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NEWS UPDATE ... from Hayne Davis ...
January 21, 2024... February 9, 2024 ...
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January 21, 2024 - DaviSettling In 2024 I February 9, 2024 - DaviScariest ... A I or R I ? I
TO DAVISOUND MAIN INDEX TO DAVISOUND NEWS ARCHIVES
February 9, 2024
'' DaviScariest ... A I or R I ? '' ...
Before I start this month's little ''diatribe'' ...
Maybe you wonder sometimes, as I do, just how many people bother to read these monthly updates of mine. I have joked in the past about my ''limited audience'' (faithful albeit comparatively limited) saying something like ...
''Thank all of my readers for joining me here this month (BOTH of you!) ...''
Well, in all honesty, it's not quite THAT limited. In fact, according to our hosting stats (last month totals shown below), this News Updates page (News.html) AVERAGEs right around 1000 or so hits per month, That means some months a bit more and some months a bit less but right around 1000 or so per month averaged over the year. For example, last month we had 1,045 visits to the News Updates page whereas the visits to DaviSound.com (the main Index-Welcome page) totallled 3,829. Some months greatly lower the average while some far exceed the average (example- my little ''audio biography'' post last year totalled 2,426 to date). A lot of that, no doubt, had to do with sharing and, perhaps, a few re-reads as not all were unique hits when broken down by referring sites/pages.
None of these totals are impressive for the worldwide web if you are looking for click traffic as your priority...and, it is QUITE a decrease from a few years back when we were getting MANY thousands of hits per month. But, for the times we are in (something about what I will be getting to here a bit later), and the way in which DaviSound fits into it (along with my own situational delays with any real progress on the audio projects front the past year), I am happy, even somewhat surprised, to see even this much repeat traffic to our little corner of the Internet these days.
Here below is a partial view Screenshot , from our hosting stats area, of the visits to our web pages during January, 2024, totalled at the cut-off date/time shown. The initial site visitor page (Index.html-not shown in this '' / '' category) received 3,829 requests (''hits''). The others are listed in order of the number of requests (''hits''). Again, I was somewhat surprised to see that this News page received the most visits of any with 1,045.
One thing that I find most intriguing is the fact that almost a fourth of our repeat traffic to the News Update page seems to be from visitors who are in no way connected with, or have any great interest in, pro audio. I have no idea what that means but for whatever your reasons for visiting and reading my ramblings on a regular basis, I am glad to have you! Since this particular update waxes more toward the ''philosophication'' side of me, I am guessing that this minority of visitors will appreciate this month's edition moreso than our audio faithful who come here hoping for some substantive news about DaviSound audio endeavors (and there WILL be a lot more of that in the months ahead, I promise!).
I mentioned just last month, as the new year kicked off, that I would vow to keep things on a purely positive note....ALL ABOUT POSITIVE this year was the opening theme just last month... and not wander too far afield with my ''DaviStatements'' (the web page on our site by that same title has now been superceded by these regular monthly News Updates so there have been no further additions to that site area in quite some time). However, as I approach my 76th birthday on the 20th of this month, I guess old ingrained traits are a bit too hard to break at times. I suppose the old ''editorialist'' in me just can't help but editorialize a little now and then any more than I can stop my other ''habits'' of the past decades. Newcomers to the site may not realize that I wrote broadcast editorials for many, many years for broadcast on my stations as well as for some of the many others that I programmed or consulted for. Nowadays, this little forum is my ONLY ''broadcast station'' so this is where I ''vent'' from time to time. And... this edition will be one of those ''times to times''!
The rumor bees are buzzing all around us these days and the big buzzword is ''A I'' ...''Artificial Intelligence''. I have had my attention called to this frequently the past few months and recent email correspondence with a very talented lady writer underscored my concerns about how it is affecting, or will affect, EVERYTHING in the world around us heretofore.She was commenting on how it was going to ''replace all the creative writers'' and creative works as a whole. I reminded her that, indeed, it was already happening and how it sickened me to read in a recent issue of RADIO WORLD magazine articles by/about some radio programmers who are using artificial intelligence to not only write their spot commercials, but to voice them and produce them as well!
