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Jonathan Taylor

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Everything posted by Jonathan Taylor

  1. Joe, If you're having trouble reaching the lowest buttons, maybe you're putting your thumbs too far into the thumbstraps; if your thumbnail is sticking way out of the other end, that's probably too far for best results. How far in are you? Jonathan
  2. "Arguing instead of presenting arguments"? Yes, I know that's what you are doing, Goran; you do it quite often. Either you are misquoting me deliberately, or you haven't bothered to read my statement properly, which was: Is there something in this statement that you do not understand? If so, say what it is. If you understand it, then either disprove it, or accept that it is true and shut up. Are you being deliberately stupid or are you just pretending? In how many different ways do I have to say it? IT IS IRRELEVANT WHAT WHEATSTONE INTENDED. Now for the second time: DISPROVE MY STATEMENT OR ACCEPT IT. We already know that you start to argue semantics when you find yourself in a corner, so what precisely do you mean by "defective" this week? No, I am not joking, Goran. You present your own subjective experiences as "facts" to try to bolster your own theories, and dismiss the experiences of better players than yourself. If you wish to enter the realms of fantasy, Goran, go ahead. Just remember that when Henk van Aalten asked for an explanation why concertina buttons are so small, YOU couldn't provide one. I did. So is imagination good or bad? Make your mind up. Neither. I use one (a beard trimmer, actually) because I was provided with evidence (visible in the form of other men's well-trimmed beards) that it works. Now, when will I be provided with evidence that your ideas work? (not ever, it now appears, judging by your inability to provide scale drawings). Also, since you do not appear to be aware of scientific methods, let me inform you of the "Burden of Proof" principle: YOU are making the claim, so YOU provide the evidence. It is NOT up to me to "find out for myself". If we haven't got any evidence, how do we know that we are speaking about a "true novelty"? Jonathan Taylor
  3. In that case, I can readily agree that from Goran's viewpoint, the concertina in its current standard forms certainly IS defective. Jonathan
  4. You are trying to change the subject, to divert attention away from the fact that you have not disproved my original statement ("Smaller buttons can be arranged closer together...") Wrong. It is irrelevant what Charles Wheatstone wrote or didn't write about comfort. In musical instruments, if increased comfort can be achieved without compromising the musical capabilities of both player and instrument, fine. If not, then so much the worse for comfort. Instruments need to be as comfortable as necessary, not as comfortable as possible. That is a fact. Now either disprove it, or accept it. Perhaps it isn't the best compromise. Then again, perhaps it is. Neither possibility is affected by your inability to see any reasons for or against. In that case your original reply makes even less sense. Bandoneon button spacing is restricted by the action, not the reedwork, and definitely not by the number of buttons. Since you don't appear to have fully grasped the conclusions of my original (99 word) reply, I will rephrase it for you: If buttons are made too large, players with thick fingers will not be able to press them without touching adjacent buttons (Perry Werner's problem). If the buttons are spaced wider to compensate for this, the keyboard will become too wide and long for players with short fingers to reach all the buttons easily. The existing design is a compromise offering as great a musical capability (range) as possible to as many different people as possible. The only alternative to this compromise is to offer concertinas with different sized keyboards for different sized hands. This would, however, increase costs to the manufacturer, who is not obliged to bear these costs if he thinks that the market for over- and undersized instruments is not big enough. Playing the concertina is not compulsory, and neither therefore is supplying concertinas to fit anybody. Making an instrument in "one size fits all" makes sound economic sense and does not mean that it is "defective". You do not mention wood cutting defects, crowded reed pans or acoustic advantages in any of your articles. I have described above why wider keyboards and larger buttons cannot be regarded as improvements. As for "lacking balance and space for stability", Jim Lucas, myself and others in this forum have disputed this. If you dismiss our evidence and refer only to your own experiences, you end up with merely subjective impressions. So perhaps you will now stop claiming that people who disagree with your ideas only do so because of "tradition" and "love". "...obviously that locked the constructive thinking..."