OS Upgrades, Impending Flights and Awesome Music Apps.

Here’s me just checking in after a week (or so) and just trying to gloss over that long dry spell of posts and just talk about what’s happening in my life outside of books, TV and music.

So, list of things to talk about:

  1. My Windows Upgrade
  2. My impending departure from home country (GOD)
  3. My discovery of a sweet sweet website for amateur music player people.

My Windows Upgrade

I live currently in Sri Lanka and as a non-western country, the majority of computer users here uses Microsoft Windows, as opposed to Mac OS and Linux and other such OSes. And so do I. I have been using Windows since forever and very recently, I downloaded the free upgrade Microsoft made available to Windows 10. So people like me that don’t have money and stuff can go online and download the entire new OS free, along with all the new apps and stuff. So that’s what I did.

Along with that, I upgraded Microsoft Office from MS Office 2010 to Office 365. I did this by using the free student package available to university students (to which I’m entitled since I’m a freshmen this Fall).

I was initially skeptical about Windows 10 because I remember Windows 8 was a severe downgrade (for me personally) from Windows 7. It was completely different and very anti-user friendly. Plus the system seemed WAY TOO geared towards touch devices such as tablets and touch laptops so Windows 8 wasn’t too great. Not to mention it had this annoying bug that it wouldn’t register my Wi-fi fully so even though I had full connectivity, it was always displayed as ‘Limited’ which meant that I couldn’t really open any Windows Apps such as the Windows store or even Windows Music. I had to do manual downloads.

But I am pleased to say that Windows 10 put my worries to rest and so far it has been an amazing OS and the usual start menu is BACK (a little different but here all the same) and has way more user-friendliness than its predecessor. PLUS, it looks way cooler and way more refined than Windows 8 ever did so… GO WINDOWS 10. Likewise, Office 365 is very new and very easy to use and so far, I’m loving it.

The live tiles are more responsive and way better at updating your life with relevant internet things

My Impending Departure from Home Country

So I’m registered for the Fall Semester at Drexel University for 2015 and term starts on September 12th so I’m leaving in two and half weeks…? (give or take a few days).

Leaving this fabulous home I’ve grown up in is a daunting prospect for many many reasons.

  1. I don’t know anyone there and me being not the most socially well-adjusted person in the world, I’m going to have problems.
  2. I don’t have any spending money because I haven’t worked a single day in my life.
  3. I have been not studying for an entire year of my life and soon, I’m gonna have to re-bury my head in academia.
  4. I have to get used to a whole new country, city, culture, currency, college and basically a whole lot of new things.
  5. I’m leaving my well-grounded roots and am going to be mostly culturally isolated even though I devour western entertainment and media for hobbies.
  6. I’m going to have start adulting (very different from adulterating) and be clean, hygienic, nutritious, balanced, punctual and very careful without my parents there to poke and prod me and remind me.
  7. People might not like me.
  8. People might hate me.
  9. I could get mugged there.
  10. I could get killed there.
  11. I could get kidnapped and basically tortured in exchange for information on where my 12 dollars in savings is hidden.
  12. I could get break my laptop and have no money to spend to get it repaired.
  13. I could get a diseases and have no (actually the university does provide health coverage but it’s very small) money to get cured.

The list obviously goes on.
So the pros:

  1. It’s a new place and I love travelling and seeing new places.
  2. I get to study something I’m really interested in and basically love (as opposed to subjects I literally despise with the entirety of my being)
  3. I get to…use university Wi-Fi.
  4. Spotify
  5. I can show off my English skills and defeat expectations (haha)
  6. I can get mistaken frequently for an Indian and then have to correct the mistaker each time and then briefly consider pointing out the difference on my Twitter profile bio without offending either country people.
  7. I get smuggled into diversity statistics and diversity benefits.
  8. No one expects me to wear rich clothes and look rich.

And a whole lot more…….

So obviously I’m conflicted about my exact feelings about leaving but right now, in a nutshell, I’m both pants-shittingly frightened and hair-raisingly excited for my impending departure. GOD.

My discovery of a sweet sweet website for amateur music player people.

So I play the piano and as a self-taught piano player, I can tell you that there’s nothing more tiresome than trying to find out the notations and chords for songs that are less than less popular. I mean if you want to play a popular song, the chances are, sheet music websites have sheet music for popular songs. Or there are countless tutorials on YouTube and Vimeo and other video sharing sites. Or if you’re talented enough and blessed with enough time, you could learn to play it by ear completely (which I resort to occasionally). But if you’re into not so popular music or non-english songs from anime openings and endings, chances are that last option is your must-do thing. And it is so hard to deal with complex japanese song tunes.

So after searching for a while on the interwebs I stumbled on this little delight:

Riffstation is an application which you can download where you can feed in any mp3 you have and it regurgitates the chords and notes that accompany the melody. It does this based on an algorithm so the chord discovery potential is virtually endless.

But because the application is for-pay and the trial version lacks crucial features (not to mention only lasts 30 days), you could use the Riffstation web app here.

The above screenshot is from the web app. You enter the song/artist name in the search box and the search engine returns results from YouTube. Alongside the video you get either the ‘play’ button or ‘get chords’ button. If the button is ‘play’ the app already has computed chords for the video and you can click it and play along with the video as shown above. If the button is ‘get chords’ the app does NOT have computed chords for it but you can request the chords for it. The web app has most of the chords for most videos on YouTube including obscure J-Rock songs too so rest assured that you WILL find what you’re searching for.



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