Today is the first day the 2014 RPM Challenge, which is the National Novel Writing Month of music! The goal of the RPM challenge is to compose and record an entire album during the month of February! I accepted the challenge by dusting off my Cacophonator and Mohogonator, and got to work making music after dinner today. As today also marks the 50th anniversary of the Beatles invasion, this project drew inspiration from the Beatles’ back catalog!
I used the dynamic duo of Cacophonator and Mohogonator with Auditionator (i.e. Adobe Audition) to record a session for about 12 minutes at a blazing fast 192kHz sample rate. After chopping the recording into individual tracks, I digitally slowed them down to the customary rate of 44.1kHz, thereby expanding the work to its final ~45 minute length. For inspiration while I was recording, I listened to Beatles songs sped up to 435% (which is 192/44.1) of their customary speed. My tracks needed a bit of post-processing: on some of them I chose to bump the pitch back up an octave or two and add “Beatle Fades” to the beginning and end. Anyway, within twenty minutes after the recording was made, I had edited the songs and uploaded them. You’ve read that correctly, in less time than it takes to listen to the pieces, they were composed, recorded, processed, mastered, named and uploaded.
Today is also the 50th anniversary of the first Beatles song hitting #1 on the US pop charts: “I Wanna Hold Your Hand.” This whole project was inspired by this apparent coincidence in timing, and each track was directly inspired by listening to the sped-up Beatles original. I hope you enjoy each of the 11 tracks I created!
While My Cacophonator Gently Weeps
Got To Get You Into My Cacophonator
All You Need Is Cacophony
With A Little Help From My Cacophonator
Sgt. Cacophonator’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
Cacophonator Came In Through The Bathroom Window
Lucy In The Cacophonator With Diamonds
Got To Get Cacophonator Into My Life
A Hard Day’s Cacophonation
You’ve Got To Hide Your Cacophonator Away
Cacophonator Wants to Hold Your Hand
It may be more convenient to listen to the entire album: “Cacophonator 2: Electric Boogaloo; A Love Tragedy in 11 Parts” on the RPM Challenge site’s Cacophonator page. Just scroll down to “My Player.” There is plenty of February left: I encourage everyone to participate!
I did a few glass etching classes last month, and the timing was good because people were looking for unique gifts they could make for the holidays, and a personalized etched drinking glass makes a fine gift!
We started out by cutting vinyl on the Silhouette Cameo and then sticking it onto glass bottles. This let everyone get a feel for the sandblaster before they moved on to a real glass.
After everyone used the sandblaster I helped people get their artwork ready, we cut the vinyl, and then everyone etched their glass or mug. (We also got a few lessons on troubleshooting the “temperamental” sandblaster.)
Unfortunately I was too darn busy running the class to take any photos (though Ben did) but I liked what Audrey did, so I pretty much copied her and made my own “Milwaukee Makerspace Racing Team” drinking glass. Here it is!
Here’s a close-up of the etch. It looks pretty good! The process isn’t too hard, but there are a lot of little details to know along the way. I’m glad I could get people up to speed. (I guess my etching of 300+ items back in October helped!)
If there’s still interest, I can run another class, but there’s only two people right now who missed it, and I’d like to get a few more people before committing to a full class. (Rumor has it we may also be seeing a sandblaster upgrade soon!)
After a long series of manipulations, the CT scan derived face was successfully used to make a pencil holder (of all things!). It is about 100mm high and took about 9 hours to print. You can find files that you can use to make your own mash-ups of my face on thingiverse: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:203856
Today was spent researching all the manipulations involved in getting a CT scan into printable form and I managed to get a print out of it. The process starts with DeVide where the dicom data from the CT scan is processed using a dual threshold, decimation filter, and stl writer. The stl file contains a lot of unwanted stuff, in this case, soft tissues inside my head that add triangles but won’t be seen in the print, so those are removed by applying ambient occlusion followed by selecting and deleting vertices by “quality” (which will be very low values for vertices on the interior of the object). This process invariably blows small holes in the desired surface, so you apply a “close holes” filter to fix that (which closed up the nostrils very nicely). Next you open the stl file in netfabb and rotate and clip unwanted external stuff and apply repairs as necessary. Finally, drag it into slicer and scale it. slice and print.
First successful ego print!
CT Scan with lower threshold swept
While investigating software to extract bone data from CT scans and turn it into 3D printable STL files, I played with a CT scan of my own head that was used to treatment plan orthodontics. I have been using DeVide to process the data and finding it is not only easy to use, but a lot of fun!
The animated gif was made by sweeping the lower threshold of a dual threshold module from -800 to 900 in steps of 100 with the upper threshold fixed at 1400. The effect is to strip away the lower density tissues leaving only dense bone at the end of the sweep. I saved the result of each run as a png file then converted to an animated gif using an on-line service.