Chandler Swift


I’m a lifelong hacker (the good kind!). My parents have a story they like to tell at my expense: At just a few years old, I was interested enough in my Dad’s laptop brought home from work one evening to somehow manage to change the operating system language into German. Of course, I vehemently deny everything. The interest in computers has stayed, though I like to think I require a bit less supervision now, and I like to tinker with hardware and software everything in between. Things I like include C and Go and Linux and Assembly and MIDI and abusing hardware and…! Things I don’t like include: CSS. Ask me about my latest project!

As a musician I’m wrapping up a stint as the organist/pianist/accompanist at Pilgrim Congregational Church in Duluth, MN, and another as an accompanist for the Lake Superior Youth Chorus. When I’m in Duluth, I often play for Jazz at Blush on Monday nights (and if you play an instrument, please come join us!). I especially enjoy playing in small ensembles and with other people as much as I can.

In my free time, I try to remain active with my Boy Scout troop (of which I am an Eagle Scout), especially on outdoor activities. I enjoy reading science fiction, though I don’t have as much time for it as I might like. I appreciate XKCD comics, especially about technology.


Jul 2020 A phone a month for a year: Intro; Moto G7/Stock Android

Right off the bat, I’ll concede: I’m not buying 12 new pieces of phone hardware for this. However, “Trying a new phone or a new OS on a phone I already have every month for a year” seemed a bit wordy!

I <3 open source, so I enjoy trying new software that increases my freedom. I also have some philosophical issues with how Google treats its users, particularly in ways it seems to abuse its dominant market share to force its apps, ads, and limitations on users. This has led me to back away from Google’s vision of Android, and to try to find a compromise between privacy and utility that best meets my needs.

Jul 2020 Piano Heatmap Analysis (Part 2)

A long time ago, I hacked together a not-quite-working attempt at tracking played keys on a piano. Today, I took another shot at what that attempt might look like with a few more years’ experience in play.

Jul 2020 Impressions of AsteroidOS

A solid two days in, AsteroidOS on the KingWear KW88 is…absolutely awesome. The watch is plenty functional as a watch, hasn’t died in 48 hours (though currently the battery is undefined% so I’m not sure how long that’ll last!) and it scratches every bit of my tinkerer’s itch. It’s absolutely thrilling that I can ssh in and get a root shell, and that I can customize or rewrite anything I want to change!


Dec 2019 Tracking Duluth buses with an interactive light-up map

In which I design and build a 3x4 foot interactive map of Duluth (or at least the parts in which I regularly travel) to view bus locations

Nov 2018 Auto-timed Fish Tank Light

In which I build a NTP-syncin' LED-blinkin' fish light timer.

Mar 2018 Using a 5.25" Floppy as a MIDI instrument

In which Jeff and I get hopelessly distracted from our original goal and wind up making music from a 5.25" floppy drive.

Dec 2017 Building a MIDI Pedalboard

In which I build a MIDI pedalboard from a Baldwin 125B pedalboard and a bit of Arduino magic!

Jul 2017 ESP8266 Light Switch: A Few Revisions

In which I attempt to explain the many revisions of my ESP8266 light switch, as well as some of the cooler ways to control it.