I took a rather long road trip yesterday. I packed up the dog and took off. Three states (in the west, that can be a lot), lots of speed and a couple of stops in Las Vegas. On the road from 9 a.m. to about 12 a.m. That’s a pretty hefty drive.
It allows for a lot of time to listen to music. It also allows for a lot of time to think about things.
One of the things that came thru my mind while spending so much time on the highway was the concept of the speed of information. It’s quite possible today to get information on the opposite side of the world nearly the instant it happens. We can get books, music and also video or possibly movies on demand and nearly instantly. It makes us spoiled brats for get information and entertainment.
That’s the beauty of technology, the instant gratification of something.
The downside is the durability of that information. With increased speed of information and data, comes the decreased life it will live and the increased issue of how to preserve it. Old school media like print, music, or film were married to things that lasted a long time with a little care. You can still see drawings or communication from hundreds or even thousands of years ago because they’re etched into something that doesn’t change much: Rock.
While things like records, or filmstrips are going away, they lasted for many years with simple devices to play them back or view them. With computers and binary data as the transport method to digital media we now face the problem of how to archive that data for hundreds if not thousands of years to come. I’ve already experienced how fragile the digital media is, several times. Despite efforts to back stuff up, inevitably something will go wrong and something gets lost. The other issue becomes the fact that it requires more than a piece of paper to read something. It takes more than hard drive to see a picture or listen to a song. It takes a monitor, a computer or some device to show the information stored on that device.
Future proofing issues are also a problem. If the format that you saved your data in suddenly goes away, you have to find a way to bring it forward. With old school media, the format was the way to experience it.
Thus with increased speed of data comes the decreased ability to save it for the future. That’s an interesting paradox.
Because I’m thinking about that sort of thing and belying the issue, I’m going to roll with a tune that would be very reminiscent of that old style sound but that is obviously done in a very new school way. Ann Sweeten is an instrumental artist creating what sounds a bit like music my grandparents had playing in their home when I was a tot visiting with my parents. There’s nothing wrong with that, it’s likely a great niche to be in as there probably aren’t many people doing it and I’m sure a much older generation that is still longing for it.
I’m finding a tad relaxing to listen to after the hours and hours I spent on the road rocking out.
How do you feel about it?