Poster Event?

My university is doing a post conference thing. The want postgrads to make posters explaining their research and then present them at a gathering. Several of these have gone on since I’ve been enrolled. The university will actually cover the printing costs of the poster and they give prizes to the best ones. There’s no admission fee. So this might be a drain on time, but not on finances.

I’ve been ignoring all of them. I’m a composer. I write music. What would my poster say? “Using Joysticks in Suggestive Manners in Musical Performance”? On the other hand, the sheer number of these things seems to indicate that they’re somehow vital to the British academic experience. I have a feeling I need some of this on my CV also, if I want to go on in academia. I need to present some stuff, maybe write an article, do a TAship, etc.
If I were, say, writing code to talk to haptic devices or working on developing the monome (there’s a group coming soon to London to do this. w00t.), then I think I would know what to do. But mostly, I sort of cut up samples and manipulate them. Is that research? I mean, I wrote the code to do all the manipulation, but I did most of it at Wesleyan. And it’s not like I invented any of the ideas I use. SuperCollider has a real DIY ethic, which is one reason I wrote the code myself. The other is because bugs and artifacts don’t necessarily sound bad, but they do tend to sound characteristic and recognizable. I don’t want to sound like GRM Tools, I want to sound like my own set of bugs. Anyway, I know many composers are very mathematically rigorous and thus can appear more researchy, but I’m not. Mathematical rigor in composition is good for some composers in that it gives them direction and sort of scoots them along, but it usually doesn’t result in a perceptible difference of output. It’s fake science, and again, that’s fine if it motivates.
I’m doing this commissioning thing (still), but it doesn’t seem like research? I have a hypothesis, but no controls and the “experiment” is vaguely defined and it’s difficult to draw conclusions. (“The music industry is doomed, so we should try this other model. I already know most of the people who went for it. So, um, give it a try?”). There’s the social networking thing, but it’s still vaporware and not exactly part of my academic program here.
So my point is that I think maybe I should, for the sake of the experience, do a poster, but I’m not finding applicable examples on the internets. And, actually, I see a lot of calls for things go by that I think I might have something to add to, but am not sure where to start. Anyway, anybody got examples of composer posters? I found a couple of interesting links of poster design, but they don’t address content: How to Make a Great Poster and Nasa’s Basics of Poster Design

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Charles Céleste Hutchins

Supercolliding since 2003

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