Barry Vercoe's retirement party
Wednesday, May 5, 2010 from 2pm to 8pm
on the 6th floor of the new Media Lab building,
E14, 75 Amherst Street, Cambridge, MA 02139




2pm - Welcome, Winter Garden (E14-638)

2:30pm - Talks, Lecture Hall (E14-633)

  Judy Brown (Wellesley) & Mihir Sarkar (MIT)
Miller Puckette (UCSD)
Hubert Howe (Queen's College, CUNY)
Michael Casey (Dartmouth)
Youngmoo Kim (Drexel)
Paris Smaragdis (Adobe)
Richard Boulanger (Berklee/CSound)
Brian Whitman (The Echo Nest)

5:30pm - Reception, Winter Garden (E14-638)

6:30pm - Dinner, Silverman Skyline Room (E14-648)

Organized by

Judy Brown, Wu-Hsi Li, Mihir Sarkar, Sandy Sener, Brian Whitman


The Synapse Remixes by Dr. Richard Boulanger's students at Berklee: AIF versions and MP3 versions

Judy Brown's photo album
“I didn't make many choices since I might have cut out somebody's best pose so I apologize for the large number.
Thanks again to all of you for making it a very fun party as well as a tribute befitting Barry.”

(public entries)

John ffitch
Thank you for so many things; csound, working with you at ADI and elsewhere, .... All the best wishes for the next phase of your life.

Molly Bancroft
Dear Barry,
It doesn't really seem like it was that long ago that I was your administrative assistant in the Music and Cognition Group, mostly because I have such great memories of working with you and being around your rather quiet brilliance. I wish I could attend your party, but just know that I'm wishing you the best in whatever comes ahead and that it was an honor and joy to work with you back in the early '90s. Honestly, I got my real desire to record music and think more about technology during my time there. It was rather life-changing, actually, and I consider you to be a major inspiration and I think often of the Media Lab to this day. Probably the best "day job" ever!
Have a great "retirement," Barry... whatever that will be!
Best wishes, Molly

Building 26 had an ambiance conducive to productivity that the Media Lab (and New Media Lab) will never have. Somehow the brains behind the Arch Mac (and Stata Center) cannot understand what environments like 26 and the old Building 20 bring to the table. As we become richer, our squandering of resources on the superfluous becomes more acute. Your teaching style matched that more spartan environment, (perhaps inadvertently) teaching more than the subject matter. My peers did not appreciate it, but, at least in retrospect, I can see the silver lining. Thank you.

Mitch Resnick
Dear Barry,
You helped make the Media Lab the special place that it is. Thanks for everything. We'll miss you.
Mitch Resnick

Michael Carnes
Happy retirement Barry! Little did I know when you invited me into the old EMS program that it would turn into a career! Thanks, I think.

Chris Schmandt
Barry, I'm sure you'll enjoy what you're doing as you leave the Lab as much as the work you've done while here at MIT. Best wishes.

Jean Piché
Dear Barry,
Without your groundbreaking work, I think all musics would be that much less exciting. I want to thank you personally for giving me and my students incredible opportunities to contribute to the world of computer music. We tend to take it for granted these days but its a bit like flying in an airplane. When the first people found how do it, it was a very big deal. Thank you for being there.
You deserve a rich and fulfilling retirement.
All my best to you and your family.

Almon Clegg
Wishing the very best to one of the truly great scientist I have ever known. He has added much to the knowledge bank of music, acoustics and how digital technology operates in this overreaching space. Congratulations and may he enjoy a rich and rewarding retirement. (I have heard all MIT retirees have greater opportunities and greater wealth increase after than before. And may it be so with Barry!)
Almon Clegg

Sreenivasa Inukoti
Dear Barry,
I would like to thank you for all that you have done for me and my family. Your help has had an everlasting effect.
When I arrived in an unknown world, I did not know anyone and had absolutely nothing. You kindly helped me out and took care of me as if I was part of your family. The days we spent working on the Csound project are ones that I will never forget. You taught me, provided me with necessities, and were a mentor that I always could look up to. It has been a great pleasure working with you and I owe you great thanks.
Congratulations on your retirement and wish you all the best!

Elliot Katzman
Barry - its been a pleasure to get to know you over the last few years. Your reputation is legendary and i appreciate the many lives you must have impacted. Best wishes as you move on to the next phase of your life.
Best regards,

Max Mathews
I am very sorry not to be about to attend your party, but I wish you a very busy and interesting retirement which I know you will have. As I am sure you already know, your life after retiring will get both busier and happier because you can do the things you want to do and ignore the crap that jobs inflict on all of us. If you ever pass close to San Francisco, Marjorie and I would love to have you visit us for a few days. We live in the Mission district which now has even more action than North Beach. Thursday mornings you can join us for breakfast in Berkeley with the Dead Presidents Breakfast Club including Tom Oberheim, Don Buchla, Dave Wessel, Adrian Freed and Roger Linn all of which are very much alive but have started companies that are now dead. We can even look in on CCRMA as I usually do on Tuesday and Wednesday.
All the best,

Sharon Lally
Retirement means switching one set of daily projects for another.
Sharon Lally

Paula Korn
Congratulations on your much deserved retirement! And congratulations on your extraordinary career. I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to support a small part of it. I wish I could be there for your Big Event but, alas, my schedule does not permit it (still in California).
Wishing you well as you go forward to enjoy the best years of your life!
Warm regards - Paula

Jim Abbott
Best Wishes Barry!

John Harrison
While I understand your desire to progress to other challenges, it is hard for me to imagine the Media Lab without you. I look back at my time at the lab with great fondness and feel very lucky that you accepted me into your group. And what a fantastic group --- my colleagues were amazing, and the history of the group as well as your own personal history were an inspiration to all of us.
Your contributions to the computer music community are immeasurable. Thank you for your generosity to this community, to the Music Mind and Machine group, and to me.

John Stautner
Barry, congratulations! And thank you!! My experiences at the MIT Experimental Music Studio were formative indeed, and thank you for your leadership and wisdom in helping me define my interdisciplinary Master's program. That was the time when the Media Lab was just getting constructed and we had discrete programs like Architecture Machine Group, Visible Language Workshop, Experimental Music Studio and more, combined of course with access to the digital signal processing and also the human perception folks in RLE and EECS.
Kim and I look forward to seeing you at the party!
With best regards,
John P. Stautner

Owen Meyers
Thank you for a wonderful experience at the MIT Media Lab. Your inspiring ideas, relaxed demeanour and engaging sense of humour have helped guide me to where I am today. It has been an unforgettable experience working alongside you in the 4th floor recording studio, teaching some OLPC laptops to play a piece of music together and such, not to mention watching you perform those infamous karaoke renditions of The Beatles, winning over the hearts and ears of your captive audience. I wish you the best in all your future endeavours.

Tom Maglione
Thank you for your teaching, guidance and friendship over the years. May your next phase be as productive and enjoyable as the rest!
Best Wishes,

Brian Wong
Csound has allowed me to follow my musical dreams. What you have enabled with the gift of Csound to the world community is not only the creation of music, but people themselves. Thank you so much.

Mike Moser-Booth
Thank you so much for all your contributions to the world of electronic music. You are an inspiration to us all and are leaving behind an incredible legacy. I wish I were able to attend to thank you in person. You deserve our utmost gratitude for all that you have done, and I wish you well in the future.

Joachim Heintz
Thanks for Csound and all the best for your next years!

Oeyvind Brandtsegg
A lot of things in computer music would not have been possible without your efforts. A million "thank you"'s for the work on Csound, which I adore and love and use for many hours every day. All of my artwork during the last 10 years is based on Csound.
Congratulations on this special day.
Oeyvind Brandtsegg, professor of music technology, NTNU Trondheim Norway

Stefano Bonetti
Thanks for your great work!!!
... from an italian csounder enthusiast.

Dr David Worrall
Sorry I can't be there, mate!
Retire? Not bloody likely!
Maybe you'll get a chance to visit us down under (= up over) more often now.
You're been an inspiration to _so_ many for _so_ long and I'm sure I speak for many in the Australasian computer music community in saying "well done" and ... "enjoy!"

Panos Katergiathis
Thank you for the music.

Andrés Cabrera
Thanks for the beautiful seed you planted!
All the best,

Ali Isciler
Many thanks to Mr. Vercoe that they have us as an open possibility,
That's fantastic.

Thank you Barry for giving me option to learn Csound. These days, I enjoy Csound.

