Author Archives: hmvh

On Facebook, BBSes and Big Data

Facebook is the unchallenged 800-pound gorilla in the social media arena. It is a people-data aggregator like no other. After discovering a cache of old BBS registration form printouts I decided to hunt down those ex-members, armed with names and answers they gave some 20 years ago. Continue reading

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A thousand contributions

Last night I made my 1000th contribution to the Discogs database. It’s a landmark achievement. One thousand new audio entries. It’s also baffling why it took almost 12 years to get to this stage. Continue reading

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Fan mail

Discogs is a cross-functional site. Actually, we’re just a bunch of music lovers who do our best to reflect verifiable details, neutral descriptions, and create readworthy profiles. Discussions usually stay civil but sometimes can get heated and lengthy. Not all fan mail is friendly, though. Sometimes things get ugly. Continue reading

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Rewind: 2015

What an eventful year. Marred by the wilful decimation of fellow human beings, this year has once again shown how adept the human race is at causing its own demise. We love harming one another. France was a particularly popular place for getting executed by people of Arab origin who take their religious beliefs way too seriously. Continue reading

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Best-of-the-year radio charts

Like most teenagers of the eighties, I grew up with one ear permanently stuck to the radio. It became customary for Radio 5 and Radio 702 to count down the greatest singles of the year, and I did my darndest to wake up early and write it all down! Continue reading

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Revisiting the SA BBS Scene

Nor has anyone else been willing to commit their full and sordid BBS stories. It’s as if, for some people, the BBS period is a chapter they would rather forget about. Continue reading

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The future is today

Today is “Marty McFly Day” or, alternatively, “Back to the Future Day”. Today is the day when Doc and Marty will encounter hoverboards, flying cars, video conferencing, food hydrators, news drones, fingerprint readers, voice-controlled home automation and mosaic-view multi-channel large-screen flat-panel TV sets, motion controlled arcade games, power laces, augmented reality visors, holographic 3D movies, and a black Michael Jackson giving cooking advice — Max Headroom-style. Continue reading

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How to digitise audio tapes

As is the nature of this beast, other ideas and more tapes have collected since. Some of those tapes were rare, if not unique. Others demanded more attention than the rushed 128kbps rips from the previous round. It seemed sensible to archive some and re-rip others at the highest possible sampling and quality rate. Here then, if you will, is a list of hints and observations on how to best rip audio tapes. Continue reading

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