All I Know³
Information, transmission, modulation, and noise – 3rd Edition

I’m Listening to Q2 These Days

Lately I’ve taken to listening to the Q2 stream from WQXR in New York City. Now that WNYC (the major NPR station in NYC) has taken over the “classical music” station WQXR and made it non-commercial (and changed it’s on-air frequency from 96.3 to 105.9).

The WQXR offers two streams: It’s primary WQXR stream, which is like any classical music station, mostly the usual familiar stuff with lots of mindless chatter. (Why does so-called classical music have to be packaged this way!?)

But the other, alternate stream, which they call Q2, presents “500 years of new music”.  And what you can hear here is quite impressive. Here’s the list of what they’ve played so far today: playlist for 12/31

I don’t know who is programming Q2, but they’re doing a great job. Quite a mix of always interesting and unusual music. So I’ve taken to running the Q2 stream at our house these days. Since I mainly work from home, it’s on nearly all the time (I have replaced the FM tuner in my sound system with a laptop running Ubuntu Linux and streaming internet radio).

There are now a good handful of streams to listen to on the internet. Pandora, of course, is still a major resource. It’s great for Jazz and general popular music, but it’s classical library, while still growing, has problems, like too many repeated plays, and not playing an entire work but just single tracks, which makes mince meat of most music.

There’s also CounterStream from the American Music Center which plays a lot of music by composers and performers I’ve never heard of, which is good.

And, there’s sfSound Radio, a local stream of very experimental music, that is always surprising.

But I’m really enjoying Q2.

When I was growing up in New York (1950′s), WQXR, WNYC, WKCR, WNCN, WBAI, were all resources for hearing great music. WQXR eventually declined to become more of a “lifestyle” station, selling the stuff that seems to go with “classical music”. But that’s where I got my musical education. And it’s latest reincarnation, via WNYC, is a blessing.

By the way, the iTunes URL for the Q2 stream is

Happy listening.

Dankgesang – For The New Year To Come

The song of holy thanks on recovering good health, in the Lydian mode, from Beethoven’s A minor quartet, #15, opus 132 (1825). At the time LvB was completely deaf, and could hear only his own imagination.

I put this here as a source for contemplation on the year ending, and the year to be. May we all recover good health in 2010.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

My First Car … was a SAAB

So today I do have something to blog about, so I’ll come out of hibernation for a few minutes.

I read this morning in the »NY Times that SAAB cars have come to an end.

My very first car was a »SAAB 96. That was in 1969:

My SAAB 96

I had bought it used from someone in Berkeley. I think it cost me $800. And I drove it all over. Even to Baja.

My SAAB 96

I loved this car. Not only because it was my very first car, but it fit me very well. And, it was cranky. A two-stroke, three-cylinder engine with a flywheel, you had to put oil in the gas tank before you put in gas, which baffled most garage attendants .. “Are you sure you want to do that?…”  (These were the days before self-serve.) Especially when I drove off in a puff of blue smoke.

My SAAB 96

When I arrived in Berkeley from New York City in 1968, I really didn’t know how to drive. I bought the car in ’69 with a friend. I had a learner’s permit, and he taught me how do drive it in the parking lot at Golden Gate Fields (how many people learned to drive in that parking lot?!).  I was 25 and up to then all I had was a motor scooter.

I had the 96 until 1973, when I sold it before moving to London for a year. And when I was in London, I bought a similar car there, altho  it was a newer V4 model and used regular gas. I sold that one when I left London and returned to Berkeley in 1974. And back home I bought a used SAAB station wagon. The first of two, I think.  I’ve had many cars, mostly old used clunkers. But that old 96 was always my favorite.

Once, in 1970, I drove down to San Diego, and on the trip back up to Berkeley the engine froze up on the freeway. I was able to coast to the next off ramp and stopped by the side of the road to call AAA. Amazingly there was a SAAB repair place nearby (I forget where .. someplace north of SD). I had to leave it there and it took almost a month to get it back after they replaced the engine. They were able to find a replacement!

Somewhere in the 70′s SAAB stopped making practical cars and went for the high end, competing with BMW and the rest. I lost interest. My first new car was a Honda, followed by many Toyotas, and finally my current VW Eurovan Camper. I never got the car lust, like my southern California wife. To me a car is just a tool, a mechanical necessity. But sometimes I wish I still had that 96, blue smoke and all.

