Flutterby™! : been in the pipeline, filling in time

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been in the pipeline, filling in time

2009-11-13 23:35:41.747479+00 by Dan Lyke 5 comments

CJ forwarded The Machine Stops, by E.M. Forster, first published in the Oxford and Cambridge Review in 1909:

Time passed, and they resented the defects no longer. The defects had not been remedied, but the human tissues in that latter day had become so subservient, that they readily adapted themselves to every caprice of the Machine. The sigh at the crises of the Brisbane symphony no longer irritated Vashti; she accepted it as part of the melody. The jarring noise, whether in the head or in the wall, was no longer resented by her friend. ...

Unconnected whatsoever, have you heard that Jonathan Berger, professor of music at Stanford, is finding that teens are starting to prefer the artifacts of MP3s?

Berger then said that he tests his incoming students each year in a similar way. He has them listen to a variety of recordings which use different formats from MP3 to ones of much higher quality. He described the results with some disappointment and frustration, as a music lover might, that each year the preference for music in MP3 format rises. In other words, students prefer the quality of that kind of sound over the sound of music of much higher quality. He said that they seemed to prefer "sizzle sounds" that MP3s bring to music. It is a sound they are familiar with.

[ related topics: Music Chocolate Education ]

comments in descending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2009-11-15 01:21:16.104838+00 by: Chris

it's all good if you are getting what you need and it takes you to a good place. hell, I have boomboxes that ring my bell ain't no bad......some is just better

#Comment Re: made: 2009-11-14 13:15:44.660789+00 by: meuon

Laughing, I like it all and still listen to music whenever I can, loud. Work music is currently a mix of Goa Trance and Grateful Dead live jam's.. two ends of the spectrum, the goa has fat clean baselines a steady beat, stereo effects and predictable leads. The 'dead are as unstructured organic and awesome. A lot of it is high rate MP3 (160k oer 192k) or .ogg and it seems to be pretty clean to me. The kids don't understand bit rate and such, and are just listening to whatever everyone else is listening to.

Joe's got a wonderful collection of small bar blues artists from Houston that are wonderfully gritty live blues.. and makes me want to go hang in smoke filled bars and drink whiskey.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-11-14 06:29:31.806397+00 by: ebradway

So no more alcohol and now no more rock and roll... Sure hope you're still going at the third part...

#Comment Re: made: 2009-11-14 06:12:06.458995+00 by: Dan Lyke

I actually listen to very little music these days, and what I do is directly off CD. Most of the stuff I listen to on the MP3 player is podcasts, and though I have been known to delve into Coverville occasionally I find it doesn't hold my attention.

So, no, I don't have real experience with audio formats, and really I tossed that up there to show how prescient Forster was a full century ago.

#Comment Re: made: 2009-11-14 04:17:54.811618+00 by: ebradway

My Bose Companion II speakers that sit on my desk came with a written disclaimer that said something along the lines of "If you like overblown bass or want speakers that make you 'feel' grenades going off, return these to the store immediately. These speakers are designed to accurately recreate a full range of sound." I wish I had kept that disclaimer.

Ever since I bought my first speakers I've noticed I've always been more of a sonic purist. I could never handle the "fuzz" of Cerwin Vegas (although, for some kinds of rock they do work well). And I've always been a fan of the way Bose speakers produce sonic environments that defy the size of the speakers.

I think you linked before to how recording engineers compress music so much nowadays that we are actually getting less sonic range out of CDs than we did albums or cassettes. The idea is to make everything "louder".

BTW, I just upgraded my Sansa MP3 plater to RockBox. It can play OGG and FLAC. Have you had good results with OGG?