A good while back I ''editorialized'' a bit about this already...not exactly ''A I '' per se but the way that digital software was now taking much of the creativity out of audio and video productions. This new digital ''means to an end'' approach by so many in today's industry is very much contradictory to my, and my peers', lifelong motivations for doing media productions, that being the need to create. As the old saying goes....''It's not so much the destination that is important but rather the journey itself''! Since the earliest days of mankind, many of us have always felt this need to create something from scratch starting with a part of ourselves from within and utilizing whatever tools and materials at our disposal to replicate our inward emotions outward to a final piece of ''art'', hopefully. Sadly, many of today's latter generations will never fully experience this form of creative satisfaction as their only artistic ''expertise'' comes from their ability to manipulate some software program.
In my earliest days of recording and producing broadcast promos, jingles, and commercials, I always felt a bit ''ashamed'' of my humble little studio compared to the ''biggies'' I was competing with. The big names for station promo jingles in those days were PAMS of Dallas and Pepper-Tanner of Memphis. Both of these were huge outifts with endless resources and state-of-the-art facilities. Meanwhile, my limited budget, one-man operation was a small, self-built cement block building in the back of my parents' property in a small S.C. town. When I started landing some big-time radio station clients some of them would, occasionally, want to come and visit and they would always talk about how they were anxious to see my studio and all the gear that produced these wonderful productions. Well, in those earliest days, when I was operating with a few cheap tape recorders and makeshift mixing consoles in a small 10 by 14 foot room, I would always find an excuse to postpone such visits since I knew (at least I THOUGHT I knew!) that what they would discover would be so far below what they expected to see, or what they were used to seeing elsewhere, it would cause them to scurry away never to return!
Now, looking back, instead of feeling ''ashamed'', I am most proud to have acheived what I did with those humble tools and the fact that I could use what simple gear that I had, doing countless overdubs from one machine to another, (no multitrack machine in the beginning whereas the competition all had 8 and 16 track machines at the time) and get a competitive sound worthy of playing in the same ballpark with some of those biggies (albeit for a much lower fee). Of course, it wasn't but a year or so until I started expanding the little facility adding more rooms and gear and, of course, learning to build my own gear that would eventually equal, or surpass, that of the competition. But, even though we made upgrades, we still mostly always operated with simpler recording gear than our competitors ... when I went to 4 track they all had 8 and 16 tracks. When I went to 16 tracks they all had 24. I finally started building my own 24 track recorder from a converted Ampex video machine in the early 80's but, by this time, we had become so popular for our custom built audio gear that my emphasis had shifted away from ''creative custom recording services'' to ''creating the tools that create the art''.
The point here is, nowadays ANYONE with a computer can sit ANYWHERE and turn out most ANYTHING and the only distinction is not how artistically talented and creative you are but, instead, how clever you might be at manipulating programmed software! And, now, with this advent (THREAT) of Artificial Intelligence taking over all aspects of the media ...in the words of one of the Think Tank specialists who helped to create this new monster, ''God help us. Now we have REALLY F****D UP!''.
So, yes indeed my comparatively few readers, I am ''DaviScared'' by this new threat and, believe me, it is a THREAT. One can make jokes about it, ignore it (I will get to ''ignoring'' a little further on!) or jump on the bandwagon (as most will try to do I am sure from what I am seeing....likely the low-talent types to begin with will be the first to dive headfirst onto the wagon). But, make no mistake, this is going to SERIOUSLY change our world from here on and, from my perspective, only for the worse!
Now then, having said all of that, there is something else that I am even MORE ''DaviScared'' of (and I don't really scare all that easily so I use the term''scared" in the sense that I am gravely CONCERNED). That something else is what I am calling ''R I ''. ''R I'' (my own term) ,,, stands for ''REAL IGNORANCE'' (as opposed to ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE). I have mentioned many times in my ''mini-torials'' that the dumbing down and brainwashing of Americans that I have observed and experienced over the past two decades especially, is so unbelievable to me that I OFTEN tell my wife (all TOO often in her opinion, I am sure!) that I feel I am living in an alternate reality and it is closely akin to the TWILIGHT ZONE! I just can NOT get used to seeing and hearing what is out there all around us these days and, to me, it is truly mind-blowing. I can certainly understand how there is a huge movement out there these days away from mainstream society with so many of the thinking few that's left choosing to get away from everything and become nomads or live isolated somewhere far off-grid.
