Using Corporeal Meadows
. . . or, How can we help you best view our site?
Jon Szanto
Contents  :  Site Use HOME

These days, any decent web browser will handle the majority of Corporeal Meadows just fine. Even if you are viewing the site with somewhat outdated software/hardware you can at least access the text information. However, I can't ignore the possibilities of presenting, well, a more corporeal online experience, which means photo-realistic scans of album covers, instrumental parts and the like, and sound clips of relevant material. I'm not trying to fool anyone here: the CD's you buy will have better sound, but you'll find things on the Meadows that you can't find anywhere else. The following are some tips for the Meadows

[ If you've read all this before and you are still having problems, write to -- I really do try to fix things when people bring them to my attention. ]

Basic Navigation
If you entered right at the domain (either or, then after a splash screen you were taken to the main page of the Meadows, from here on out known as HOME (you can click on that link if you want to make sure you know which page I'm talking about). This is the page you should always check out, as this will be where all the current Partch news, and it also contains links to every other part of the site.

A recent change has been to make the "Contents", on the Meadows home page, very brief (known as the Brief Listings) -- this will make the page smaller, and download faster. When you come here, and are still new to the items available, you will probably want to look at the main Table of Contents. Here you will find the same complete listing, but with more verbose descriptions of the individual items on the site (articles, sound files, graphic galleries). Whenever you move off of these two main pages, you will frequently see the following "navigation" bar somewhere at the top of the page:

Contents : Reading : Lyrical HOME

You will always know where you are, and can navigate back: the above shows that you are reading the "Lyrical Partch" page, which is in the "Partch Reading Room" section of the "Table of Contents". Clicking on Contents will take you to the top of the Contents page, while clicking on Reading will take you right to that sub-section. Off to the right you see "HOME", which will take you right back to the main entrance to Corporeal Meadows. And on any page that you see a link stating TOP, well, it takes you to the top of the page (probably where you'll see that navigation bar).

NOTE: Some areas of the site pre-date this well-thought-out navigation scheme, and I haven't decided the best way to go on some areas. You can always get back to the Meadows home page, either with a Meadows or HOME link.

The tools we recommend for an optimal browsing experience:

  • Browser: your choice. If it's still a 2.0 version there might be a bell or whistle missing, but you can still get around. That said, newer browsers may yield a richer experience.
  • RealPlayer for the audio examples. 5.0 is the current version I've coded for.
  • Verdana and Comic Sans MS TrueType Fonts; not necessary, I've only used them in a couple of spots, to emulate certain text effects.
  • A decent quality (16-bit) sound card.
  • Video card: For the photos and graphics in the Art Institute, 16-, 24-, or 32-bit color. Old 8-bit (256 colors) cards will, work, but won't look as good.
  • A glass of 18 year old Macallan . . . no, wait, that's optional. But recommended.

I do my level best to check the site on different browsers, hardware, etc., but it has gotten nearly impossible to craft a site that looks good on every possible combination -- that is, unless all you want to display is text. The Reading Room should give you plenty of info even if, for some reason, you don't or can't opt for sound or better graphics.

Who Helped
It wouldn't be nice if I didn't give credit to some of the web designers whose work has influenced the framework and design of Corporeal Meadows. The great part about net life is that you can study the code of those who do it right. This is not idle, gratuitous linkage: with a big nod to their artistry, the "Eye Like Your Place" loving cups go to:

  • Lance Arthur, lord of Glassdog. His place is a marvel, at least today; next week, who knows? And with sage advice even the curmudgeonly Harry would have appreciated (at least in tone), how can I ignore him?
  • Derek Powazek, whose packaging of thoughts in The Fray is elegance incarnate on the web, letting the words themselves do the work. He just won the CSOTY for "Best Personal Site, 1998".
  • Leslie Harpold, who turned me onto Modern Solutions to host Corporeal Meadows, runs a great 'zine known as SMUG and it makes me wish all I had to do was set words, because I love her work that way (check out her other sites...).
...and lot's of other great e-people who, in this community, shared insights, looked at code, and told me when it was broken or butt-ugly.

That Should Do It
Crank up the modems, turn up the volume, turn off the underlined links (I hate that!) and dive into the latest offerings in the Art Institute of Gualala. I make every effort to test these tricks on many platforms, but I rely a lot on the visitors to give me feedback. And as Harry said, when someone told him to be careful with a hammer, "Hell, I haven't hit my thumb in 30 years!"

My sentiments exactly, whatever that means. Welcome to DIY on the Meadows...