Episodes 5 & 6

Episode 5

  1. At the beginning of this episode, Krukowski asserts, “the marginal-the rejected-the repressed-is whatever the powerful have decided is of no use at the moment.” What does he mean by this statement? He goes on to ask, “But might it [the marginal-the rejected-the repressed] not be a key to alternate approaches-to art, to society-to power itself?” (“Marginalized” is an adjective that describes a person, group, or concept that is treated as insignificant or peripheral.)

What is he trying to get at with this question? How does music indicate the differences between the powerful and the marginalized?

  • The author here was talking about when he entered the record store where he finds those album and records are left for a long time and nobody is using it until they are expired. Nowadays, people prefer downloading music from the internet or upload the music apps as Spotify, Soundcloud or YouTube rather than going to the music store wasting time picking up CD’s. But music records store is a type of art and there are some people who use it. Krukowski mentioned that by visiting the record store, he discovered a lot of information there. He gave an example such as workers over there can provide you with information about years ago that you didn’t know. What’s more, they can advise you if you’re struggling in finding a specific song or a type of song.
  1. How are the music listening experiences enabled by Forced Exposure different from those that Paul Lamere is working on with platforms like Spotify?
  • Forced exposure started as a scene in the 80s. They listened to all the music they could get their hands on and told the rest of us what they thought was worth hunting down and back before the Internet, it really was a hunt. You had to write a letter with the self-address stamped on the envelope. You are taking for months or even years just to track someone down. Paul Lamere’s ultimate goal is the magic music player that automatically knows what you want to listen to. Instead of having to scroll through millions of songs to figure out what you want to play, you just hit the play button and it plays the right song for you. Around 2005, the way people thought about music recommendation was very similar to the way they thought about movie recommendations, if you liked Jurassic Park, you might like The Matrix. It turns out when you do that with music recommendation, you get assertive of funny problems. First you get that real popularity by music releases, two singers released album in the same week. People would listen to them as they are released at the same week although they are different types of music. People would get recommendation if you like this singer or the other one which is a poor recommendation. Those were a real struggle that people faced before Paul Lamere invented the magic play button
  1. What distinctions does Krukowski draw between being “surprised” by music and “discovering” music? What are the differences between these experiences and according to Krukowski, why are they important?
  • Suspired is not the same as discovered. Surprise in not really a helpful thing. He used a good example saying, “Does google want to surprise us when we use it to search for something?” “Does Facebook wang to surprise us when we are looking for our friends? They want us to find what we are already comfortable with.” Google give us the right answers. Facebook connects us to the people we already know. Same as music recommendation services, wants to give us the music we would like. On the other hand, discovering means that you enter another world. It may be confusing at first, even overwhelming. Spotify provides music without your participation. The algorithm will know what you want. All of the apps or websites’ data are collected about you and are trying to shape the world of information that you find inside their programs. You find the answers you want to the question you wanted to ask. You find the opinions of those who already agree with yours. You find the news that reinforces the opinions and the others too.

Episode 6

  1. According to Krukowski, what is noise? What is signal? Why are these distinctions important?
  • “Noise is the signal that you’re not interested in” says Alicia Quinel of Harvard Medical School. To doctor Alicia, signal is whatever sound we are trying to pay attention to. A good example was mentioned, if you’re in a crowded restaurant with your partner who’s trying to say something across the table that you’re trying to hear, that’s a signal and everything else in the restaurant is noise. On the other hand, if somebody on the other table says something that has interest to you, as your ears drop, that voice becomes the signal and whatever is being said at your table is now the noise. We are very skilled at shifting our attention from signal to signal focusing and refocusing on different sounds in the environment. All of this are considered to be noise until we decided to focus on what’s trying to be said, which is considered to be signal.
  1. What central idea about noise does this episode convey? Why is it significant?
  • Making any of signal or noise is an example of noise which result in the production of different sounds. Noise is described as any unwanted sound or a sound which is added to the original signal that is judged as loud voice and disruptive to hear where it begs for your attention to get the information. The difference between sound and noise depends upon the listener and the circumstances. If somebody got a music without any physical instrument, it would sound good, but if this person started combining too many music together it would be annoying. it can be hazardous to a person’s hearing.
  1. How does this episode relate to other episodes? 
  • This episode gives us the best invention ever which is the magic music play button. This button is used to play the song you need without even trying to search for it and waste a lot of time. What’s more, noise has been reduced in the present time. For example, for now anybody who doesn’t like a conversation or something can put on the headphones and listen to whatever they are excited in and ignore the outer environment and distractions.

1 thought on “Episodes 5 & 6

  1. tenzin w paling

    Hi Yara, I agree about vast knowledge the sales person has at record store. The recommendation and help you get from sales person at brick and motor record store far out weighs from the recommendation you get from machine through their complex algorithms. The whole emotions and proximity effects are alive in the help you get from sales person but absent in recommendation you get from apps like Spotify and others.

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