Georg Boenn
Wishing you many happy years to come, full of love and music.
I am taking a big bow to the man who gave us Csound.
It's such an invaluable tool for composition, research, learning and creativity.
It surely must be very rewarding for you to see the fruits of your work growing everywhere.
Georg Boenn
Senior Lecturer
University of Glamorgan
Cardiff, UK

Michael Gogins
All I can say is thanks! You created one of the best musical instruments ever made and ensured that it was and remains available to the world. As a composer, I find that Csound is better suited for realizing algorithmically generated scores than other systems including more recent ones. As a developer of music software and a contributor to Csound, I find the Csound community supportive and receptive. As a software engineer, I am deeply impressed by the original design of Csound, and I have learned some important things from it.
Please accept my best wishes for your future life and work.

Jess Kim
Thank you for everything! Your support and guidance in Haiti was invaluable, and I'm so grateful to have been able to learn from you. We will miss you!

Stephen Shenefield
Barry: I can truly say that you are part of my formative years - as we first met around 1964 when I was 1 year old and you were... more than 1 year old. Music, sound, and technology are my life and livelihood now, and I believe I can attribute at least some of my passion to that early meeting! Thanks!

john saylor
i'd like to add my voice to the virtual choir singing our song of appreciation to you for leading the way in combining programming with composing. and also noteworthy is how you have been open with your code, again prescient.

Art Hunkins
Many thanks for your gifts to the world's composers, and through them to the world at large. Your ongoing dedication to our art is a blessing to all.
Best wishes in retirement (I recommend it heartily).

Nicolas Saint-Arnaud
I regret that I am not able to attend your party - traveling is getting more difficult with a young family.
I had a great time at the Media Lab, and I thank you for giving me this great opportunity to pursue my passion.
I hope to see you at the Media Lab anniversary in the fall.

Sal Sofia
Dear Barry,
...sound speaks louder than words. You made possible to unite people from every cardinal point in the world, and to make their heart sound (sing) forever.
Thank you and bless you.

Jeff Bilmes
Hi Barry,
Congratulations on all of the amazing things you have achieved over your career. I am still inspired by you and all of the things that you have done, and I'm certain that even after your "retirement" you'll continue to innovate and contribute in significant ways to the fields of music and technology.
Best regards,

Louis Stuhl
Thanks for your teaching!

Ted Selker
On the occation of Barry Vercoe’s special day!
I had not gotten to know Barry Vercoe in my decades of flirtation with the Media Lab, and our styles and work are very different, so when I came on sabbatical in 1998 and thenas an associate professor in 1999I didn’t expect much connection. But I was wrong- his observations were among the most important in my career, as they have been for many others.
The first thing that caught my attention was that his students typically delivered the deepest, most prepared, and most comprehensive thesis talks in the Media Lab. They referred honestly and easily to the literature of others’ work, the progress they had made, and had excellent suggestions of what should follow.
Barry Vercoe might be very quiet in a meeting, and then make a passionate thoughtful statement out of the silence. Barry is a powerhouse and a technical giant, having created a corpus of work in signal processing and music that stands strong and that the world depends on. His students have been so well-served by him and have done amazing things.
A career has many bosses, mentors and colleagues. The ones that matter most are sometimes the ones you notice least at first. In an offsite meeting in a remote part of Ireland, Barry took me aside and said, “You say important things, but maybe too many”: it helped. In 2005, I was giving a talk at a lab outside of Sydney, Australia,, when I noticed Barry Vercoe in the audience. He had taken the time to come to my talk and remark that it was clear and had taught a lot … it still helps.
Time and again during my decade at the Media Lab, Barry would take me aside and give me a hint. His comments were caring and well timed, and I still appreciate them gigantically.
The conversations became more frequent, thanking me for making a statement that made people think and chiding me for being the person that stuck out my neck. His informal mentoring stands as some of the most valued in my career.
Ted Selker,
Associate Director Cylab Mobility Research
Carnegie Mellon Silicon Valley
Visiting Scholar Stanford Computer Science Department
NASA Research Park, Bldg. 23 (MS 23-11)
Moffett Field CA 94035

Robert M Foose
Dear Mr. Vercoe, first, I'd like to express my deep appreciation for creating Csound. I only wish I'd discovered it years ago! Second, I hope your retirement will enable you to more actively pursue all the projects your job kept you from..and may they bring you great satisfaction. Best wishes.

Macciza M
Your work and works over the many years have been a constant inspiration . . .
Hope your retirement allows you to continue in a similar fashion.
Cheers from all Down_Under


Thank you