Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Jamie xx, Music Services & Studio–JQ

Weekly Update 2016-08: Finally listening to the side project of The xx: Jamie xx, thinking about the different use cases of different music platforms (especially as music streaming services become more mainstream), and lovely illustration from Studio–JQ. Not to mention some tinkering around with Arduino.

Music: Jamie xx
I don't know how this one slipped through the cracks, but it did. I only just got into In Colour the other day, and it is truly a masterpiece. I didn't know it, but everyone and their grandmother has been sampling a track on it called Loud Places, including Bag Raiders and Chrome Sparks.

My favourite part of the album is no single track, although there are certainly some winning ones, but it is the fact that all of the songs have such extremely different moods, and yet flow together seamlessly. I can't count five artists who can do this as well as Jamie xx. Now that I've arrived to this party, I can only hope he'll be announced as a performer at Wayhome or Osheaga. Wouldn't that be great?! Listen to my favourite track Good Times below.



Accomplishment:
Quite a few this week. First off, I finished learning the entire Hebrew alphabet this week! Isn't that something to feel accomplished about. Next week, we begin reading the Siddur (prayer book) and I can really put my learnings into action. I am also going to attend service at the synagogue where I am learning Hebrew on Saturday. Nothing better than immersion!

I swear to God, after only three weeks of drumming classes, I can feel the beginnings of muscle gain in my upper arms. I remember having those muscles in high school during drumming class, so it's nice to see them coming back in. Who needs dumbbells when you have a big fat drum and two heavy mallets? Not this girl.

And if that weren't enough, I also managed to make a bunch of funky things happen with my Arduinos. I took a trip to Creatron for some LEDs, a speaker, and some other fun stuff, and just look what my roommate and I were able to achieve!

video

What's going on here: a green LED is connected to a potentiometer, which is basically a simple dial. As my roommate's beautiful hand turns the dial, the blinking of the LED will quicken or slow at the same rate. SCIENCE.

We also made a simple melody with the speaker (not shown here). I'm going to work on customizing the code in that one a little more before I show you >:)

Goal:
As I mentioned, I will be attending services at the synagogue where I am learning Hebrew to put my skills to practice on Saturday.

I am also going to take another trip to Creatron for some parts (most excitedly: a programmable RGB LED that I bought without the proper resistors - rookie mistake). My goal is to learn to use a photoresistor (basically a light sensor), and eventually create a tiny sound-and-light display for the party my roommate and I are throwing...sometime soon. These are exciting times.

I am also wrestling with the idea of posting some possibilites of my dad's business card to Dribbble. I strongly believe in the main use of Dribbble being about feedback and iteration, and not the shiny outcomes with no process that people often post. I am just a bit skittish that no one will respond! Maybe I'll get some feedback from people I know first.

And lastly, if that weren't enough, I am signing up for a class at the library tomorrow to get my 3D printing certificate (which I need in order to be able to use the 3D printers at the library).

Full week!

Random Thought:
The widespread love of listening to music provides us with an excellent array of music services that cater to every sub-need users have for listening to music.

For example, the use case of 8tracks is different from that of SoundCloud, even thought both are for discovering and listening to new music. 8tracks doesn't let you skip over more than five tracks at a time, and doesn't show you a track listing. This is reminiscent of mixtapes, which had an air of mystery to them, yet a sense of order in how the creator had shaped the listener's experience for them.

On the other hand, SoundCloud allows the user to browse all sorts of music with no mystery or real order, the experience is more like that of going to a club and hearing whatever the DJ feels like spinning at the moment. Or, you can be your own DJ and curate your own playlists.

They are decidedly different, and yet the goal of each is to explore and find new music. How specific can you get? It's really wonderful.

Inspiration: Studio–JQ
I have been following Jon Quintin on Dribbble for a little while, and I find his designs both refreshing and delightful. I also appreciate how carefully he crafts his brand; I thought the account was owned by an entire studio of people for quite a while. Check out some of his shots below:





And if you love logos like me, check out his collection of logos, marks and icons here.

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