DTMF decoder in Pd

Wed Nov 25 2015 11:15:01 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: dtmf pd puredata dialing

I was doing some digital housekeeping recently and came across an unfinished DTMF decoder that I started in Pd.  DTFM is also commonly known as "touch tone" and is a signaling system traditionally used over telephony systems (and things like ham radio repeaters).  I opened up the patch and found that it wasn't working quite right, so I tinkered and made something usable/releasable.

The help patch above shows decoding from a recording, live from the computers audio input (mic), and also from a fake DTMF dialpad that I made (which also uses my [dtmf~] abstraction).  If you're watching a movie or listening to the radio and hear some gold old-fashioned touch tones, you can now decode the digits using this Pd abstraction.  Good times.

Back in the 90s, I built several DTMF decoder circuits by hand, some that even interfaced wiht the computer's parallel port for logging.  Wow, that was a long time ago.  If you hunt around, I suppose you can still find DTMF decoder ICs, but they're certainly becoming harder to find.  I guess these days, it makes sense to use the $2000 general-purpose computer on your desk/lap to do that work instead of $10 in parts.  :-)

You can download this DTMF decoder (as well as my other DTMF related pd abstractions) over at my github repo:  Let me know if you find them useful!

Anish Kapoor "Descent into Limbo"

Wed Nov 18 2015 22:13:02 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: art documenta

I was in Kassel, Germany in 1992 for Documenta IX and had my brain melted by the sheer volume of amazing art.  As a teenager/young-adult, this was really my first opportunity to explore the art world in any meaningful way.  That experience of wandering around the galleries and discovering works and artists...learning about conceptual, contemporary, video/film, mixed-media and conceptual art had a powerfully profound and long-lasting impact on me as a person.

Whenever I think about this time, I almostly always think back to Anish Kapoor's "Descent Into Limbo".


The viewer enters a small concrete/stucco room in which there is a large black circle in the center of the floor.  Otherworldly/surreal lighting fills the space (was it electronic? natural? something else?), but the circle is the focus of attention.  What's so special about this?  Why do I care about this circle?  Wait?  What is it?  Is it a carpet or a mat or a flat form...or wait, maybe it has depth?  Maybe it's a hole.  Why can't I see it!?  What does it want from me?  We're a little scared and nobody seems to want to get close to it.  It has no edge/lip and there certainly is no bottom.  It's perfect darkness, or darkness perfected (I can't tell which).

Anish's site has some drawings that explain it in more detail.  I sometimes wonder if it's still there, haunting the ground in Kassel.

"They Live" mask build page

Sat Nov 14 2015 22:19:59 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: halloween theylive roddypiper johncarpenter obey


created a build page for the "They Live" mask I made for Halloween 2015.  Check it out here.

Marty McFly introduces 1955 to harsh noise

Fri Nov 13 2015 22:15:39 GMT-0800 (Pacific Standard Time)

tags: reblog noise backtothefuture

I have a superpower

Tue Aug 11 2015 22:26:14 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: superpower comics

I discovered that I have a super-human superpower.  It's a lame superpower, but I'm amused by it nonetheless.  At first, I thought it was mere coincidence or accident, but after several keen observations over the course of several months, I have very much connvinced myself that it is real.


My superpower is the ability to grab the exact number of pre-bagged comic book backing boards to match the number of new unbagged comic books that I just bought.  I don't have to count them in advance...I don't count the books nor do I count the bags,  I just reach into the stash and grab some boards and bags and it always turns out that I have pulled out the perfect number.  My superhuman fingers simply flip thru the stash until the the amount inexplicably feels right, and BAM, it's spot on!

So there it is.

RIP Don Joyce

Sat Aug 01 2015 11:11:33 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: negativland donjoyce rip

I guess this happened about a week ago, but I just learned that Don Joyce (of Negativland and Over The Edge [radio program on KPFA]) has passed away at the age of 71.


Don Joyce was an innovator, a rebellious sonic prankster, and a true inspiration.  He will be missed.

Archives of "Over the Edge" can be heard at the KPFA archives:

And at

Synth noise test

Wed Jul 15 2015 21:25:08 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: synth eurorack noise synthesizer circuit

Trying out the whopping 4 modules I have installed...

Seen in Portland

Mon Jul 06 2015 20:11:22 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: pdx portland graffiti stencil

Sidewalk graffiti in PDX.


A hummingbird nest

Sun Apr 26 2015 23:10:03 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: nature hummingbird

Have you ever seen inside a hummingbird's nest?  I hadn't either, until I discovered this little one in our street-side tree.  It's only about 2.5" across, and when the mother hummingbird sits inside she fills the whole thing.  I risked the fatal dive of a needle-beak long enough to raise my aging camera phone above my head to see what was inside....


Check out how camouflaged it is!  It's so tiny, you really wouldn't even know it was there.  I can't even imagine what a hummingbird hatchling looks like, and I refuse to google it.  Your move, springtime.

Archaeoacoustic analysis in Eastern Serbia

Tue Apr 07 2015 22:49:41 GMT-0700 (Pacific Daylight Time)

tags: acoustics sound listening

Super interesting read about some archaeoacoustic research in Serbia:

(via mediateletipos)

There's only a single sound clip available right now, but the effect is pretty mesmerizing.  It's wild to imagine ancient people performing sacrificial blood rituals while bathed in this soundscape.