRAM” trick, this post may be just what you are looking for!

CASE: iMac G5 (flat panel) has open firmware that does not allow keyboard boot commands.  Additionally, the machine is set to Net Boot, so at boot, there is blue globe, followed by a sad folder with a question mark (“where’s my net boot friend” it screams!)

OLD SOLUTION: Open Firmware can usually be reset by removing a stick of RAM and resetting the PRAM: remove the RAM (after unplugging the machine!), close all bits up again, and start the machine – at the chime, hold down apple(command)+option+p+r.  You will hear another chime – hold for three total chimes, then let the thing go.  This will reset the open firmware password, effectively removing the password protection.

This can sometimes fail, however, as it did for me in the case above.  I cannot say exactly why, but the following DID remove the password protection.

SOLUTION: remove ALL RAM from the machine.  In this case, the iMac G5 has parallel RAM slots, both easily accessible and both accepting the same RAM quantities.  I first started the machine, let it try to netboot,and stuck in my official Leopard Install DVD (purchased from Apple :D) which it gladly accepted.  I then powered off the machine.  I unplugged it, removed both RAM sticks, popped the back on, and started her up.  Instead of hearing the usual happy apple startup chime that we all love, a heard a frantic and death-signalling beep.  Having no RAM at all makes for sad macs!  No key combos work, no graphic interface, nothing: a Formless Void…  So I unplugged the machine, popped the RAM back in (swapping the two sticks which were botht the same kind — 512 ), plugged and powered it on.  Upon hearing the chime (return joyous happy chime!), I held down the PRAM reset command above (apple(command)+option+p+r), for two chimes.  Immediately after the second chime, I released the PRAM reset keys and held down c to boot from CD (in this case, DVD) and viole,  triomphe!

With some models you may not be able to get at all of the RAM: such is the case with the snoball, for example.  Try the above removing all the RAM you can.  In a worst-case scenario, all solutions will fail, and to boot (sorry!) your disc is stuck in the machine and hitting eject will not spit it out… :'(  Hold the mouse button on startup to eject the disc… at least you have that back now!

If you have other solutions that worked for you, post ’em below!

Filed under: Miscellany, , , , , , , , ,

G O I N G S O N : L O C A L (ISH)

fritz Art of Fritz Horstman
kane Music of Brian Kane
fritz Hartford Phase Shift
fritz Hartford Sound Alliance
Lique Art of Philip Lique
Lique Music of Matt Sargeant
strycharz Art of Heather Strycharz
uncertainty Uncertainty Music Series

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Handmade instruments by Scott Petersen and Brian Kane at Artspace New Haven