So yet another memorial, but this time to a car company. RIP SAAB.

It’s Hibernation Time

I’m finding it harder and hard to find things to blog about. At least just now. This is the part of the year I tend to hibernate .. roll the rock in front of the opening and move to the back of the cave.

Maybe I’ll think of something, but don’t expect much for a few weeks, ’til the whole thing blows over and the sun returns.

Season’s greeting.

Cruelest Month

December is turning out to be the cruelest month.

We’ve already been stunned with:

Thomas Hoving, Remaker of the Met, Dies at 78

Mr. Hoving transformed the Metropolitan Museum of Art during his tumultuous decade-long tenure as director.

Stephen Toulmin, a Philosopher and Educator, Dies at 87

Mr. Toulmin was an influential philosopher who conducted inquiries into ethics, science and moral reasoning and developed a new approach to analyzing arguments.

Paul A. Samuelson, Economist, Dies at 94

Paul A. Samuelson, the first American Nobel laureate in economics and the foremost academic economist of the 20th century, died Sunday at his home in Belmont, Mass.

Now comes the word that local photographer Larry Sultan has passed away

Larry Sultan

Larry Sultan, California Photographer, Dies at 63

Mr. Sultan was a highly influential California photographer whose 1977 collaboration, “Evidence” became a watershed in the history of art photography.


Cruel month, indeed.


Other Minds Festival 15 – March 4-6

Other Minds 15

Cowell 1925  
Gyan Riley  

Other Minds, in cooperation with the Djerassi Resident Artists Program, the Eugene and Elinor Friend Center for the Arts of the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, and the Polish Cultural Institute in New York, is proud to announce that the following artists will be featured at the 15th Other Minds Music Festival (OM 15), March 4-6, 2010, in San Francisco.

Natasha Barrett (Norway)
Lisa Bielawa
Chou Wen-chung (China/USA)
Jürg Frey (Switzerland)
Tom Johnson (France)
Kidd Jordan (USA)
Carla Kihlstedt (USA)
Pawel Mykietyn (Poland)
Gyan Riley (USA)

This year’s Festival will bring to the Bay Area three highly influential senior composers:

* Perhaps the first modern Chinese composer to emigrate to the US, Chou Wen-chung became the founder of a movement for contemporary Chinese music, and counted among his students Zhou Long, Chen Yi, Tan Dun, Bright Sheng, Ge Gan-ru (OM 9), and Chinary Ung (OM 14).

* Kidd Jordan of New Orleans organized the first World Saxophone Quartet, and in 2005 received knighthood from the Republic of France.

* From 1972 to 1982, composer Tom Johnson was also one of the most influential new music critics in the US, writing brilliant reviews for the Village Voice of emerging “other minds” of the day such as Frederic Rzewski (OM 3), Pauline Oliveros (OM 8), La Monte Young (OM 3), Meredith Monk (OM 1), Philip Glass (OM 1), and Paul Dresher (OM 4).

These new music stalwarts will be joined by local talents Gyan Riley and Carla Kihlstedt, Bay Area ex-pat Lisa Bielawa, Switzerland’s radical minimalist Jürg Frey, Poland’s rising star, Pawel Mykietyn, and Natasha Barrett, an electroacoustic and acousmatic sound installation composer from Norway. Performers will include ROVA Saxophone Quartet, Quatuor Bozzini, the Del Sol String Quartet, and Eva-Maria Zimmermann (piano).

Linux and Ham Radio

Linux Journal

The January 2010 issue of Linux Journal is devoted to Ham Radio!


There’s a lot of software out there for amateur radio applications. But up to now most of it has been for Windows PCs. Which is strange, because amateur radio is really about doing things yourself, outside the box. For which Linux and the whole Open Source movement seems a natural. In fact, the lead article in the January issue of Linux Journal calls amateur radio the “first open source project”.


I just hope more ham radio software migrates over to Linux. I hate seeing some really exciting ham radio apps offered Windows-only. More and more apps are appearing for the Mac, which also seems more natural than Windows.