Now ''IGNORANCE'' (born out of the root word ''IGNORE'') does NOT necessarily coincide with ''STUPIDITY''. It bascially means that if you are ignorant, you are simply IGNORING significant facts of reallity that exist all around you. Now this ignorance can be DELIBERATE (voluntary) or it can be NON-DELIBERATE (involuntary). There are all-too-many IGNORANT Americans nowadays and to a great degree, it seems to be largely CHOSEN ignorance. Many seem to have that old ''My mind is made up so don't bother me with the facts'' mentallity. If they choose to watch a newscast to learn what may be going on around them, they typically choose ONE news network instead of sampling them all and it is usually the ONE network that spits out the propaganda that they have become accustomed to and that they now crave to feed their addiction.
This has now become so bad in our country that many well-meaning, otherwise good people, have become BRAINWASHED (yes, I mean BRAINWASHED in the truest sense of the word!) hate mongers willing to turn against their own friends and family if you don't join their CULT! Tell me this isn't ''scary''...something to be MOST concerned about! Those of us outside looking in at all this absurdity just can not believe it can be possible! How could this become so rampant in the United States Of America? Would it make any difference to any of these propaganda addicts if they knew what their propagandist thought of them? I doubt it (''R I''). I once heard the head of one of these networks tell a prospective advertiser, ''You really ought to advertise on MY network...my viewers are so gullible they'll buy anything''! The principle on which it was founded no doubt!
The United States Congress nowadays looks like a Saturday Night Live skit from days of old yet nowadays it is REALITY! (''R I'')! And, many of us ponder which is the scariest trend - the idiots elected to congress or the morons who elected them! We wonder how it is possible for so many voters to accept, and in some cases support and enable, the shenannigans of those they elected simply because they have hijacked their always aligned political party. Can't you still be loyal to a political ideology yet at the same responsibly reject some wacked-out cult leader and the surrounding hypocrites who have simply slapped on your party label? Then, the few brave and sincere states-persons from their political party who have nobly done their duty and stood up against this dangerous nonsense find themselves exiled, threatened, or at best, IGNORED (''R I'').
If you were to write a TV, or movie, script about something like this in the old days (old days here meaning just a few decades ago) then EVERYONE would expect an ending where the ''good guys'' (those courageous few just referred to) would ''win in the end'' with everyone coming to their senses just in time to recognize and reward them for their TRUE loyalty to the constitution and law and order (where is James Bond when we need him?). Unfortunately, in these days of dominant ''R I '', I don't see this happening, And, yes, it is VERY CONCERNING....okay, let's just admit it is actually very SCARY! And what is so scary is that REAL IGNORANCE causing all of this...so many ''voters'' willing to IGNORE and accept things like the January 6th assault on the capitol of the United States which. to my old eyes, was the WORST thing I have ever seen happen in this country...and I have seen a LOT over seven decades! How can ANY sane, moral person ''overlook'', or IGNORE ("R I") something like that....and that is just one of MANY atrocities being swept under the rugs of their ''R I'' mindsets.
I know that I have always vowed to keep political views and stances out of my little forum here but nowadays that is just so hard to do when all this ''R I" surrounding us threatens our very existance as a true democratic society! The old ''head-in-the-sand'' approach is just not going to work anymore so we have to TRY to bring some sense back into the nonsense for EVERYONE's sake! ALL of us, I think, need to converse, speak out, and be willing to listen as well as inform. This now goes way beyond politics! All my readers in other countries may find it a bit difficult to fathom that we now have a significant section of our United States population who actually believe that the world is flat, that the man-made climate crisis is a hoax, that ''space lasers'' start forest fires, that the world is only 5,000 years old, that celebrities are in cahoots with a ''deep state'' political system that can ''rig'' an entire football league and Super Bowl outcome, and that members of their opposing political party are pedophiles or/and ''reptillians''! And, what's worse, some of them are sitting in the U.S. Congress right now! Furthermore, if they had their way, they would force their mindlessness on the rest of us!
Now, think about it....
When you mix all this ''R I'' with ''A I''...then you REALLY AND TRULY HAVE A HELL OF A SITUATION. Most of these wackos already live in some sort of alternate reallity where EVERYTHING is wrong with those on their ''other side'' while ANYTHING is right with all on THEIR side. FOR GOD'S SAKE LET'S ONCE AND FOR ALL BEGIN TO PUT TRUTH AND COMMON SENSE ABOVE POLITICS AND POLITICAL PARTIES BEFORE IT IS FAR TOO LATE! But, then, how do we do that when those I just mentioned are not capable of employing common sense or even recognizing the TRUTH? My grandfather always said, ''He who argues with a fool is just a bigger fool''...his way of saying that you simply can't reason with the unreasonable. I'm afraid that is just where we are now in this society and there just may not be a solution. I can NOT echo the words of our president who claims that he honestly believes our best days are ahead of us. I truly wish they were. But I am afraid that this newest edition of ''artifical intelligence'', and how it will interact with the already dangerous "real ignorance" all around us, just might be our final undoing!
