The Desktop Muse
A New Computer, a New Column, a New Life
This issue marks my return, after a one-year hiatus, to the pages of ATPM. A lot has transpired in the last year: I received my doctorate, got engaged, moved, bought a new computer, and finally made the leap to OS X. With all of these changes, I decided it was time for a new column too. So this issue also marks the debut of The Desktop Muse, a semi-regular column about the Mac, music, and multimedia.
Is There a Doctor in the House?
Well, yes…but…I am a doctor now, but not that kind of doctor. I have a Ph.D., which, for the uninitiated, stands for “piled higher and deeper.” In other words, I have “a license to bulls**t.” All joking aside, I take my newfound place in the community of scholars very seriously. I have to. It’s a really hard club to get into, though I don’t think anyone can kick me out. It’s sort of like tenure, which I hope to have one day as well.
The Bachelor’s Life is Behind Me
No more sedimentary layers of laundry, no more alternating ramen noodles, mac and cheese, and pizza for dinner, and no more staying up until 2 AM. OK, scratch that last one, but the bachelor’s life is behind me for good. I’m engaged and I couldn’t be happier. The date is set (next June) and we’ve gotten a head start on wedding arrangements so we can save as much money as possible.
Welcome to the XXIst Century
My G3 350 had a good run, but I was tired of running a twentieth century computer and a twentieth century operating system. So I bought a dual-boot 1.25 GHz G4 with a SuperDrive. Of course, once you have a new computer, how can you keep using same old monitor? So I picked up a 17" LCD monitor. It’s not an Apple display, but it was $200 less, and the color matches my G4 perfectly.
Now I’m running OS X, and I’m quickly learning to love it. Music and audio software is far more plentiful now as well. I’ve already upgraded Max/MSP and Reaktor (both free), purchased Bias Deck (which ships with Peak LE included), and have pre-ordered the Finale 2004 upgrade (with a $20 discount). In the meantime, I still have OS 9 available (as a boot OS) for my older versions of Cuebase VST, Vision, and Metasynth.
Future upgrades? At some point I’ll want to own the entire Bias line. Soundsoap. SuperFreq, and Vbox are fairly reasonable, but a Peak upgrade will set me back $400. I may wait until I get an academic position and the pricing perks that come with it. I’m looking for a good affordable sequencer that I can sync with Deck. I’m also waiting on an overdue upgrade for Metasynth. In addition, I want to explore my interest in multimedia. I plan to pick up Final Cut Express by the end of the year. I also hope to pick up DVD Studio Pro at some point in after the new year, and, once Metasynth is updated, I may purchase both Artmatic and VTrack as well. By next spring, my fiancé and I plan to own both a digital still camera and a DV Camcorder, so I will have the tools to indulge my imagination.
I inaugurate a new column, The Desktop Muse. Future entries will be longer and will feature more music and multimedia, less me, and definitely no bulls**t. See you again soon.
Also in This Series
- Robert Moog: A Tribute · September 2005
- Convergence · February 2005
- Getting More Out of Your GarageBand Loops · December 2004
- This Song Belongs to You and Me · September 2004
- Sitting in on the Jam · April 2004
- The World’s Biggest Jam Session · March 2004
- The New iMac: Where Does it Fit in? · December 2003
- A New Computer, a New Column, a New Life · November 2003
- Complete Archive