Aaron Giles

About Me

2018 Year In Review

Back when I was working almost exclusively on MAME as my side gig, I would put together summaries of what I had done. Part of me always felt a bit like it was bragging, but as the years have gone on, going to back to those summaries is actually quite interesting and useful for some perspective.

So as 2018 came to a close, I went away on a bit of a retreat, with the intention of getting a jump on several projects I had in mind. But of the three projects I thought I would work on, only one really interested me enough to pursue, and by the end of that period, I was pretty disappointed.

Thus, to help put things in perspective, I decided to make a list of things I did this year. And even if my retreat projects didn’t entirely pan out, I am still fairly amazed at what I did manage these past 12 months.


This year I was able to check off two bucket list items to sing: J.S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor and Allegri’s Miserere Mei, Deus. I also got to sing Martin’s Mass for Double Choir, which would have been on my bucket list if I’d known about it previously.

I auditioned for and was picked to perform one of my favorite tenor arias, Die Liebe zieht mit sanften Schritten from Bach’s Cantata 36, in the Seattle Bach Choir’s annual Cantata concert.

I sang Purcell’s Evening Hymn solo in church during our monthly Jazz Compline, plus performed duets of Franck’s Panis Angelicus and my own arrangement of the medieval tune There Is No Rose with my lovely wife.

I programmed, organized, advertised, laid out the program for, and performed in the Summer Fling Singers3rd season, featuring a really nice set of Johannes Brahms’ unaccompanied choral works.

I continued taking weekly voice lessons, working on a number of interesting pieces in English, German, and French:

After many months of behind-the-scenes work, I finally finished the engraving and layout for the 150-page Compline Service and Hymnal book for use by the Vicars of Christ Church Compline Choir. I printed up a run of 15 for the choir, then printed up another run of 12 to cover additional interest!

I formalized my engraving efforts this year, publishing new engravings of several works, including the Allegri Miserere Mei, Deus, my friend John Gordon’s Agnus Dei, several solo and duet works, and a complete score for one of my all-time favorite pieces, the Missa 1. pro festis Natalitiis by Georgius Zrunek.

I picked up some old composition projects and began working on them again under the guidance of a new mentor.

I joined the Board of Directors of the Seattle Bach Choir and began work on coordinating a new recording project.

I continued my work as a board member of the Greater Seattle Choral Consortium, helping to improve the bylaws and working on improvements to the website.


I improved my (private) music utilities to be compliable across platforms, and created several utilities based upon them. I also added ABC export and MIDI import functionality.

I did a bunch of ARM-related stuff at work that’s not yet public knowledge.

Web Development

I converted my rehearsaltracks.net site from a pre-generated MP3-based playback system to a live MIDI-driven playback system, using Emscripten to compile C++ code into WebASM. As part of this effort, I updated the user interface to support live tempo alterations and part selection. I also did some more on providing a semi-user-friendly mechanism to import MIDI files, in hopes of supporting tweaks and edits in the future. Finally, I removed the use of jquery on all public pages.

On this site, I also eliminated the use of jquery, as well as reorganized the programming and music sections, fleshed out the graphic design and web development pages, updated the Messiah timing page to include more entries, and updated The Final Rip to include recent purchases.

I redid the GSCC choir browser to be image-based, redid the menuing system, improved the look of the Board of Directors page, and helped a lot of choirs get their database entries up to compliance.

I created a new web page for the Vicars of Christ Church Compline Choir, which is zero-maintenance and automatically updates to show our latest video.

I also created a new web page for my engraving efforts, and updated it with all the new engravings I made this year.

Graphic Design

I created the flyer and program for Summer Fling Singers’ 3rd concert season.

I also did the program layout and design for the Seattle Bach Choir’s Fall concert, Armistice.

Other Stuff

I arranged a two-week trip with my wife and son to visit almost all of our direct family (with apologies to that one sister who moved to the sticks outside of Duluth, MN, sorry!), starting from Rochester, NY, then traveling to Cleveland, OH; Toledo, OH; and finally leaving via Detroit, MI.

I decided to make 2018 my “year of women sci-fi/fantasy authors,” since it occurred to me that I had not read much that fit into that category. Overall, I really enjoyed it, and discovered a bunch of great authors along the way! Without actually trying, I ended up reading 5 Hugo winners* (plus 4 nominees#) and 4 Nebula winners (plus 5 nominees). Full list below:


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