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  Ian Allen, my good friend and top "tester" died and is becoming famous!  (Read 3019 times)
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Offline philfrei
« Posted 2015-01-23 01:31:43 »

On the 17th, my long time friend Ian Allen died, after complications to a heart valve surgery at Stanford Hospital. He was only 56 years old. My last visit was in the early hours of the 17th--it seemed like he could have fought on, but the odds had just kept mounting: a treatment resistant hospital bacteria, internal bleeding (it had finally scabbed, though), organ failure.

Over the last few years, he had been my best "tester," always willing to check out and comment the projects I was working on, whether musical or programming. He tried to learn Java, then Python, then other languages but despite having been top of his class in first year Physics at UC Berkeley, and successfully game programming with FORTH at Unison Kyocera with me back in the 1980's, his current state of health (cancer survivor, dealing with bipolar, other issues) left him in a state where I think it was just too fatiguing to hold everything in his head all at once.

Regardless, he still had a great perspective, with sharp, honest and unique insights that made him a valuable source of feedback as well as a true friend willing to give me his time like that.

Before he went in for the operation, he was talking about aiming for projects with a time line of about a week to complete. Many of his sound-compositions that were most successful were accomplished in this sort of time frame. We were optimistic, though I was also preparing myself for the worst as a possibility. Am so sad/angry/disappointed that he wasn't able to get through this!

I am really proud that he is getting some recognition in the press. I wish he could have seen this! Rolling Stone, Billboard, Pitchfork, lots of other news feeds! This tribute from negativland (Ian always insisted the proper spelling was lowercase) has been picked up by the press at large. He really was big on the culture jamming concept, right from the start, and as far as I know, introducing those ideas to members of negativland.

music and music apps:
Offline ra4king

JGO Kernel

Medals: 508
Projects: 3
Exp: 5 years

I'm the King!

« Reply #1 - Posted 2015-01-23 06:02:29 »

Wow I have definitely seen that name and face before, but I can't remember where! He definitely seemed like a really talented and awesome man, he will be missed. May he rest in peace.

Offline KevinWorkman

« JGO Plugged Duke »

Medals: 288
Projects: 12
Exp: 12 years - Coding Tutorials!

« Reply #2 - Posted 2015-01-23 13:40:28 »

Sorry for your loss.

But it's awesome that he's getting the recognition he deserves. - Coding Tutorials!
Happy Coding forum - Come say hello!
Games published by our own members! Check 'em out!
Legends of Yore - The Casual Retro Roguelike
Offline philfrei
« Reply #3 - Posted 2015-01-23 18:07:25 »

Thank you!  Cry

As soon as I can get it together, I will post a few of the music/sound pieces he made or that we collaborated on. I'm also trying to locate the first image I have of him, an awesome/scary self-portrait he made that I have filed away somewhere--making very creative use of a photocopier.

It is so weird seeing this publicity now, after so many years of struggle and obscurity. If only there was some way to have harnessed this while he was alive. I wish he (and his mother, who died this last summer) could see this. I feel like there are any number of lessons to be learned here, but I am feeling kind of dense.

music and music apps:
Offline SHC
« Reply #4 - Posted 2015-01-24 07:59:27 »

If he was alive, he will be happy to have a good friend like you. In my opinion, he was very lucky, he got your friendship, may his spirit rest in peace.

I'm sorry for your loss philfrei.

Offline Stranger
« Reply #5 - Posted 2015-01-24 12:55:35 »

My condolences.

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