OK, everyone. I guess that it is time for me to quit being a bystander and jump right in. I've been 'eavesdropping' on the list since I joined in July '03 when I first heard about the VMS.
Please let me introduce myself. I'm Suzy Bjerke, from Tucson, AZ. My BA (1973) from a small (now nonexistent) college in upstate New York is half in math and half in music and I worked my way up in the computer business starting as a peripheral services clerk (read - I unjammed keypunch machines) and ended up as a programmer in 1983. I stopped working to raise kids and got my first desktop computer in 1999 and am quite embarrassed at how computer literate I've become. So please bear with me :) I've recently gone back to school to complete a full degree in Math. However, I feel that I don't have any strengths or expertise in anything that would contribute to the list. I was raised on a Guest Ranch and ranching really is the only thing that I know well.
Thank you for your post to the list. I noticed the similarities to musical notation when I first looked at the VMS but haven't really been able to describe exactly what about it (other that the widespread letter repition and 'cadences' and the end of lines) gives me the impression. But your comments have given me more direction. In 1972, I did a very small assignment of musical transcription from Gregorian Chant (time signature in circular time) to modern notation. I might try playing at that with the VMS.
I'll be back in school on 1/14 and, as such, won't be able to contribute much to the list. But if I notice anything interesting, I'll post.
Jeff, Nick, Rene, Dana, Dennis, et al - you are great. I've really learned a lot from just reading your comments. I know that you all will crack the VMS with your expertise and dilligence.