Something Else That Was Supposed to be Good For You is Bad For You

I need to start compiling a list of all of dietary additives which (within my relatively brief lifetime) were touted as being good to eat but turned out to be bad to eat. The latest is soy, which besides being the obvious base of things like soy milk and veggie burgers, is in 60% of all processed food sold in Britain, a statistic which is presumably about the same in the US. It turns out that the stuff is loaded with plant estrogens, which means that if you (for example) feed soy milk to your baby, you’re giving him/her the equivalent of a whopping big dose of birth-control pills. The article is here. It’s yet another good reason to not eat processed foods, just in case you don’t have enough already. read more

Turning Comments Back On

I’m tentatively turning the commenting mechanism back on for this site. I’m trying a security plug-in that theoretically makes it much more difficult for comment spammers to exploit the site. If it turns out to not work, I’ll turn comments off again. We’ll all see how it goes, I suppose.

Yes, It’s Been Hot Lately

If you’ve been thinking that it’s been unusually hot recently, you’re right, according to the people who keep track of such things. It’s also been dry, unless you happen to live on or near the west coast. Now my utility bills are higher in the summer than in the winter, thanks to having to run the air conditioning basically all the time. The heat doesn’t bother me too much, but Tracie basically becomes immobile in temperatures above the mid 70s.

Audio Damage Plug-in Featured in Computer Music Magazine

I keep forgetting to mention this, but thanks to the lag in distribution time for UK magazines in the US it’s still relevant. The July issue of Computer Music magazine has a free Audio Damage plug-in on its DVD-ROM, and the magazine itself has a three-page article on how to use it. Buying the magazine is the only way to obtain this plug-in; we made an arrangement with CM to give them exclusive distribution rights for it.

CM is my current favorite music-tech magazine, and not just because of our relationship with them. The magazine content has an enthusiastic and unpretentious tone, the technique articles are full of genuinely useful advice, and I can’t help but be amused by the occasional Britishisms of language. The cover DVD contains software that’s actually useful (instead of just demo versions you can download from the web yourself) as well as a big pile of samples that’s different each month. It doesn’t have quite the critical and technical depth of Sound on Sound but it’s much more worthwhile than Keyboard (which I’ve given up on altogether) and usually more interesting than Electronic Musician. read more

Bad News, Good News for the Synthesizer-Building Community

The bad news is that Synthesis Technology will stop selling kits by the end of the year, and is discontinuing several modules altogether. The official announcement is here. (It’s worth noting that Paul’s having a 15% off sale soon.) While this is obviously a bummer for those of us who buy module kits from Paul, I’m glad that he’s staying in business in some manner. The related electronics industry sea-changes brought about by RoHS and the shift to SMT mean that small operations like Synth Tech have to either change or perish. read more