Sunday, August 12, 2007

Throttling back

Believe it or not, I've done very little flying lately, even though I have had the usual trickle supply of free time. Another hobby has started to demand more time. This is my first love, music. I am a classical guitarist, and have played at varying levels of intensity for more than 25 years. Having kids cut way into practice time, and for quite a while I hardly played at all. Recently, though, I've started playing duets with a couple of different folks and that has re-lit the spark.

Part of the "problem" is that I have found a number of different ways to use the computer for this other hobby. This has opened up whole new avenues. For example, I have been dabbling a bit using an open-source music typesetting program called Lilypond. An example of the work I've been doing is in the screenshot below. This is a movement from a Mozart piano sonata that I am adapting for guitar duet.

Lilypond is a fantastic product, and if any of my readers share my interest in music you may want to check it out. The learning curve is a bit steep, but a great help is available in a plug-in for the open source text editor jEdit (it's called lilypond tools). Then there's Audacity, an open-source multi-track recording software...

But this is a flightsim blog, so I will cut the digression there. The thing of interest here is that I have actually found myself with a block of free time, the simulator up and running, and yet a little voice in my head is saying "wouldn't you rather finish working on that score?". So, control-C, Yes, and I'm off working on the other hobby. Can you believe this actually happened during the flight in which I captured that beautiful image below?

Of course, this is how normal people live. But its a little disturbing for the flightsim fanatic. The magic is gone! Well, yes and no. I'm sure I'll keep simming, and I'm sure I will develop new fascinations with various parts of the simming hobby, but for now it's going to get a bit less time from me. Keep checking back here, because I will try to update at least once a week, and you never know when something will draw me back in full throttle.

No comments: