Showing posts from November, 2010

Top 10 Music Picks of 2010

It's a bit early to post my top music picks of 2010 , but I've been adding to the list throughout this past year, and it's already grown to ten albums.  Compared to the last two years' Top 5 lists, that's a lot, so I'm going to post it now.

No surprise that the jazz pianists are well represented here.  Recently I got interested in the Hammond B3, which also shows up.  Several of the selections lean towards rich harmonic, evocative soundscapes.  Harmonic complexity is one way that musical ingenuity expresses itself, not always in fast bebop lines or modern polyrhythms.  This is some of the most beautiful music I have ever heard.

I should mention that a limited private edition CD by my musical mentor, the great Canadian jazz pianist Brian Browne, called the Erindale Sessions, is perhaps the album I treasure most from 2010. Although I don't believe this album is available for sale at this time, many of Brian's other albums are.

So here, without further ado…

Evented I/O web servers, explained using bunnies

This is probably the best, simplest explanation of evented IO web servers that I've seen. It explains how really really fast web servers work, and it has bunnies and a hyperactive squid! Awesome.
Evented I/O based web servers, explained using bunnies
PS. This is not to say that high-performance web servers like NGINX and Node.JS aren't threaded.  They are... they just use a thread pool.  So the hyperactive squid has a warren of bunnies at his beck and call.  How cool is that?  Very cool, because there's a squid AND bunnies.

Happy Thanksgiving

If you live in the US, which most of my readers do, I'd like you to know that up here in Canada, and in a lot of the rest of the world, we're looking at the unprecedented loss of civil liberties and freedoms evidenced by the unbelievable violations of personal privacy and basic human dignity propagated by the Transportation Security Administration, and we are thankful today that we live in free and democratic societies that still protect the rights and freedoms of their citizens.

There's a purple heart and a letter from President Franklin D. Roosevelt in my home to commemorate the sacrifice made in defense of freedom when my uncle died as a paratrooper in the 101st Airborne Division.  I know deep down that he and many others like him did not die so that innocent Americans could be strip searched, humiliated and assaulted in their own homeland by a government gone insane with security paranoia. That's not freedom. 

Happy Thanksgiving.

The Gig

I'm lucky enough to be in a band of local musicians who get called together a couple of times a year to perform at some pretty good gigs.  This weekend's event is to be the band for Robin Mark for a sold-out crowd of around a thousand.  In preparing for the concert I came across an old journal entry I wrote after one of the first gigs I played with this particular band.  It was fun to reflect back on those early experiences.

It's the afternoon before the show.  We set up and do a sound-check.  Somebody comes by and asks me if I have enough water.   They put a couple of bottles next to the piano.  Someone comes by and gives me an all-access pass on a lanyard.  It says "music team".

There's a door and it says "no admittance".  I go in anyway. I guess that's what the lanyard is for.  Down the hall past a number of paintings of flowers in earth-tone colors is another door; this one says "Headquarters".  Behind the doors is a large r…