For example there are some really good apps for learning and exercising Morse Code. But most of the best are still on the PC/Windows. So I have to keep one system around with Win/XP just to run those apps. This is silly. I bet if the apps were written in Java they could run on any system.


Lets see more Linux apps out there.

Bookstore Moves to Survive

One of my favorite bookstores, Elliot Bay Books in Seattle, is NOT closing (phew!). It’s just moving across town.

As we watch some iconic bookstores fail and close, it’s encouraging to hear that some are doing better than can be expected.

Here’s the whole story from the owner, Peter Aaron:

December 10, 2009

      After many weeks of speculation about the future of The Elliott Bay Book Company, I am now able to confirm that the book store will be moving to a new location on Capitol Hill in the spring of next year.

      The past two years have been a difficult, painful period of exploring and evaluating possibilities in an attempt to determine what would be best—and necessary—to ensure the long-term health and vitality of the store. And while the thought, and the practicalities, of moving from the site and the locale which have been home for the past 36 years are daunting to say the least, I am convinced that this upcoming relocation will afford us the best opportunity to remain, and further develop as a thriving enterprise….

Read the rest on the Elliot Bay Books website ->

We wish them the best of luck!


Hard to believe, but I just finished producing the 200th MUSIC FROM OTHER MINDS program and put it in the mail to KALW across the bay in San Francisco for Friday’s broadcast (December 11, 11pm PST KALW 91.7).

Little did I know when we started this series on KALW in January 2005 that it would go this far. So here we are, about to begin our fifth year!

It’s still fun. And I’m still discovering new music.

Friday’s program features some releases from 2009, and starts with a preview of a release that will be available in January from Michigan-based OgreOgress – a premiere recording and first radio broadcast of the Bardo Sonata by Alan Hovhaness, performed by Paul Hersey. And there’s also music by Ingram Marshall, David Simons, Christopher Roberts, and Morton Feldman.


So far we’ve broadcast over 600 pieces of music from nearly 250 composers:

