Some more thoughts on the RIAA

Posted by: Brian

There have been some comments written in response to the post about Gizmodo’s March boycott of the RIAA, and I would like to add a bit more context to the discussion.

Gizmodo’s boycott of the RIAA has very little to do with DRM…and the RIAA definitely doesn’t exist to help music artists.

The boycott has everything to do with the fact that the RIAA is evil in almost every sense of the word and does not exist to serve the artists in any way. In fact, in most cases, the RIAA blatantly hurts artists from the second they sign their first contract and stifles creativity in the mainstream music industry.

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Gizmodo declares March “Boycott RIAA” month

Posted by: Brian

This is probably long overdue, but the folks at Gizmodo have decided to take on the Recording Industry Association of America by declaring March “Boycott the RIAA” month.

Putting Our Money Where Our Mouths Are: Boycott the RIAA in March

Alright, we’ve been following the RIAA’s increasingly frequent affronts to privacy and free speech lately, and it’s about time we stopped merely bitching and moaning and did something about it. The RIAA has the power to shift public policy and to alter the direction of technology and the Internet for one reason and one reason alone: it’s totally loaded. Without their millions of dollars to throw at lawyers, the RIAA is toothless. They get their money from us, the consumers, and if we don’t like the way they’re behaving, we can let them know with our wallets.

With that in mind, Gizmodo is declaring the month of March Boycott the RIAA month. We want to get the word out to as many people as humanly possible that we can all send a message by refusing to buy any album put out by an RIAA label.

C0ntinue reading…

Gizmodo goes on to say that you can continue supporting RIAA-backed artists during March by still going to see them perform live and buying t-shirts and other merchandise. Also, Gizmodo suggests turning your attention to the many great independent music artists out there.

Those of you who listen to our podcasts are well aware of our feelings toward the RIAA. For those who don’t know our positions, well, we pretty much feel the RIAA is an organized crime syndicate.

So I would like to extend my support to Gizmodo’s “Boycott the RIAA” month and promise not to buy any CDs or music released by an RIAA-backed label during March.

A thank you to our subscribers

Just wanted to post something to show appreciation for our growing base of subscribers to the Technology and the Arts podcast.

Looking at our stats on today, it appears we have reached a milestone…a modest one…but a milestone nonetheless.

The number of subscribers to our podcast has been in double digits every day from Sunday, Feb. 18, through Monday, Feb. 26. That is nine consecutive days! Included in that streak is a single-day high of 21 subscribers on Wednesday, Feb. 21.

Again, these are very modest numbers, but every podcast has to start somewhere and we would like to thank all of you out there who have listened to us tell you about the fascinating connections between technology and art. And, hopefully, when we do become a hugely listened-to podcast, we can thank you again for being there when we were first getting started and helping us get to that point.

So tell your friends about us and let’s try to keep that streak of double-digit subscribers going. Assuming most of our listeners and subscribers are artists or work in the creative arts, it’s a good bet you all know other people who might be interested in “Technology and the Arts.” Help us spread the word!

Once again…thank you.

Planting seeds in the “Sound Garden”

Posted by: Brian

As I mentioned in post a few days ago, Indiana University and the city of Bloomington, Ind., are currently celebrating ArtsWeek 2007, with the theme being “technology and the arts.

The Sound Garden is one of the components of ArtsWeek, but you don’t have to be in Bloomington to experience it…or even participate in it.

About Sound Garden
Sound Garden is the second work in a series of musical installations that explore the relationship of people, location, and audio relative to technology. In this context, people include those who use, visit, listen to, and tend the garden. Location means both physical and virtual spaces, and audio refers to manifestations of sound, silence, noise, and music. The technology explored in this project specifically includes interactive, telematic systems, digital signal processing (for audio), quadraphonic amplification, environmental sensors, and artificial life (A-Life) systems.

How Sound Garden works
Sound material is to be provided by all who visit, whether online or at the actual site. Help cultivate the garden with your own short recordings, samples, soundscapes, and found sonic objects.

