Category Archives: notes

Things Always Changing

It’s funny how fast time goes: one minute, you’re on top of all your passwords, plans, and dev environments… and in the next minute, you’re forgetting passwords, plans, and how you set up those dodgy dev environments years ago.

For example, I just recently noticed that one of my old Python-related projects was no longer working (after a fairly recent server change). After looking into the problem, I end up finding out that I need to upgrade my local virtualenv environment. So I navigate to my environment folder… and realize that I have absolutely no documentation from when I last set up this particular environment. Oops.

There is help out there, though, with potential answers to these types of issues.

To fix this particular issue (and for my personal reference, at least,) I ended up taking the following steps to get things up and running:

  1. Back up your virtualenv directory before doing anything else. (Note: This process is more of a fresh-install than an upgrade… running the command will possibly take away old packages…)
  2. Re-create the virtualenv directory by using the following command:
    $ /path/to/system/default/virtualenv /path/to/your/environment/directory
  3. Then, update individual packages as needed:
    $ pip install package-name-here

Now there’s some documentation for next time…

Calling of Simon Mixing Notes

With the mixing of Calling of Simon, I’ve been trying to branch out into different mixing techniques (“different” as in: not trying to hide the mix in a glossy, mid-range mess…)

These techniques have involved:

  • using delay and reverb for vocals (rather than relying on a channel strip preset)
  • cutting out low end frequencies from the reverb-saturated piano
  • cutting out boomy low end frequencies from the bass
  • breaking up the drum group track into individual drum tracks

But I’ve faced problems with:

  • finding mysterious frequencies that hurt my ears (and these might be caused by unnecessarily-boosted mid-range EQ frequencies… but still trying to locate the source)
    • helped: by using a compressor/gate on the master aux to act as a “catch-all” for any harsh frequencies missed in the individual tracks
  • flattening the vocals… how do the pros do this?
    • helped: by using a compressor/gate to help with smoothing out the vocals
    • helped: by panning the vocals to hard left and hard right to take away the “in-your-face” aspect of the vocals and allow the vocals to sit better in the mix
    • still need to add more automation for the loud parts of this song, though… and find a way to cut out the light distortion happening from the mid-range vocals eq… (might try out different attack settings with the compressor, too.)
  • taming the high-end EQ of the drums without making the drums sound like they are being played in a bit-crushed cave

Online Dev

As much as I hate to talk about tech/programming… just wanted to note that I’ve been using Nitrous.IO to develop a Rails application for a database class… and it’s been great! Nitrous.IO is some sort of virtualized server/IDE for developing applications via a web browser; pretty convenient!

But, as for anything, I’m not sure if I’d be willing to use this type of service for more than anything non-essential (because of questions related to overall security, reliability, and backup plans…) but I can definitely see browser-based coding becoming the way people develop web and mobile applications in the near future.

The local machine, no longer.

rsync notes

This isn’t necessarily the best way to use rsync… but here is a fairly simple (uneducated) way of getting two-way communication going between a source and backup host.


  1. Generate keys on source-host: ssh-keygen -t rsa (or ssh-keygen -t dsa)
  2. Copy source-host public key to backup-host using ssh-copy-id1:
    ssh-copy-id -i backup-user@backup-host
  3. Generate keys on backup-host: ssh-keygen -t rsa
  4. Copy backup-host public key to source-host using ssh-copy-id:
    ssh-copy-id -i source-user@source-host
  5. Make sure ssh-agent is installed and running on backup-host.2
  6. Use ssh-add to add key to ssh-agent on backup-host3.
  7. Finally, run rsync on backup-host:
    rsync -avz -e ssh source-user@source-host:/path/for/backup/source backup_to_here


  1. From this article. (I ended up making these keys for the opposite servers… for example: creating public key on source server is actually meant to be put into backup server authorized_keys file… and creating public key on backup server is actually meant to be put into source server authorized_keys file.)
  2. From ssh-agent article. (source)
  3. If ssh-add doesn’t seem to work, try running this in the shell: eval `ssh-agent`. (source)
  4. On Mac OS X, I seemed to have to run rsync in a new session before I got the pop-up dialog box asking if I’d like to remember this ssh passphrase in the Keychain Access utility.

See Also: