Getting back to it

I’ve been thinking about direction lately.

Since I’ve spent the last few decades shooting from the hip, you might wonder about my temperature, or whether I’ve taken up recreational drug use. 98.6F and NO, in the obvious order…

More and more, I’m feeling the pull to go back to the things I really enjoy. The mathematics of sound and music, music itself, designing products that attempt to achieve an elegance, or perhaps understated quality that seems largely missing today. There are, of course exceptions to that. It’s difficult to look at the bulk of Apple’s products without coming away with at least some appreciation of the talent and work that went into the designs. For the most part, however they seem to me to lack “soul” – let me try to explain that in the context of an audio product.

An audio product can have a beautiful industrial design, with rigid attention to detail, pleasing lines and good or even great sound. There are products on the market today that accomplish this. What most don’t quite reach is the degree of elegance in form and function that resonate, or harmonize if you will. No harsh honking, no jagged edges, nothing jangles. When you operate the product, it performs exactly as you expect, but adds a depth and texture that makes you want  to “do that again”.

When I designed audio and RF products for a living, it was the closest I ever got to being completely engaged. I wanted to work those hundred-hour weeks, because what I was doing was more important to me than sleeping, or even food. (excepting good Italian, of course)

They say you can’t really go home, but I can’t imagine a better path right now. We’ll see what comes of it.

–jim

 

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