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Phil Burk Biography

I started my electronic music explorations in grade school by playing with the Leslie effects of our cheesy home organ. Making UFO sounds was much more fun than playing Silent Night. At U.C. Berkeley, I started experimenting with analog electronics by building some simple LFO and sample and hold circuits into a shoe box.

After Berkeley, I worked as a radiation physicist where I found out that playing with computers was more fun than standing on a barrel of nuclear waste holding a lead brick between my legs while my coworker tightened the lid. I also got to work with the most horrifying substance on Earth: flaming, hydroflouric acid soaked, plutonium laden dog feces.

From 1980 to 1985 I worked in the daytime as a graphics programmer doing CAD and map making. By night I experimented with home brew Z80 and 68000 computers that controlled various digital oscillators and noise makers. From 1981 to 1992, I hung around the Mills College Center for Contemporary Music. I started off trading studio time for code and eventually ended up working there officially. While at the CCM, I worked with Larry Polansky and David Rosenboom on HMSL,the Hierarchical Music Specification Language. I also worked with Mike Haas on JForth, a subroutine threaded Forth for the Amiga computer. I am currently working at the 3DO Company developing real-time DSP based synthesis hardware and software for console CD-ROM players.


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