My favorite interview so far

I’ve been listening to the Top Score podcasts, and this is my favorite one so far. The composer Ben Prunte was self-taught, and worked a lot of other jobs while he learned his craft as a musician. He said it took 10 years before he got good at it!

For Ben, the glamour of scoring video games did not come without effort. While working alternately as a janitor, Google diagnostician, and volunteer coordinator, he dedicated his spare time to honing his craft. After years of improvement, he received a call from the developer of the new game Faster Than Light (FTL). They asked for a score, and Ben’s life changed forever.

The music-writing software he uses is called Cubase, which has been around for a long time.

Here is a playlist of the soundtrack he wrote for the game FTL. I really like it, I think because it reminds me of the electronic music I listened to back in the 70s.

Absent friend

This is one of those off-topic posts.

The reason I got interested in computer graphics software was because of a friend of mine, with the appropriately cosmic name of Denny Ray. I met Denny on an Irish Traditional Music forum. Chiff and Fipple contains many sub-forums that are related to Irish music in varying degrees, and one sub forum, the “Post-structural Pub”, was particularly miscellaneous. Denny had joined when the forum was still fairly new. Along with his trademark dry humor, Denny also liked to post links to unusual scientific discoveries, TED videos, and odd news in general. And, every single day without fail, he posted a link to the APOD — Astronomy Picture of the Day.

Every time he posted the APOD picture, people in the Poststructural Pub would comment on it. Some of the comments were serious, some were silly, and some were visual puns and jokes.

It became my goal to make Denny laugh. I started making visual spoofs on the APOD pictures, and had so much fun doing it that I bought a graphics tablet and software so that I could make better ones.

Original APOD

Denny Cat's Paw

Caroluna tries to make Denny laugh

Carol's cat's paw


Doing these computer graphics projects became a big part of my daily routine, and a part of my identity.

Denny post 2 Later on when I got a job that involved working with MS Publisher, it was much easier to tackle that software because I had already beat my head bloody against the keyboard trying to get Corel Painter to work.



So I have Denny to thank, for my willingness to push through the frustration of learning new software. As I try to learn MC Edit, WorldPainter and Avanti, I say a silent thank you to Denny.



And it has to be a silent thank you, because Denny is no longer with us. He passed away about 2 years ago. I still think of him when I read anything about astronomy, or  when I listen to a TED talk, or watch a NOVA program about quantum mechanics. I also think of him whenever I see draft horses, because he and his wife raised Shire horses.


Denny for blog


Hello Denny where ever you are, and thank you for the ways you influenced my life.




We miss you.


Denny post

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