John Luther Adams, Peter Adriaansz, Charles Amirkhanian, Beth Anderson, George Antheil, Mark Applebaum, Larry Austin, Richard Ayres, Milton Babbitt, Alexander Balanescu, Billy Bang, Jean Barraqué, David Beardsley, Dan Becker, David Behrman, Barbara Benary, Cathy Berberian, Luciano Berio, Johanna Beyer, Iva Bittová, Marc Blitzstein, Mark Blitzstein, David Borden, Pierre Boulez, Tim Brady, Henry Brant, Martin Bresnick, Chris Brown, Earle Brown, Galen Brown, Ryan Brown, Gavin Bryars, Michael Byron, John Cage, Cesar Camarero, Edmund Campion, Elliott Carter, Friedrich Cerha, Philip Corner, Mildred Couper, Henry Cowell, Rick Cox, Ruth Crawford, Alvin Curran, Roland Dahinden, Maria DeAlvear, Eric de, Donnacha Dennehy, Dennis DeSantis, Francis Dhomont, Kui Dong, William Duckworth, John Duncan, Henri Dutilleux, Julius Eastman, Brian Eno, Robert Erickson, Daniel David, Morton Feldman, Luc Ferrari, Michael Jon, Gordon Fitzell, Jim Fox, Dominic Frasca, Fred Frith, Ellen Fullman, Kyle Gann, Peter Garland, Anthony Genge, Philip Glass, Vladimir Godar, Manuel Goettsching, Malcom Goldstein, Daniel Goode, Michael Gordon, Gerard Grisey, Sofia Gubaidulina, Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen, Barry Guy, Lars-Petter Hagen, Cristobal Halffter, Frode Haltli, Mark Hand, Lou Harrison, Michael Harrison, Lejaren Hiller, Hirokazu Hiraishi, Christopher Hobbs, Heinz Holliger, Bryan Hollon, Eleanor Hovda, Alan Hovhaness, Melissa Hui, Charles Ives, Richard James, Leos Janacek, Dobromila Jaskot, Joan Jeanrenaud, Ben Johnston, Klaus Jorgensen, Dan Joseph, Mauricio Kagel, Elena Kats-Chernin, Mari Kimura, Guy Klucevsek, Charles Koechlin, Jo Kondo, Drew Krause, Hanna Kulenty, György Kurtag, David Lang, Thomas Larcher, Elodie Lauten, Daniel Lentz, Tania León, Arthur Levering, Jorge Liderman, György Ligeti, Pierre-Yves Mace, Bruno Maderna, David Mahler, Keeril Makan, Philippe Manoury, Tigran Mansurian, Igor Markevitch, Ingram Marshall, Steve Martland, Janis Mattox, Toshiro Mayuzumi, Colin McPhee, Marc Mellits, Olivier Messiaen,  Olivier Messiaen, Chris Miller, Jeff Morris, Stephen Mosko, Marjan Mozetich, Hyo-Shin Na, Conlon Nancarrow, The Necks, Olga Neuwrith, Phill Niblock, Per Nørgård, Michael Nyman, Pauline Oliveros, Erik Ona, Leo Ornstein, Hans Otte, Gerard Pape, Arvo Pärt, Harry Partch, Gerard Pesson, Steve Peters, Larry Polansky, Jonathan Pontier, Wendy Prezament, Alwynne Pritchard, Serge Prokofiev, John Prokop, Horatiu Radulescu, Maja Ratkje, Belinda Reynolds, Roger Reynolds, Eric Richards, Wolfgang Rihm, Terry Riley, Jean-Claude Risset, Curtis Roads, Christopher Roberts, Neil Rolnick, Ned Rorem, Daniel Bernard, Loren Rush, Jeffrey Ryan, Frederic Rzewski, Franco Saint, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Eleanor Sandresky, Somei Satoh, Giacinto Scelsi, R. Murray, Dieter Schnebel, John Schneider, Arnold Schoenberg, Phillip Schroeder, Stephen Scott, Peter Sculthorpe, Ralph Shapey, John Mark, Wayne Siegel, Valentin Silvestrov, David Simons, Charles Smith, Chas Smith, Linda Catlin, Ronald Bruce, Wadada Leo, Alessandro Solbiati, Bent Sørensen, Ann Southam, Robert W., Karlheinz Stockhausen, Markus Stockhausen, Carl Stone, Igor Stravinsky, Morton Subotnick, Mari Takano, Toru Takemitsu, Karen Tanaka, James Tenney, Michael Tenzer, Terre Thaemlitz, David Toub, Jason Treuting, Sachito Tsurumi, Erkki-Sven Tüür, Frances-Marie Uitti, Edgard Varese, Giovanni Verrando, Serge Verstockt, Claude Vivier, Kevin Volans, Zachary Watkins, Francis White, Ian Wilson, Erling Wold, Christian Wolff, Stefan Wolpe, Iannis Xenakis, Carolyn Yarnell, Chen Yi, Frank Zappa, Hervé Zénouda, Walter Zimmermann, Evan Ziporyn, Agata Zubel

(The complete list is on the website.)


Richard Friedman lives in Oakland, CA, is a freelance tech writer/editor, web designer, photographer, is a Director of Other Minds, wrote his first computer program in 1962 for the IBM 650. It played dice. He is also a ham radio (AG6RF) operator, and he also takes a lot of photographs, composes music, and does a weekly radio program on KALW called Music From Other Minds.
He is not Kinky.

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RCHRD@SUN My blog about computers, computer history, programming, and work.

Amateur Radio - AG6RF
Other Websites Worth Visiting:
Other Minds New Music
Internet Archive Entire Internet, Archived
New Music Box American Music Center
UBU WEB A Treasure of Recorded Sound, Music/Poetry!
BoingBoing A Directory of Wonderful Things

Music Blogs Worth Reading:
Kyle Gann's "PostClassic"
Miguel Frasconi, composer/performer
Overgrown Path
Sequenza 21 Forum
Alex Ross: The Rest Is Noise

Photo Blogs Worth Viewing:
mooncruise* Photo Magazine
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Nassio: NYC, etc
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Uncategorizable Yet Notable: NYC Steet Signs
Lichtensteiger: Cagean Website
Ben Katchor: Picture Stories

Internet Radio Stations:
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Kyle Gann's Postclassic
Robin Cox's Iridian Radio


What Is This?

I started All I Know in June 2004 using Pivot, and
All I Know² Second Edition, in September 2006 using Movable Type.
This is All I Know³ Third Edition, started in March 2008 using WordPress. Read more.

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