Richard Robinson's Home Page (the Ubiqitous Ego Box)

(which is a phrase that I found knocking around one time, years ago. There will not be a prize for anybody who recognises its source). Anyway, this is my home page, and there's next to nothing here. One day maybe I'll decide to have something to say, but for now there are too many other things to do first.


Clarinet’s a pipe made of wood.
I’d play you a tune if I could,
But the fingering’s insane
And the reeds are a pain -
It’s an ill wind that no one blows good.

... this has been said of just about every reed instrument there ever was, and credited to just about everyone who ever had anything to do with them; the Internet doesn't seem sure where it came from, but Ogden Nash is the most plausible suggestion I've been able to find for the limerick (I've changed it a bit to suit myself).

That was an advert for my CD. Please buy it, now.

I play clarinet. The band I play with these days is called Moorgate. It's a ceilidh band, and it's jolly good. There could be photos and recordings and stuff here, but they're on the band website, so have a look at them there.

Trio RAT never really got many bookings, and is now fairly defunct; but the recordings still exist. Clarinet, mandolin/octave mandolin and guitar, playing anything that took our fancy.

the TuneBook

In the course of going about playing traditional tunes with people, I've learnt a lot of them, more than I can remember at one time. This led me to get interested in feeding them into computers, the idea being that it would make it easier to find the one I was thinking of than forever wading around in huge piles of paper. The time I've spent doing it, I think staying with the paper would have been quicker ...

One outcome of this is, a website full of tunes. It used to be hosted at Leeds University under the name of "Richard Robinson's TuneBook", but then they dropped it, I never heard why. It first went up in the summer of '94 when the web was young, and finally disappeared in the spring of 2009, just a few months short of its 15th year. Kind of a shame it couldn't have reached the anniversary ...

But not to worry, I was replacing it anyway. See "Tunebook Live!" for the new, all-singing-and-dancing version. Web 2 ? Well, Web 1.783beta, at least.

Incidentally, in the course of setting this up, I have registered the domain This, obviously, covers a much wider range than just my stuff. If you have something that would benefit from a name in this domain, get in touch. (I'm not offering hosting, but I can point the names at wherever your stuff is).

the Curious Potato FAQ

The original purpose of this page was to answer a frequently-asked question. I use a signature on my emails and usenet posts, which reads :-

 "The whole plan hinged upon the natural curiosity of potatoes" - S. Lem 
and people keep asking me where it comes from. Stanislaw Lem is a Polish science fiction writer :- this quote comes from "The Star Diaries", published in English translation by Mandarin, ISBN 0-7493-0472-3 ("the 25th Voyage", page 242). I suspect he wrote the whole story just to provide a context where he could get away with using that phrase, but I could be wrong, it might all be an excuse for the bit about the volcano.

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