Monday, January 25, 2010

Naturkundemuseum


Mandie and I went yesterday to the Naturkundemuseum. We saw towering dinosaur skeletons, an extensive collection of fossils, rocks and minerals, and lots of preserved animal specimens. I was particularly interested in the temporary exhibition about the deep sea, however it was not as exciting as I had hoped. Too many people made it difficult to get through the exhibit efficiently, and the exhibit was mostly text with occasional samples on display behind tiny windows. Peeking in these windows was an interesting behind-the-scenes of how the museum actually operates. I could see archives, labs, and old parts of the building not open to the public. My favorite part was looking in the windows of the doors we were not allowed to enter. The museum's roof was heavily damaged by firebombs in the war and the east wing was completely destroyed. Reconstruction is still underway. The east wing should re-open this year. We brought the camera, but realized too late that it was uncharged, so no pictures this time.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Lectures on Sound

I've been to two lectures so far this year. The first was a lecture by Steve Goodman (kode9) on Sonic Warfare. It was based on his research and his recently published book about the use of acoustic force to induce a state of psychological and/or physical discomfort, pain, fear, or torture, and efforts to use sound as a weapon. The second was an essay written and presented by G. Douglas Barrett titled, "Listening to Language: Text Scores, Recording Technology, and Experimental Music". I personally thought it was weak, hyper-focused on washed out examples, and failed to efficiently address the intended topic.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Twenty-Ten

Happy twenty-ten everyone!


This year, the blog is going to go little differently. My readership is slipping so I'm going to begin a more minimal approach, or at least shorter entries over all, to the blog. Don't worry if you happen to be a regular reader! A minimal approach means that I'm likely to post more often and include more focused and interesting updates. If I sense that readership starts picking up, then I will consider more intricate entries. Don't forget that it is easy to post comments or questions, to become a follower of the blog if interested, or to subscribe with RSS feeds. Also keep in mind, that there are links, in the menu to the top right of this page, that will lead you to Mandie's picasa photo album where you will find photos of us on adventures, and Mandie's blog. I wish everyone the best in the new year. Remember, that we are living in the future. Embrace it!


Sincere thanks to the Bruckner family, our friends, and families, for a wonderful holiday season! We spent Christmas in three western German towns eating delicious food, singing songs, and spending time with warm and cheerful friends. For New Years, we attended an excellent house party with several friends. There were djs, and lots of fireworks. A friend and I hopped in the snow with no shoes, and effigies of the old year were burnt in the fire. I believe this year will be a good one.