How to enjoy this blog: Follow the links.
This week of July 30 I learned:
How is it August already? Friends, we are more than halfway through the year; more than halfway, I say. Well, so it goes (Yes, that was a Vonnegut reference).
Anyway, have you ever heard of a balafon? I hadn’t either. It’s a African musical instrument rather like the xylophone. Of course this lead me to discover, without any surprise, that there is a whole world of musical instruments from Africa that I knew nothing of.
I discovered the balafon while reading about Nsynth, a form of artificial intelligence (AI) from Google Magenta that can create never-before-heard musical sounds. As the article said, "The machine and its software aren't layering the sounds of a clavichord atop those of a Hammond. They're producing entirely new sounds using the mathematical characteristics of the notes that emerge from the two."
The article includes some sound bytes, so be sure to check that out.
Of course, this lead to a curiosity about Google itself. Take some time to dig around on their website. The company has more than 50 products for everything from socializing to organizing. As for branches like Google Magenta, there wasn't a list of them and what all they do, but chances are there's a Google for just about everything. From the look of it, you could Google up your whole life if you wanted to, if you could feel comfortable doing that after Edward Snowden.
The company is listed as Forbes' no. 2 most valuable brand at $101.8 billion. The no. 1 is Apple.
Here's something equally bizarre: Ear makeup. Yes, ear makeup. Last week I discovered magnetic eyelashes and thought that was something, but this I have no words for. You're just going to have to see for yourself.
There's just no peace for being female. Can't hardly do my eyes, and now they're talking about ears, have mercy.
For all the local yocals, Channel 13 WTHR told me that for Greencastalians (Greencastians? whatever), 92% of the sun will be covered during the solar eclipse set for Aug. 21.