? You are making two typical errors here: 1. You continually dismiss evidence disproving your ideas as merely subjective, while presenting your own evidence as objective; 2. you are showing an attribution bias in that you attribute your own ideas and actions to rationality and logic, while attributing the behaviour of others to emotional, stupid or otherwise negative reasons. And thereby deluding yourself. So what? I didn't claim otherwise. You obviously didn't read my statement carefully. Regardless of what you may think, you are not actually contradicting me. You admit it yourself: scepticism is sensible and conservatism can be sound. Whether a proposed innovation is finally accepted or not depends on whether it is backed up by hard evidence. Which is precisely what I said. That is precisely my opinion of your ideas -- until I get hard evidence that they work. Ah yes, the Galileo fallacy. Göran, opposing the "establishment" (whoever they are) does not automatically mean that you are right and they are wrong. Jonathan Taylor
  5. Then why do so many people make a big deal of how much concertinas weigh and prefer lighter ones? Maybe in principal but not in reality. Rationality doesn't seem to enter into the equation much either. Note that very few concertina players use a neck strap, and the most common way of playing a BA in Ireland is to use only a single shoulder strap rather than a pair. Several people have reported to us that solid buttons have appreciable mass which limits their ability to play crisply and quickly (especially triplets) due to their inertia. I've heard that that was the main reason why Hamish started drilling out his buttons (in order to make them lighter). Richard, As you are probably aware, Goran is trying to "improve" concertinas by adding wrist supports. These will increase weight. They also do not fit on standard treble-sized instruments, so larger instruments will be necessary, also increasing weight. Since these increases in weight and size constitute significant arguments against Goran's "improvements", he is desperately trying to downplay their significance. Jonathan Taylor
  6. Henk's question may also be regarded from another aspect -- namely as a question to be answered as concisely as possible, as he requested -- which I did. However, the trouble with my answer is that it is valid now, not "historic and static", and that it explains why concertina buttons are not "absurd" and "instruments of torture", contrary to Goran's persistent claims. Since he cannot dispute the factual truth of my answer, he attempts to brush it aside with irrelevant pseudoscientific verbiage. No musical instrument can be useful for all purposes, and none optimal for a majority of "users" (contemporary or not), and no-one has claimed otherwise. Firstly: so what? Secondly: so what? And thirdly: so what? None of these points have any relevance to Henk's question regarding concertina buttons, and none of them disprove my statement regarding comfort. "They can therefore be much larger" refers to the bandoneon buttons, not the bandoneons themselves. As far as I am aware, the only person saying this is Goran Rahm, and the only "factor" he has ever mentioned to justify increasing the size of trebles is to allow his wrist supports to be fitted. Traditions of construction (organ building) most probably influenced the design and construction methods of bandoneons; I would be interested to hear from which "tradition" Wheatstone's ideas were developed. In any activity, it is a not uncommon error of beginners to blame any difficulty they might experience on their equipment (especially if they have a high opinion of their own capabilities), and to try all kinds of short cuts to get quick successes. Some people have to finally accept that their failure to achieve the desired success in playing the concertina is due more to their own prejudices and perhaps lack of capability than to any (imagined) shortcoming of the instrument itself, especially when the successes of so many others are considered. With regard to change, innovators are indeed often met with skepticism, but the biggest obstacle to change is not conservatism but a total lack of evidence that the change actually constitutes an improvement.
  7. I believe Jim's out of town right now but I'll have a go: Smaller buttons can be arranged closer together, allowing a smaller keyboard for a given range (good for players with shorter fingers), while at the same time the interspaces can remain large enough to prevent adjacent buttons being snagged inadvertently (good for not so slender fingers). Comfort is of secondary importance, and the buttons are therefore as comfortable as necessary, not as comfortable as possible. In bandoneons, the buttons are already as close together as possible, because of the method of wooden construction, but still so far apart that snagging is not a problem. They can therefore be much larger. 99 I think that was. Jonathan Taylor
  8. Me (the hairy one in the middle) at this year's Eigse Mrs Crotty getting tunes off Jacqueline McCarthy
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