Use the Browse button in the web interface to “plant” MP3 files you would like to hear, or “prune” the garden and uproot files with the Remove button. Sound files must be fixed bit-rate MP3s. No WAV or AIFF, no VBR MP3, and no AAC or .m4a from iTunes.

Visit and/or tend to the Sound Garden.

Look/listen for my contribution to the Garden…Trancin.mp3. It’s a techno-style song I recorded shortly after I first installed GarageBand on my old PowerBook a couple of years ago. It might possibly wind up as background music to the upcoming events calendar to be read during the Technology and the Arts podcasts. Aside from that, however, I have no plans for that song so I figured it would make a nice addition to the Sound Garden.

YouTube – Philips: Drag & Draw Technology Dijital Boyama

YouTube – Philips: Drag & Draw Technology Dijital Boyama

This is a quick video of a boy drawing on a wall. Wait a second: he’s drawing with light. It appears to be the same technology that allows SMART boards to work, where a projector and a whiteboard work in tandem to allow changes to appear on screen where a user makes connections on the whiteboard. The business meeting applications for SMART boards are fairly obvious, like making markups on a powerpoint slide, saving those markings to a file for review later, etc., but this has a much simpler killer app – using light as a fun way to make marks on a wall. However, I could see someone like Bill Viola or Bruce Nauman making great use of this as a serious art making tool.

Indiana University’s ArtsWeek celebrates “Technology and the Arts”

Posted by: Brian

No…it’s not what you think.

However, the exact name of our blog/podcast just happens to be the theme of this year’s ArtsWeek being held at Indiana University’s Bloomington campus.

Welcome to ArtsWeek 2007 ~ Technology and the Arts

The energy and excitement are building for ArtsWeek 2007, scheduled to take place from February 21 – March 3. The City of Bloomington and the Indiana University Bloomington campus will share the stage for 11 days and nights of performances, exhibitions, workshops, and other events that are extraordinarily creative, diverse, and inspiring.

If you are in the area of Bloomington, Ind., while ArtsWeek is taking place, you should definitely check it out.

Just a guess, but I think John and I will be discussing this in a future podcast.

(T+A #5) Technology and the Arts: 2/21/2007

(T+A #5) Technology and the Arts: 2/21/2007

In the fifth installment of the “Technology and the Arts” podcast, Tim Westergren, founder of the Music Genome Project and the Pandora online music service, is interviewed. Other topics discussed are Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ “Thoughts on Music” and its impact on the music industry, and several interesting Web sites relevant to technology and the arts. Hosts: Brian Kelley, John LeMasney. File size: 18 MB. Time: 37 min., 35 sec.

Show Notes for Technology & the Arts Podcast #5

In the fifth installment of the “Technology and the Arts” podcast, Tim Westergren, founder of the Music Genome Project and the Pandora online music service, is interviewed. Other topics discussed are Apple CEO Steve Jobs’ “Thoughts on Music” and its impact on the music industry, and several interesting Web sites relevant to technology and the arts. Hosts: Brian Kelley, John LeMasney. File size: 18 MB. Time: 37 min., 35 sec.

Links related to this episode:

  • Watch John Shave – The post on that shows John shaving off all his facial hair for the first time in about 15 years.
  • Madie’s Life in Bear Country – A serial fiction book and podcast by Marsha Loftis, a new friend of Technology and the Arts.
  • Robert J. Novins Planetarium – The Web site of the currently closed planetarium on the campus of Ocean County College in Toms River, N.J. The planetarium is in desperate need of repairs and upgrades, and a recently announced $2.5 million gift to the facility has apparently turned out to be bogus (source: OCC Viking News).
  • Favicons – John’s links to favicon galleries, generators and resources.
  • The Rasterbator – This open-source tool creates huge, rasterized images from any picture. Upload an image, print the resulting multi-page PDF file and assemble the pages into an extremely cool looking poster up to 20 meters in size.
  • CSS Templates – John’s links to cascading style sheet templates and resources.
  • Portfolio Base – Showcasing the best portfolios from around the world.
  • Poems For All – A project of the 24th street irregular press, Poems For All are small poems in small booklets half the size of a business card scattered around in public places like seeds by those who want to see poetry grow in a barren cultural landscape.
  • SampleSwap.orgFree, professional quality audio samples. (But I would proceed with caution before using some of these in your own musical work. – BK)
  • ComicSpace.comComicSpace is a community of more than 12,600 comic fans and creators… hosting more than 3,200 comic galleries… containing more than 30,000 comic pages!
  • – The site of Brian’s longtime friend (and, at various points in time, employer). For more of his artistic work, visit his blog or his recently created MySpace site. (Here is the direct link to the post I mention in the podcast. – BK)
  • Colour By Numbers (English version) – A light installation in Stockholm, Sweden, that can be viewed on the Web and controlled by anyone via telephone.
  • – The Web site of famed rock ‘n’ roll music producer Eddie Kramer, featuring many photographs taken by Kramer of the many artists (including Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, the Rolling Stones, etc.) with whom he has worked.
  • “Thoughts on Music” – This essay, attributed to Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs, was posted on the Apple Web site February 6. In the piece, Jobs asks the major record labels to consider eliminating the need for digital rights management features on tracks sold by online music download services like Apple’s iTunes Store.
  • Pandora – This online music service allows you to use the names of your favorite songs or artists and – using the power of the Music Genome Project – finds similar songs and artists based on your request. Pandora puts this music for you in a personalized, streaming online station. You can create as many stations as you want and you can refine them based on various feedback options.
  • TechCrunch: Social Music Overview – An overview of social music sites, such as Pandora and
  • J0hn’s Pandora Profile – John’s Pandora stations, lists of bookmarked songs and artists, and my most thumbed-up and thumbed-down artists. (John…really…what’s up with giving a thumbs down to David Bowie? – BK)
  • Brian’s Pandora Profile – Brian’s Pandora stations, lists of bookmarked songs and artists, and my most thumbed-up and thumbed-down artists. (Also, note on my profile that the Dave Matthews Band appears on my most thumbed-up AND thumbed-down lists…this is because I keep getting DMB on my Ben Folds station and I don’t think DMB belongs there so I always suggest that it not be played on my Ben Folds station. However, when DMB shows up on my Midlake station, I’ll usually give a thumbs up. I just listen to my Ben Folds station a lot more than the others. – BK)
  • Decoder Ring Theatre – The Web site of Decoder Ring Theatre, founded by Gregg Taylor, who will be our interview subject in our next podcast (March 7, 2007).

Pictured above: Pandora founder TIm Westergren (third from right) poses with his local “street team” in the lobby of the Princeton Garden Theatre in Princeton, N.J., on Feb. 8, 2007. (Brian Kelley/Technology and the Arts)

Monsters done two ways.

DrawerGeeks! is a site showing a collection  of wonderful images. Notably this is more about art than technology, but as art, it’s truly beautiful. It shows drawings that are obviously the work of children, which I write with the greatest respect, as children draw without rules or preconceptions about what a drawing is supposed to be. The drawings are of monsters, full of creativity, vibrant linear movement, and lively with imagination. Beside each of these works is one or more interpreted versions of the child’s drawing which is obviously the work of accomplished illustrators. The meshing of the innovation and imagination of a child’s mind and the brushwork and atmospheric tone of a skilled artist make for a fantastic collection of images. Go check them out right now!

TV of Tomorrow Show 2007 looking for artists

Posted by: Brian

Wow! It has been a busy morning. I have been finding all sorts of events related to technology and the arts, and the TV of Tomorrow Show being held in San Francisco March 13-14, 2007, is yet another one I feel the need to mention here.

In addition, the show is seeking submissions from artists…

Call to Artists
We are seeking artistic interpretations of the theme “The TV of Tomorrow” to be displayed at the show. If you have something you’d like to submit, please contact Tracy at 415-824-5806 or for details…Learn more (PDF)