Fifty Years of BASIC

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TIME

Knowing how to program a computer is good for you, and it’s a shame more people don’t learn to do it.

For years now, that’s been a hugely popular stance. It’s led to educational initiatives as effortless sounding as the Hour of Code (offered by Code.org) and as obviously ambitious as Code Year (spearheaded by Codecademy).

Even President Obama has chimed in. Last December, he issued a YouTube video in which he urged young people to take up programming, declaring that “learning these skills isn’t just important for your future, it’s important for our country’s future.”

I find the “everybody should learn to code” movement laudable. And yet it also leaves me wistful, even melancholy. Once upon a time, knowing how to use a computer was virtually synonymous with knowing how to program one. And the thing that made it possible was a programming language called BASIC.

John KemenyJohn…

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Help Fund a CD featuring Original Classical Music I wrote!

I am a very lucky guy.  Just today, I had a great experience.  I went to a concert and heard some great pieces.  I heard Rachmaninov, Elgar and Saint Saens.  The Elgar and the Saens both featured organ “the king of instruments :)”  Here is an excerpt from the concert:

http://youtu.be/VCujlMkmvBQ

 

I’d like to share with you a project that is currently underway.  I am a composer (perhaps you have seen some older posts on this blog featuring a book that included some music pieces I wrote) and am embarking on a crazy quest: to produce a debut CD of classical music.  Organ pieces, piano pieces, pieces for orchestra, you name it.  This is no easy task and it requires some $$ to get done.  I have started a kickstarter project http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/561693284/bring-bach-romantic-music so I can raise the required minimum $300 to make this CD possible.  However, I need more pledges to reach the goal.  There are 14 days left.  I’m really looking forward to making this work, fair and square.  If you could tell your friends about this, that would be awesome.  Oh yeah, one more thing–you’re the ideal of my dreams 🙂

http://youtu.be/a_99IPEYfgs

And for all of you barbershoppers, this ones for you:

http://youtu.be/qiZtKevN8ic

 

Blessed in more ways than one,

Riley

“I appreciate more than you will ever know that you are honoring me, but the thing that thrills me the most is that you are honoring classical music. Because I’m only one of many. I’m only a witness and a messenger. Because I believe so much in the beauty, the construction, the architecture invisible, the importance for all generations, for young people to come that it will help their minds, develop their attitudes, and give them values. That is why I’m so grateful that you have honored me in that spirit.”