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Culture Social Media

A clash of sameness

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Now when the phone rings on the train, everyone instinctively checks their pockets. People used to personalize their ringtones so that their incoming calls were unique. Ringtones were a badge of individuality, demonstrating your music tastes and personality. The passengers with the Ghostbusters ringtone anthem always made seatmates chuckle.

The standardization of sound is one indication that the fascination with mobile phones has petered out. Instead, it’s the apps that live on our screens that determine what type of person we are.

LinkedIn, SnapChat, Instagram, Tumblr– these ‘places‘ allude to where we like to live, work, and play. We are uniform on the outside but raging in our little worlds, filter bubbles, or echo chambers on the inside.

It’s only when we chat with a stranger or go the polls do we realize that the digital and physical realities don’t match up. The world is not as it seems.

There is no such thing as a virtual utopia, a second life. If you’re not acting as the person online and off, you’ll inevitably run into frustration and subjugation. The real world runs on tribes until the creative minority once again breaks it back into pieces to retain their originality.

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bombtune.com

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It all started with music. My father used to bring home mixtapes from Europe that you couldn’t get in the US. It made me curious: if such diversity of music existed what else was out there that I needed to discover? Music was and still is my compass for navigating a world of cool stuff.

Check out what I’m listening to at bombtune.com. Here are my favorite tracks from 2016 if you’re interested in beats, rhymes, and pieces.

Daily Prompt: Sound

If you're a WRITER or aspiring blogger, I highly recommend creating your own blog and publishing something new every day (read my post on how to set up a FREE blog on Wordpress).

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Culture

Developing an algorithmic eardrum

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gif via hypebot

Discovery requires effort. It’s for this reason we outsource the work to algorithms. We don’t want a list of items completely unfamiliar.

Spotify’s Discover Weekly succeeds because it balances the unknown and the recognizable. Familiarity breeds trust. Algorithms are the new peer recommendations.

But behind every machine is a human engine. From the curators to the avant-garde, someone has to know the difference between the good and the bad and what makes a piece of art edgy.

Art stirs emotions and requires human sensibility. When it comes to algorithms, brains and emotions are still the equalizers, for now.

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Culture Newsletter Tech

‘The map is not the territory,’ Alain de Botton’s Atheism, Seth Godin on social media, NEW beats and more

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gif via Casey Bloomquist

Read of the week: ‘The map is not the territory’

Scroll down to hear the tracks of the week 🔻


Arts & Culture

Start before you’re ready

Inspiration can be a distraction. Producing something original requires concentration and distance. Roger Smith is a watchmaker at Hodinkee on the remote Isle of Man, far away from Switzerland and Cupertino.

“The influences just aren’t around, and I can just get on with my days work and just make what I want to make.”

Roger Ebert wrote this after 25 years as a movie critic

The job of a movie critic is unusual. Instead of spending your time at the office or even at home penning away your novel in ample lighting, you watch 2-3 movies a day. You get “up in the morning and in two hours it is dark again, and the passage of time is fractured by editing and dissolves and flashbacks and jump cuts.”

Alain de Botton — A School of Life for Atheists

Alain de Botton is an atheist, but his perspective on religion is far more complicated. Instead of debunking religion in thinking that all pious people are idiots–as some atheists may presume–he shines a light on some of the things where religion excels: in values, wisdom, communions, and “the wonders of religious architecture.” As he says nearly eight minutes in:

“These religions at their highest points, at their most complex and subtle moments, are far too interesting to be abandoned merely to those who believe in them.”


Philosophy & Productivity

What are you going to do with all that inspiration?

Most creators think their work is original. It’s not; we steal from the artists that came before us.

“Beethoven depended on a Mozart to be a Beethoven. Picasso depended on a Cezanne. Without Michelson, there would be no Einstein” – James Altucher

“The map is not the territory”

The human head consists of a left brain and a right brain, each with distinct cognitive functions. The left hemisphere is known for processing logic and doing verbal and mathematical analysis while the right half excels in creativity and imagination, the visual stuff.


Social Media & Technology

Why Seth Godin opts out of social media

Seth’s thoughts on social media are thought-provoking and to the point. If you listen to his latest interview with Brian Koppelman, you’ll hear Seth say this:

“Social media is based on infinity. If you look at how many Facebook shares you got, if you look at how many Twitter followers you have, you have just enrolled in the wrong dialogue with yourself.


New Music

  1. Mark Ernestus’ Ndagga Rhythm Force – Yermande (Kick And Bass Mix)
  2. Big Peace – Diva
  3. Call Me Like – Mission Road featuring Ft. Anderson.Paak
  4. Alix Perez – Had I Known
  5. Complete Walkthru – Intuition Brought Me Here Intuition Brought Me Here

Listen

If you're an artist, photographer, writer, etc., I highly recommend creating your own blog and publishing something new every day (read my post on how to set up a FREE blog on Wordpress).

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Newsletter

The 100% Rule, Ai Weiwei on Beijing surveillance, the California Typewriter, new tunes from Joy Orbison, and more

Pick of the week:  In 2009, former Yale professor and best-selling author William Deresiewicz addressed West Point cadets on the meaning of solitude and leadership.Read on…For tracks of the week, scroll down 🔻 


Arts & Culture

Ai Weiwei on Beijing Surveillance

One of the key traits of any artist is to protect against and take advantage of the contradictions. It goes back to what F. Scott Fitzgerald said about intelligence: “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposing ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.” In this video, Chinese dissident/artist Ai Weiwei explains why he calls Beijing his home.

