#DesignThyself – Week 5

I got myself a Korean tutor. We are meeting next Monday! I’ll keep everyone posted, but I think I should have enlisted help much sooner.

I’ve made it halfway through Level 2 of Talk to Me in Korean. I’m continuing my Gangnam Style infinite repeat loops on my commutes to and from Staten Island. I think it’s starting to gel and enter my brain through my subconsciousness.

Two more awesome renditions of Gangnam Style:

ICM Final Project Proposal: Text2Drum

For my ICM final project, which I am calling Text2Drum, I seek to explore the rhythmic qualities of language.  Text2Drum will read text from a file, and convert each letter of the text to a drum/percussion that I will assign to correspond to each letter of the alphabet.  Spaces and punctuation marks will be interpreted as a musical rest, that is to say a period of silence.  The program will also display the text on screen while playing back the drum samples.  In using Text2Drum to generate percussion patterns, I aim to translate text into a new musical language and seek to reclaim the rhythmic nature of language found in oral communication that is lost in written language.

I also hope to make a second version of Text2Drum which will be interactive, which will have an interface that will allow a user to type in text that Text2Drum will then convert into a rhythmic pattern.

Stop the Clash Campaign Update


This is an update on AVAAZ.org’s Stop the Clash of Civilizations campaign:

The Clash Video is now up on YouTube and available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Chinese Traditional, Chinese Simplified, Japanese, Hebrew, and Arabic.

Help us to promote our campaign by Digging us here.

You can download a copy of the video in English (Zipped MOV file) here to view when your computer is offline or to upload to your iPod, Zune, or other multimedia player.

“Burka, Burka, Mohammed Jihad!” Shalom, Salaam, Peace out!

Weekend Update – JETAANY Shinnenkai and Galit’s Birthday

On Friday night, I attended the JETAANY Shinnenkai (新年会 "New Years Party") at Naniwa in Midtown.  We sat on the floor of a traditional Japanese tatami room and ate sushi and fish and beef nabe (鍋 hotpot). Very 懐かしい (nostalgic) of my days in Japan.  The 飲み放題 (all-you-can-drink) definitely helped to up the festive factor. 😉 I can't believe it's only been six months since coming back to the States, but sometimes my life in Japan seems like a distant fantasy. I won second prize in the raffle drawing, an autographed copy of The Accidental Office Lady, by Laura Kriska. First prize was a 1 year basic membership at the Japan Society.  The evening could not have been any more perfect, except for the lack of karaoke.  I read the whole book today (Sunday), and really identified with Laura's experience in Japan, and her descriptions of the culture and the environment really made me miss Japan again.


On Saturday, I trekked out to Brooklyn to attend my co-worker, Galit's, birthday party in an amazing loft in an otherwise desolate corner of Greenpoint.  Definitely worth the trip and what seemed like a 50-mile hike from the Lorimer stop on the L-train.  Shame on those who chavved out on the party!  Chav is an established term, but "chav out" is an expression that I am nearly single-handedly trying to spread.

We Will Not Be Silent

I got my We Will Not Be Silent T-shirt in the mail today.  For background information, check out my previous post about the controversy behind this shirt.  Here's a picture of me modeling it with pride, standing up for civil liberties and democratic principles: