Friday, December 31, 2010

Information is Beautiful go animated

I gave my pops the Information is Beautiful book for chrimbo, so we had some fun perusing it, finding fault with things we know a little about, and being flabbergasted by those of which we know nought. It's a great book to have around and very engaging - I think its interesting and valuable to see the myriad ways in which datasets can be visualised and interpreted, and that this can be as subjective as any other artform. But as data becomes increasingly open to all we need more and varied 'information designers' interpreting that data.

Anyway, David McCandless, author of said book has just posted some rather good wee animations that make the topic of UK spending yet more interesting, if that's possible..

Happy New Year When It Comes!

Friday, December 03, 2010

Go Team

There's a new Go Team album out in the new year and they've been playing the first track (T.O.R.N.A.D.O) on 6music the last few days. The sample was bugging me, then I realised today it's an Antibalas track. Check it out!


Thursday, December 02, 2010


Originally uploaded by Spherical Roy
Craiglinn, Cumbernauld

Monday, November 29, 2010

An evening in

A rare thing currently, and I have learnt three things:

  1. I am a hopeless and unashamed Radiohead nut. And there are millions others out there, some of whom assemble pages full of amusing 'head philosophy. And despite having the whole catalogue to choose from, I increasingly tend to go back to half-known tracks off How Am I Driving and Pablo Honey (namely Thinking About You). What a sentimental fool.
  2. The Metropolitan Police seem unable to grasp that the nature of the web makes denying that you charged at protesters on horseback, pointless. And not knowing that your subordinates did, inexcusable.
  3. And finally, without Bad Science keeping a keen eye out for statistical pitfalls, I may have missed the survey that found that on average, as people get older, they get older. Priceless.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Shaun Ryder/Grandpa Simpson?

Via Guy Garvey on 6music. Is Shaun Ryder actually Grandpa Simpson? Listen here about 40 seconds in.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Oh to have co-workers to kill.

Which might seem like a harsh title for a post were it not in response to this:

Flying Lotus - Kill Your Co-Workers from Warp Records on Vimeo.

Alternatively: "What happens when one of my fave animators makes a video for one of my fave musicians? A CGI bloodbath in this case."

I was gently chastised yesterday by Brother Neel (as only brothers can) for writing that he described as 'terse': In my mind I have simply been reducing the mass of information we are increasingly expected to deal with, but I concur that this may have been at the cost of quality entertainment here at the Slog. Thankfully Dr. Dawg (that's right, DOCTOR) is reliably verbose (when he's not writing theses).

So, some further nuggets:
1. Kill Your Co-workers to me is another installment of wonderfully confident video game tinged upstep from Flying Lotus, whose faultlessly well appointed album Cosmogramma has been on repeat in the studio before and will be again.
2. I have complained to the unresponsive ears of the Facebook feed before about 6music's inability to count the members of Flying Lotus (one).
3. I am unreliably informed that Mr. Lotus is the great-nephew of the late Alice Coltrane and John Coltrane.
4. Beeple first came to my attention for drumming reasons with this CG folly.
5. I suspect Mr. B. Eeple may have come across Kritchard's robotic kreations before, and if not, should do.

To return to the title, a large part of the reason I have stopped blogging in general so much is that I have been in search of co-workers, indeed work of any kind, but co-workers in particular would be nice. I have come across some in Dundee, in Brian and Hamish, and indeed at the Studios, but would still on the whole prefer to be one of a full-time design team and to have a more steady, sensible working routine. This is such that I can a) preserve my sanity, b) actually make a living rather than scrape a survival, and c) have more time for making things and not talking about making things (or at least talk about it in the sense of analysis rather than marketing). The whole reason I'm in this untenable position is due to the addiction that is semi-professional musicianship of course. But I think a happy life/work/music (NB. music = life NOR work) balance is still possible with the support of the right others.


this has been a post by ROY and took MORE THAN AN HOUR. geez.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Illuminating, on Type

A good Guardian read, extracted from Just My Type: A book about fonts, by Simon Garfield


Wednesday, October 06, 2010


As they say, if you weren't there, you missed yourself (which doesn't make any sense as a saying I know, but it's not for the first time).

N_ILK: Loops Haunt - Radiohead refix, Hurache and Rubber Sun Grenade remix from Paul Gault on Vimeo.

N_ILK: Inspector Tapehead - A Fillet of Bozo & WCMJ from Paul Gault on Vimeo.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I'm Comic Sans, Asshole

For all you typography geeks.

by Gareth via Steve W.

Friday, September 03, 2010

Ahoy me hearties

Follow Pa johnson on his round britain sailing adventure here... In his words:
"Since my unfortunate M.I. earlier this month, I’ve decided to complete my rehab by sailing non-stop around Britain, anticlockwise, leaving tomorrow (Tuesday 31st August). My friend, Keith Patrick and I, will leave from Dunoon marina in the Holy Loch at about 5pm and expect to take around 17 days.
We will publish a blog at as and when we have a mobile and internet connection – please feel free to leave comments there or to my alternative email address if you wish.
The passage plan takes us down the Irish sea, around the Scilly Isles, up the English Channel, the North Sea to above Shetland, out to St. Kilda and, depending on time & weather either back through the North Channel or round the south of Eire and back up the Irish sea to Whitehaven."

Sunday, August 29, 2010

David McCandless (Information is Beautiful) on TED

TheSlog favourite David McCandless gave a TED talk recently - its great to hear him explain some of his visualisations and how he got into doing them. Thanks to Georgey for first pointing out his blog.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Inspector Tapehead's album crawls into the ether!

But where can I buy it?


Will it come with any hand crafted Roy typography?


What's it like writing the numbers 1 to 300 and the number 300 300 times in 2 hours?

Surprisingly OK!

So what's the album like?

Surprisingly OK!

Is there an expertly timed video for promotional purposes only?

Roy is in good spirits.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Garden EP by dBass - you got yours?

Just a wee reminder that the dBass EP is available now via Bandcamp..

Monday, June 07, 2010

If it was my home

A scary tool that shows you how big the gulf oil spill would be if it was centered on your home.


Thursday, June 03, 2010

New pics up

Have had an evening of sorting through photos and as such have updated my Flickr for the first time in a while! Too much to talk about but shall list the sets:
Homegame, Whitehills windfarm, Edale, Scope, Love Calculator, Dundee, Dumfries and Galloway before Christmas, and even Paris!

Here's one at random:

I am Roy.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Haarfest announced.

Fence Records News � Haarfest!

Fence's Haarfest festival has been announced for Monday 16th to Saturday 21st of August, and as a pleasant surprise confirmation to me, features both Inspector Tapehead, and a certain Jon Rogers and pals of Product Design in Dundee. Good times.


Sunday, May 30, 2010

Allotment tonight

This is very late, having done one of these gigs already, but allow me to publicise tonight's performance of Allotment 4 at least.

NTS say:

Produced by Angie Bual and Caroline Newall, the final Allotment offers an alternative night out by embracing cyberspace and the phenomena of social networking. An artistic take on websites including Facebook, MySpace and My Single Friend, Allotment will bring virtual networking experiences to life. Through live music, art and performance, the final Allotment experience will enable punters to reclaim the art of conversation, make new friends and take part in some dating games. As the night unfolds, three secret locations will also be brought in to the mix.

I say, I would never dream on basing a piece of musical work on a website, so can't really back up that statement! Fergus and I are, however, interested in the social dynamics of immprovisation, and as such we are putting on a version of Scope, the jam session where visual and musical improv coalesce. Following the practices we did last summer, this idea has come to fruition in a modified form, with Inspector Tapehead forming the core band. There are three 20minute sessions throughout the night, each time with the lineup including a different guest musician and visual artist. So at Allotment we can offer you:

Fergus Dunnet
Inspector Tapehead (Jonnie Common, Chris Croasdale and me, Roy)
Stuart Macpherson (dbass/JSS/formerly of Engine)
Justin Eade (Glimpse)
George Murray (dBass/One Ensemble/GIO)
Aby Vulliamy (One Ensemble/Nalle)
Jenny Soep (Drawing the experience)
and last night we had the percussive prowess of Peter Kelly (Moon Unit/ formerly of Galchen).

Check out this link for the event info, it's in Govancross Shopping Centre from 8pm tonight and last night was a corker.


Mr. Murphy on the Shanghai Expo

entschwindet und vergeht: Shanghai Expo - Armchair Review!

I think it is safe to say that Murphy is the only person capable of writing an architecture review that makes me laugh out loud.

That might have been read as it being the quality of his writing that is laughable, but I must stress that is not the case: it's purely the wit. Read it, chump.


A picture of my favourite pavilion follows..

Hoho. Seriously though, the Danes win hands down:

Friday, May 28, 2010

Janelle Monáe - Tightrope - Late Show with David Letterman

This just has to be seen to be believed! I wish I was in her band..


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Eyjafjallaj�kull and Maths Sculpture � Maxwell’s Demon

Eyjafjallaj�kull and Maths Sculpture � Maxwell’s Demon

On the topic of that volcano..

Found this great image while surfing on the topic of hexayurts: mathematician Edmund Harriss, who has an interesting blog here, and has done some new layouts for hexayurts.

What the real big society means for the economy, charities and copyright

Two excellent mini docs just posted to the Guardian videostream from Heydon Prowse and William Pine:

These make essential viewing in my opinion, if only to come some some way to understanding where I'm coming from: ie. spending my time and earnings on the sometimes seemingly pointless area of open design. Its the empowerment stupid.


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

the coalition on CCS

What do certain sloggers make of this extract from our new government's new manifesto?

• The establishment of an emissions performance standard that will prevent coal-fired power stations being built unless they are equipped with sufficient CCS to meet the emissions performance standard

• Continuation of the present government's proposals for public sector investment in CCS technology for four coal-fired power stations; and a specific commitment to reduce central government carbon emissions by 10% within 12 months.

We are agreed that we would seek to increase the target for energy from renewable sources, subject to the advice of the climate change committee.

Liberal Democrats have long opposed any new nuclear construction. Conservatives, by contrast, are committed to allowing the replacement of existing nuclear power stations provided they are subject to the normal planning process for major projects (under a new national planning statement) and provided also that they receive no public subsidy.

We have agreed a process that will allow Liberal Democrats to maintain their opposition to nuclear power while permitting the government to bring forward the national planning statement for ratification by parliament so that new nuclear construction becomes possible.

This process will involve:

• The government completing the drafting of a national planning statement and putting it before parliament

• Specific agreement that a Liberal Democrat spokesman will speak against the planning statement, but that Liberal Democrat MPs will abstain; and clarity that this will not be regarded as an issue of confidence.

My questions: is this wildly different to current policy? And what on earth do the last paragraphs mean in practical terms??


Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Delightful exhibit on at the British Library until September: Magnificent Maps: Power, Propaganda and Art. For those that haven't figured it out yet, yes I am a map addict, but bias aside, I love this map. Click through to explore...


Sunday, May 02, 2010

Enez myspace up

The demo for Enez is now up on myspace here, we'll be doing our second performance ever at Moniaive Folk Festival on the 8th May. All comments welcomed..

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Climate Tricks - Update

Well 2009 is truly over so I thought I'd update that image from the post I made pre-christmas without dropping 2009 data. Doesn't help does it? Dang. Perhaps this will become a yearly effort, that way, every new year of data I post in isolation of any trend, the greater chance I have of proving global warming stopped after 1998. Come on Eyjafjallajokull I know you want to help me out in 2010.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

How do you cut UK emissions 80%?

Nice interactive on the guardian website that allows you to play being the PM by dragging sliders to try and cut UK emissions by 80% by 2050. It also demands that you balance the electricity demand from different sources (though it is not exhaustive: no gas/coal/biomass with ccs). Anyway, I tried to do it without limiting consumption and travel. Answer, impossible. And as for flying, I'm going to climate hell...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Another fine graphic

From Mr. McCandless, brought to my attention by George, another great infographic on a rather pertinent topic..

Friday, April 16, 2010

Aural Dispatch

Some new Canadian indie finds from a recent Jason Collett gig. Collett was good but I was equally, if not more, impressed by sometimes Feist band-member Afie Jurvanen recording as Bahamas and the Collett backing band in and of themselves, Zeus, were a joy to listen too.

Good gig.


Malcolm's Missives

Is anyone reading Malcolm Tuckers Election Briefing over at the graun? Singularly the best take on the election I've read...

With props to the real Malcolm: Jesse Armstrong.


Thursday, April 15, 2010

three happenings in three days

1. Love Calculator @ The Forest Fringe @ The Arches, Glasgow.

- Fergus Dunnet and Angie Bual present a machine that *will* calculate
your match, as part of this microfestival in The Arches. I'm providing
the sounds for it!
Friday and Saturday from 7.30, £10/£5. flyer here.

2. Ganghut @ GI @ Southside Studios, Glasgow.

- The southide's opening for the Glasgow International Festival of
Visual Art, with Dundee's Ganghut presenting their musical/
environmental/ performance based endeavours along with the usual
southside shenanigans.
Saturday from 7. Featuring homemade pizza, all free.
Exhibition open everyday until the 30th, when there will also be a
closing party.

3. Inspector Tapehead @ The Gentle Invasion @ The Roxy Room (formerly
The Bowery), Edinburgh.

- It's a gig. With Inspector Tapehead, Nathalie Stern and the Japanese
War Effort, Tapehead premiering some new stuff ahead of the album
release this summer.
Sunday from 7.30, £5.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Love Calculator at Forest Fringe

I have built a few wee noisemakers for an interactive piece of theatre to be part of The Forest Fringe microfestival at the Arches at the end of this week. I shall actually be in it too playing said instruments. The piece is called the Love Calculator and is amongst a whole host of other wee happenings in the festival - flyer above, tickets here


Friday, April 09, 2010

Openthing revamp

Have given Openthing a bit of a revamp this week, from the comfort of my home and the discomfort of a stomach bug. Any comments welcomed, whether they be on the site, niftymitter or open design in general.

>> Sorry, have fixed that link now. That was a bit embarrassing.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Map Envelope

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A wee bout of beeb hate


We here at theSlog are very fond of the BBC, but frankly, they seem to be putting every foot wrong these days. The latest being BBC Online coming down squarely on the 'closed' side of the open source debate. Basically their stance is, 'we like to make use of open source software but we won't give any back, and more than that, we will block anyone else from doing it for us' - and hence the excellent GET iPlayer is no more. For now at least.

Between dangling the dagger over 6music, the Asian Network, BBC Online, and now the means by which we can access most of it, I can't see how they will soon be able to claim to be a public service provider and not a commercial media network like any other. Well, at least it leaves things open for, I don't know, more open TV networks perhaps?

a cheesed off Roy.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

beeple - the work of mike winkelmann

beeple - the work of mike winkelmann

via Make, some charming wee videos, firstly this one, then that one and finally the other.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Point to C on Solid Steel

May I thoroughly and wholeheartedly recommend this most recent Point to C mix for Solid Steel? Ta:

Ninja Tune - Solid Steel Radio Show 5/3/2010 Part 3 4 - Point to C & Neotropic - SoundCloud


Monday, March 08, 2010



Friday, February 26, 2010

Robin Friend, photographer

Mr. Murphy links in his most recent post to photographer Robin Friend, with some beautifully haunting pictures such as this:

Apparently Murphy has reviewed his work in Hotshoe magazine but I can't find the article on't web on the first search, so must keep an eye out. Its so much more expensive, the whole magazine world, when you can't stand in Borders shamelessly dog-earing the periodicals. I guess that's why there are no more Borders (the shops, not the boundaries)..


Grampian Mountains

The newest link on theSlog blog (from whence these posts come, for those of you viewing this on facebook) is Grampian Mountains, the blog of Glasgow based graphic designer and disc jockey Point to C, whom I had the pleasure of meeting recently. Very tasty photos and compositions alike.. checky:


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Southside Studios opening this weekend

Merlin James / Andrew Taylor / Tom Varley

Preview - Saturday 27 February 2010 - 7pm
Southside Gallery, 17 Westmoreland Street, Govanhill, Glasgow, G42 8LL

The Show will run from 2nd March till 16th March 2010.
by appointment only, please call 077927 39788

Fun Occult - Recoat opening on Friday

Sent to you by Roy via Google Reader:

via recoat by Recoat Gallery on 19/02/10

Things you can do from here:

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Do Lectures

"The Do lectures are all about getting a handful of speakers together in one place, in the hope that they may inspire you to go Do something. To give you the tools and the desire to change the things you care about."

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Inspector Tapehead in album completion shocker.


Glasgow, UK

Hello everybody

Just writing to say that we have well and truly and utterly finished our debut album 'Duress Code'. We have given the tracks we had up [on the myspace] before a rather thorough remixing and also worked away at the fresher stuff, before getting the whole lot (ten tracks altogether) mastered by Jon Astley. We are now putting it about with some hope of getting it released in early summer. Those who have picked up an album sampler from us at a gig, containing early mixes of the first three songs we recorded, may recall us printing an original release date of 'Summer 2008'. Let us assure you all that we will never be this optimistic again.

Anyway, to mark the occasion we are putting up three tracks from the finished article. We hope that you enjoy them and we will keep you posted on any developments regarding the release.

Over and out,

Insp. Tapehead.

Gie us a shot on yer wee friendly indie label mate!

Friday, January 22, 2010

How I Met My Wife

Linked by g, words by Jack Winter.

Brilliant piece of writing on that subject of words that don't have an antipode as prompted by a tomasky blog.

It had been a rough day, so when I walked into the party I was very chalant, despite my efforts to appear gruntled and consolate...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Stirling Engine

Words by Gareth, patent by Roger Stirling.

I was introduced to the Stirling Engine last autumn and was amazed that I'd never heard of one before. What have the slogistas heard? I'd like to think there's scope for microgeneration from waste heat in many homes. How about the self sufficient fridge, computer, kettle, air conditioner? Where's the main limitation? Batteries? kwh produced per engine size? Thoughts anyone?

By the way, the image is from: where you can procure said engines...

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Inspector Tapehead Vid #4 and NEWS

I'm catching up with a few things here: Forgot to post Mr. Common's latest Tapehead video, from our sojourn to Stoke Newington (LDN) / Borough (LDN) / Withington (MAN):

That brings the total number of tapehead vids to 4, all viewable on Inspector Tapehead's channel here.

and NEWS:
Chris rang not but an hour ago, fresh out of a day's mastering of the album, Duress Code. Things are sounding very tasty indeed, let me tell you. I don't think the others will let me publicly announce a possible ETA for the album given that we're 18 months past the first estimate already. But soon.

East West Quintet

Just listening to some East West Quintet, courtesy of Mr. Johnson. Not sure if he's linked already, but if not, well worth checking out.

A pleasant melding of sax/piano/drums with something of a rock flavour, and all the jazzy noodling one would hope for. Kinda reminds me equally of Employee of the Month and the more visceral moments of EST.


Fergus ont' web

Meant to post this a while back - Fergus has updates his website with some pics from Allotment back in November - or was it October? Good times, and a great looking website.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Climate Information is Beautiful/Terrifying

George sent me a great link:

David McCandless, a London-based author, writer and designer for the Guardian and Wired amongst others, has been putting together some very good graphics on the subject of climate change of late. They are over on his blog, Information is Beautiful. The corker is this post depicting typical arguments and counter arguments between skeptics and the science - would be very interested to hear people's / Gaz's views.

Not the Gaz ain't a person, but you know what I mean..

Roy, and thanks to George!