[NetBehaviour] Analog Instrumentation
sondheim at panix.com
Tue May 2 22:49:16 CEST 2006
(apologies for so much of this stuff...)
Alpine zither. Relationships with ch'in and taksim. With VLF (very low
frequency) radio "events" which are deeply random, but often possess wave
trains. With the touch/caress of the resonant body which metaphorically relates
to elementary physics and the world at large. With elements of air, metal,
wood. Is theory ever final.
ii Take up: Exchange value: Digital. bit(n)|bit(m) Use value: Analog. bite(n,m)
Analog: the bite of the instrument, bight of the shore. Metal pegs tend to
slip, strings unwind or break, wood cracks, the body expands or contracts
dependent on humidity, soundboard warps, frets go out of true. The analog is a
tending. Analog noise: Finger noise, body-tapping, wolf notes, string and nail
contact positions, nail roughness, breath sounds, string squeak, fret sound,
fingerboard sound with bending, player's body movements against the soundbox.
The frequencies are inexact: no frets are ever true, string pressure sharpens
the pitch, there are a-harmonics and a-harmonic resonances, the instrument
couples to its support, the fingerboard and body warp slightly with finger
pressure, oxidations and dirt tender the string further out of true, there is
always peg slippage with pressure, vibrato and bending stretch imperfect metal
memory. A tending or movement back towards pitch, pitching as catastrophic
memory, sudden halting of sound for retuning. The mapping is always imperfect.
Labor: the labor of the arms, wrists, fingers, body leaning slightly towards
the fingerboard, careful breathing somewhat isolated from vibrato, muscle
tensions and memories paralleling dance. Warping: unequal expansion or
contraction of upper or lower soundboards or instrument sides, twisting of one
or another surface, unequal expansion or contraction of different woods or
metals, finger-pressure on one or another surface, expansion or contraction due
to cracking, humidity, pressure, wood curing, oiling and waxing, physical
Digital: Of this at a later date. Electronic noise and noise floors.
Human-instrument interface. Switch noise. Acoustic coupling of transducers
including microphones, earphones, speakers. Analog sound 'falling through the
cracks' depending on bandwidth. Data corruption and technological obsolescence
of computers and storage media. Problematic power supplies. Problematic of
analog noise. Problematic of acoustic space-mapping. Standing-waves, speaker
placement and cone inertia, line losses, failed checksums, bandwidth
limitations. Digital and digital reproduction.
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