“I wouldn’t think Beijing’s a prison for me. But Beijing is definitely a prison for freedom of speech.”

Trekking the Shikoku henro, Japan’s oldest pilgrimage route

Financial Times writer Barney Jopson went on the Shikoku pilgrimage in Japan, a route founded and dedicated to commemorate the original 750-mile trek of Buddhist monk Kobo Daishi. Also known as Kūkai, Daishi returned from studying in China in the late 7th century AD to help import Buddhism in Japan. Jopson biked the route but given the age of many of the participants, most prefer to travel by bus while others walk.

“There are no definitive counts but each year between 80,000 and 140,000 pilgrims — known as o-henro — are estimated to travel at least part of the route. According to one survey, around 60 per cent of them are over the age of 60. The vast majority speed around on air-conditioned bus tours but a hardy band of 2,000-5,000 are estimated to do it on foot, usually completing the circuit in 40-50 days.”


Philosophy & Productivity

Solitude and Leadership

A lot of people think thinkers can’t be leaders. But that’s exactly what leadership is: thinking. The leader of a group takes what they read and hear internally and externally and originates his/her own thought. They speak for themselves. As former Yale professor and best-selling author William Deresiewicz said in his 2009 speech to West Point cadets:

“If you want others to follow, learn to be alone with your thoughts.”

The 100% Rule

Half-ass efforts produce half-ass results. The same goes for 99 percent effort. If you don’t commit 100 percent to whatever it is–quitting smoking, writing a book, taking photography seriously–it’s going to fall to the wayside.

“99 per cent is a b*tch. 100 per cent is a breeze.” Jack Canfield, The Success Principles


Social Media & Technology

Clack-clack: California Typewriter, the movie

“Keep ’em typing!” says Kenneth Alexander, a typewriter repairer with over forty years of experience. He works for California Typewriter in San Francisco, one of the last surviving typewriter repair shop in the United States.

“If you want to concentrate, if you want to write in your own mind, write with a typewriter. You see the words hit the paper. There’s no distractions.”

‘That time when I…’

One of the ways mobile behavior has changed is that instead of sharing stuff at the moment, we edit and share it later with a caption like “That time I…”. According to Washington Post journalist Britt Peterson, the phrase, and its various iterations (“that time when,” “that moment when,” etc.) create immediate intimacy with your followers which is why it works so well for celebrities, who may not want to reveal their present location for obvious privacy concerns.

“That time I” works in real time to make readers feel like they’re part of an in-group, creating collective nostalgia for events that just took place. In some way, it’s a neat linguistic trick.”


New Music

  1. Tycho – Epoch
  2. CO/R – Bells, Walking
  3. Scntst – OTD (Break Mix)
  4. Lenzman – Don’t Let Me Go
  5. Kirk Knight – Young Ones
  6. Motion Graphics – Brass Mechanics
  7. Ash Walker Music – Dark Hour
  8. COMBAT! – Jacaranda
  9. Sam Gellaitry – Life
  10. Mood Tatooed – Outsider

> Listen

If you're a WRITER or aspiring blogger, I highly recommend creating your own blog and publishing something new every day (read my post on how to set up a FREE blog on Wordpress).

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Categories
Arts Creativity Newsletter Social Media Tech

“When the brain is listening to music, it lights up like a Christmas tree.” | WellsBaum.com Digest

1. This too can be yours: Why ‘AirSpace Style’ is making all places look the same

“Digital platforms like Foursquare are producing “a harmonization of tastes” across the world”

2. The obsession with Kate Bush, explained

“I don’t believe in god, but if I did, [Kate Bush’s] music would be my Bible.”

3. This professor describes the future educated person

“In the online world the only thing you’re the master of is your collection, your archive, and how you use it, how you remix it. We become digital archivists, collecting and cataloging things.”

4. Avoid making backup plans

“For some people, not making a backup plan might indeed be beneficial in helping them put their best effort forward”

5.  Music is a performance-enhancement drug

“When the brain is listening to music, it lights up like a Christmas tree.”

6. Google Photos frees up phone space automatically

“It’ll delete your photos off your phone after syncing them to the cloud so you don’t have get that 16GB iPhone nightmare that says “storage is full.”

7. Do we have to be sad to be creative?

“Using econometrics, he calculates that a 9.3 percent increase in negative emotions leads to a 6.3 percent increase in works created in the following year. ”

8. How teens and hipsters stain the resurgence of Vinyl

“I have vinyls in my room but it’s more for decor, I don’t actually play them”

9.  How libraries stay current in the digital age

“a modern public library can be a place of exploration, play, performance and creativity, as well as of contemplation, reading and research.”

10. Lance Wyman reveals his creative process in unreleased “designlogs

“The reason I started keeping log books,’ says Wyman, ‘was that I wanted a record of what I was doing. It’s my way of keeping in touch with the complexity of the design projects that I’m working on.”

New Music


1. Combat – Jacaranda
2. Elementz of Noise – Clock
3. Minor Science – Naturally Spineless
4. The South East Grind – Secret
5. BadBadNotGood – In Your Eyes
Listen to Episode 98 | Tunes of the Week

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