So, how do I end something like this on a positive note? Good question! In my younger days, I simply employed some of my own ''R I '' and mostly ignored politics as something that would always be corrupt to a large extent (by the very nature of the self-serving types it largely attracts) and something that was beyond my control anyway. As for my own ''political leanings'', in my young adult days I was very much the moderate conservative like most in my immediate surroundings. But, I helped plan campaigns and write and produce advertising for both camps on occasion.
Many will be surprised to learn that I even coached my old friend, Lee Atwater in ways to manipulate a media audience (Lee was later to become a key figure in the national Republican Party under the Reagan administration and is often credited with starting the ''bad boy'' politics that mushroomed and plague us to this day. Lee later admitted regretting some of this however and most of his tactics could be considered ''good natured'' compared to what we see today!). I remember passing along the term ''Sheeple'' to him during one of our rap sessions. This rather derogatory term had been coined by my old mentor Dave Hedrick which he often used to refer to a radio audience that he wanted to manipulate. Lee, of course, loved it. Later this term was picked up by Karl Rove and utilized behind closed doors throughout the Bush administration.
As the years passed and I observed the political right becoming more and more extreme, and attracting more and more undesirables, I found myself disassociating myself from that camp entirely. By the time Rush Limbaugh came along and helped to ruin AM radio, along with the minds of most of his audience, I was completely disgusted! As the years went by, I began to observe that the FEW politicians willing to serve for the RIGHT reasons were usually on the LEFT side of the aisle so I just inherently migrated in that direction.
In those earliest days, those simpler times, we did NOT have the rampant corruption and ignorance all around us that is so prevalent today. We did not have the dangerous, giant network propaganda machines that exist today. And, we did not have the abundant ''R I '' of it's vulnerable audience which is not only threatening our political system but our society as a whole and, indeed, the very future of the planet itself! The stakes are higher than they have ever been and now with ''A I'' in the works joining up with ''R I '', even those few who WANT to may not be able to tell fact from fiction, or reality from made up ''alternate reality''.
I began this ramble because of my concerns for the future of creative media but couldn't help but morph into my greater concerns for the future of EVERYTHING ELSE! So, how do I now step back and say ...''Oh well, in spite of all of this, please join me here next month when I will, again, bring my focus back to my nice new workroom and all the audio related work at hand.''? I guess by doing just that. We still DO have to focus on the positive things left around us and remind ourselves that at least about HALF of our populace is still sane and seeing the same positives. We MUST keep a daily watchful eye on all the chaos but, at the same time, try to maintain our positive outlook for all of the good things that still occupy our lives and which hold some promise for a brighter future.
In my little corner of the world I have pretty well settled into my brand new little work room (certainly can NOT get another stick of furniture in!) and will be spending many long days and nights in the coming weeks finishing moving in, organizing parts and materials to both the new room cabinets and parts bins as well as to the adjoining storage sheds.
This month's post is EARLY once again (normally coming around the end of the month) so I will wait until next month to post a few photos of the new environs (some of the finished, empty room photos posted last month, scroll below). It has taken a LOT of work to get this far with the new setup but I am VERY proud of the result. I feel it will definitely allow me to be much more productive than I have been in many years as everything has been designed and built with a specific purpose and function in mind. I am looking forward to spending MANY productive work days here in the months/years to come and serving all of you who still believe there is a place for well designed ANALOG audio components in this crazy world!
(BTW- Have you heard the news lately about the resurgence of ANALOG computers complete with new forms of non-volatile analog memory in the works? That ought to be interesting to say the least! 180' away from digital ''A I''....or is it? We'll see!)
If you have made it this far with this post I truly do appreciate you and thank you! I am so pleased that you are one of our average thousand or so readers who come by for more ''punishment'' month after month! Hopefully there will be brighter days ahead for us all in every direction as the year unfolds ... we must have HOPE and do what we can!
So, until next time, do what YOU can, keep the faith and please join me here next month for news that will, hopefully, be more uplifting!
