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This site is really about my take on a number of media, technology and music business issues as I smack into them in my life and my business. Among them are: The challenges of running a small record label in the Music 2.0 (sorry) world, audio and music technology and business, learning and instructional technology and media, and just being a 40 something desk jockey with (now - gulp) 10 year old twins. (Sheesh - kids just keep growing and getting older no matter what you do!)

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Coffee Cup

IMG_0881.JPGI hear that coffee is the new wine - whatever that means. I will say that I have really gotten into coffee this past year. I am no barista and I probably don't even qualify as a coffee geek, but I have put some time into pouring a good cup of joe while supporting fair trade distributors. Currently I am brewing/drinking what so far has to be my favorite source of coffee; Counter Culture coffee. Very fresh, Fair Trade and Organic offerings - check out some of their micro lots. Mmm-Good.

Other good ones: Global Libations in Kutztown Pa, I like their Costa Rican La Amistad, and Alterra Coffee in Milwaukee Wi, thier Dark Sumatra - strong stuff but mmmm good.

Don't forget Joe's Coffee Bar in Philidelphia. Excellent fresh roasted beans and fair trade too!


Entries in eLearning. filtering information (1)


Filtering – Clearing and Breaking through the Clutter. Part 1

When I was the co-director and instructor for a High school recording studio camp, one of my favorite topics when covering the “Art of Mixing” was using EQ and dynamic filters to shape the sound of the project. Filtering out the unwanted frequencies and boosting the frequency ranges that help bring the sonic image to life.

This came to mind when reading Tony Kerrar’s blog post Top 10 eLearning Predictions for 2010 waaay back in January. For his 10th prediction he asked for reader input. On that list of possible # 10’s – Information Overload: “In a world of full connectivity to all information and all people, how do you handle filtering?”

Well this took me down a very fulfilling personal learning path.

Up until January, my personal information filter consisted primarily of RSS feeds and portals like eLearning Learning and a personal portal I set up on Alltop. I boosted key information “tonalities” by following the recommendations from blogs that I learned to trust.  In this way I followed the itch in my brain regarding filters and discovered some additional, and now trusted thinkers that have expanded my personal knowledge network (PKN). Linking from Tony’s blog I found more great posts on the topics of knowledge filtering, crowd sourcing and more.

First, I came across the Innovation Leadership Network blog, written by Tim Kastelle, John Steen and Mark Dodgson. Tim Kastelle’s post Filtering, Crowdsourcing and Innovation lead me to another one of Tim’s posts Personal Aggregate, Filter & Connect Strategies – which led me to Harold Jarche’s excellent blog and post PKM: aggregate, filter, connect. I’ve included Harold’s graphic from his post.

These series of posts really helped me focus both my thinking and my approach to my personal knowledge network or learning e-space. (Thanks all y’all!) Changes I have made include engaging twitter as both a filter and for connecting to others of similar interests - and of course, starting to blog again. I have not yet seriously explored using social bookmarking sites yet – that’s next in the list to see if it works for me.

When using audio filters to shape the sound of your mix, often those filters need to be adjusted as the mix progresses. One technique is to “sweep” the frequencies for either an offending tonality that needs to be removed or magic tonalities that lift the mix from the speakers to the sound space that envelopes each listener. I have found that this technique is also required in my personal information filtering process. The filter needs to be adjusted and tweaked so that you can find new tonalities and remove the ones that are clutter.

Now, the filter topic affects me and many of us working, creating and living with media from another side, how do we gain access to “filters” to get our ideas and creation noticed? This is an obvious issue for my micro label, and is a big topic in marketing and publishing. And this will be the subject of Filtering – Clearing and Breaking through the Clutter Part 2.

What are some of the techniques you are using to clear the clutter as you aggregate, filter and connect?


Shout outs

I mentioned Harold Jarhce’s blog, Tim Kastelle’s blog and Tony Karrer’s blog in this post. If you haven’t already, go check them out and follow them on twitter. You’ll be glad that you did.

I also mentioned the recording camp I used to co-direct. This camp is still being run by my dear friend and business partner Mark Bunce. It is an excellent opportunity for high school students to perform, record, produce, and often write as many songs as they can pull off in an intense week in a studio equipped with the latest Pro Tools rig and one of the best microphone collections in the Midwest. The kids not only get to work on both sides of the studio glass, they learn even more through creative collaboration writing, performig, recording and mixing the tunes.