Over 10 million of them have been sold, and it seems like everybody has one. Some are pink, some are green, some are blue, some are black, but most are white. Owners caress them, lovingly running their fingers back and forth across "my precious." Some can hold 10,000 of your favorite songs, and they'll follow you wherever you go.
They are not so common any more, but I'm sure you remember used record & CD shops. Now imagine them without the bricks and mortar. Or the bins. Or the records and CDs. Say what? Welcome to the biggest music-industry brouhaha since Napster.
The iPhone has been stealing all the media buzz lately, but what about Apple's other radical offering, iTunes Plus? As I wrote in my July/August column (also available at soundandvisionmag.com), Apple and EMI have decided to sell music without any Digital Rights Management. They're charging extra for those downloads ($1.29 each vs.
Sure, before you head to the beach, it’s imperative to slather on the sunblock. (Note: as far as I know, this is the first time I’ve used “slather” in a written sentence.) Everyone knows that too many UV rays are bad for you, and that SPF is the remedy. But what about another kind of ultraviolet?
When José, the Fed Ex guy, rings my doorbell, the transaction is well scripted. He gives me the box containing the Next Thing to Review, and I give him the box containing the Last Thing I Reviewed. One glance at the Next Thing box tells me which link in the audio/video chain I'll be scrutinizing for the next few weeks. Like I said, it's highly choreographed.
Neil Young likes to criticize things: war, environmental abuses, indifference to homelessness, the plight of small farmers, Presidents of the United States, etc. Name an activist topic, and you can probably find several well-crafted lyrics, ranging from subtle to confrontational, on the issue. Neil Young is also critical of sound quality. Highly critical.
It is the job of engineers to push the envelope and design the products of the future, not the products of today. When the first Compact Disc players were on the drawing board, 780-nm lasers were extremely expensive, but engineers anticipated that low-cost versions would soon become available. They bet right: cheap laser modules were perfected just before the CD format’s launch.