PS- Just as I was finishing up this edition, I received an email from a young inquiror wanting to know if I could explain the term ''flanging'' and where it originated....seems the effect was showing up on his digital processor and he wondered how it was acheived back in the ''old days''. Since I used this technique quite often with radio productions, and even once or twice in some of my own music productions, I can certainly clue him in ...which I will do in the next edition!
As always I ask you to please overlook any typos/misspellings...I dash these updates off in the old Windows Notepad text editor which does not employ any spellcheck and, while I do proof-read a time or two, something always seems to get by me that I miss!
Another final afterthought, in regard to web traffic as we were addressing above, our newly expanded YouTube channel is falling FAR below the website in terms of views for whatever reason. We certainly can't count on the biased Google algorithm for much help so I hope many of you will find the time to check it out. I do believe most of you will find it increasingly interesting in the weeks and months ahead when time allows us to put up more videos (I'll be putting up the first of many forthcoming old radio airchecks very soon!). Your subscription to the channel would be most appreciated! One of the last uploads is a nice little presentation ''Ode To Wood'' featuring our exclusive Boris Karloff narration and selected photos from our website. I do hope you will check out this little piece here -
DaviSound's Ode To Wood-YouTube
January 21, 2024
'' DaviSettling In 2024! '' ...
Another new year is rolling along and it's time to, once again, start a new ''DaviSlate'' with our monthly news update posts while relegating last year's entries to the News Archives area.
I was thinking of calling this one ''DaviSettling'' and ''DaviSkeptic'' ... with the latter referring to my cynicism regarding the outlook for the new year with regard to the state of the world situation (the climate situation, the political climate situation, the continuing dumbing down and brainwashing of Americans, etc. etc. etc.). But ... I decided to spare you that rant since I promised my wife (and myself as well) that my new year's resoluiton would be to try and maintain a positive point of view and rediscover my old ''eternally optimistic self '' of days gone by.
I certainly do have a lot to be positive about since, among other things, I am FINALLY finished with constructing my new work room and starting the ''SETTLING IN'' process this month! It has been a rather long, hard journey to turn my third of the new metal out-building in our back yard into my new work room (office/engineering work space/mini-studio) these past six months. However, the room is now ready for moving in! That ''moving in'' and ''settling in'' process will also take a bit of time and doing since I have to haul all my furnishings (cabinets, parts bins, tools, gear etc.) in multiple loads from my old home work room and try and crowd them all into the new 9 x 12 room or the adjoining storage shed next door. Much of the storage shed haul was accomplished in late fall but there will still be more to come.
Here are some phone camera (lousy) snapshots of the just fully completed room. I had to document this wonderful ''emptiness'' since it will become all-too cluttered in the days and weeks ahead, no doubt, as I try and fit everything into it that has to be there. Some may find my color scheme and layout a bit weird (wife, Annette, says it reminds her of an old farm house...an analogy that I like!) but it was what I came up with based on what was available within my limited budget!
This is the view from the entrance doorway. The electronics workbench will go under the window. The corner cabinet/closet is for access to all electrical as well as a mini utility closet.
This corner will house a roll-out storage cabinet hutch
with additional storage in the corner behind it.
This is a view of the room entrance
squeezed up against the other window.
My very first piece of furniture! This old writing desk belonged to my mother (and before that her sister) and was in my childhood home during my adolescent years and until my mother passed away and the house sold. Since then, it occupied my work room in our Newberry home where I used it as a ''computer desk'' (I added the lighting). I'm looking forward to using this nostalgic ''antique'' piece as the desk for my laptop and paperwork. It was just brought into place this afternoon so the room is already starting to feel like home ! A matching corner hutch will follow tomorrow in the corner to the right, pictured above.
The back wall and corner, not shown, will house more cabinetry, shelving and a small recording/dubbing setup for the ongoing archiving of my old audio tapes to digital. The complete moving/set-up process will be ongoing and I will, no doubt, be ''DaviSettling'' in for quite some time. However, I do expect to begin working in there very soon along with the moving in and organizing. Once I get the work bench and my parts bins squared away, I will then be bringing in the several, pending DaviSound projects to a large, center work table where I look forward to getting back to them in the old ''work rotation'' fashion I once used at the old DaviSound facility.
So, yes, there is a WHOLE LOT to be positive about and look forward to for the year 2024 and beyond! I invite all of you to join me here each month as I try and document most of it
Therefore,with all the optimism I can muster for the coming year, I wish you all a most Happy New Year 2024!
My Best Efforts,
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