Me as the RJ for DS106 Radio

2 Stars assignment

Length of audio: 17 seconds

Please click here for the assignment page

I downloaded the Audacity free audio editing software and installed it on my computer.

audacity

Then I downloaded and installed the required Audacity plugin to convert audios to mp3.

Audacity plugin

First I thought of sentences that I wanted to say as a radio presenter. I came up with the following sentence:

“Dear folks, you are listening to love songs from DS106 radio on FM 106. Call us to dedicate a love song to your loved ones. They will love it.”

It was not an issue to record an audio with the help of Audacity. It’s really simple. The challenging part for me came when I had to play two audios simultaneously, first my recorded audio and second some love music from FreeSound. I searched Google for help with Audacity. The search returned the following Youtube video tutorial that proved really helpful.

After watching the tutorial video, it was simple, I put both the audios together and exported them to a single mp3 audio.

radio1

radio2 repairThe above repair tool helped me get some noise out of the sound bit I recorded on my microphone.

Following is both of the audios playing simultaneously:

mixed audios

 

I uploaded the audio to my Soundcloud account. Here is an embed of the soundtrack from Soundcloud.

Insight into radio storytelling

Summary of Dissecting Joanne Rosser, Papermaker

I made the following notes from the Dissecting Joanne Rosser, Papermaker Show that proved useful when I was listening to the radio story and then making a summary of it.

  1. An audio presentation must have simplicity on surface and a lot going on in the background,
  2. Paragraphs arrange the ideas in a meaningful sequence.
  3. Prompt to intro by the interviewer could prove useful when conducting and presenting an audio interview,
  4. A story must have clear beginning, middle and end to it.
  5. Triggering line that will be followed by a sequence accompanied by music and/or other required sounds according to the needs of the scene.
  6. In an interview you start about the beginning, while in other stories u don’t necessarily do that.
  7. Different sound may act like paragraph indents.

Summary of the Radio Story

I have utilized the above points in the summary of the audio story I listened to relate my summary to the Dissecting Joanne Rosser, Papermaker show.

The story that I listened to was from RadioLab

The story: Ghost Machine

The year is 1562 the name of the main character is Don Carlos, the crown prince of Spain, his father the King and a Monk who died around a hundred years ago. The two presenters are interchanging arranging the paragraphs to make a sequence. The follow a specific sequence with a starting line of Nasir being a fond of robots and the sequence adds up.

The part of the story where the falling down of the crown prince of Spain, Son Carlos is illustrated give full information about his injuries to his head as it starts to swell, struck blind. The other audio presenter says “OW” at this point. It acts as a paragraph indent just like explained in the Dissecting Joanne Rosser, Papermaker show.

There is not much of extra music or other audio things happening in the background in the initial part of the audio story so the audio expressions by the second presenter become really important. But as the story progresses, music relevant to different narration is added.

The presenters are asking questions by themselves and then answering them to attract the audience towards their story and make it more interesting.

Opera Music has been added to the part of the story where the presenters are talking about the dreams that the Prince had. I believe that the use of Opera makes the dream look alive.

They have added authenticity to the story by adding audio bits from Elizabeth King, a professor and another contributor Latif Nasser, A graduate student in the history of science department at Harvard. The story tells about a King making a pact with the God. The King promises the God if his injured son is miraculously cured, the king will also perform a miracle. His son cures and tells his father about a Monk in his dream who cured him. The King asks a watch maker to make a machine identical to the description of the Monk. Elizabeth King and Latif Nasser both confirm that there was an actual Machine Monk made and it is still present in a history museum.

The art of audio storytelling

Ira Glass

According to Ira Glass, there are two building blocks of audio storytelling:

  1. Anecdote: According to what I understood from the video Anecdote is a sequence of actions like one thing happening next to other in audio storytelling. This is an example of the whole thought process that must be in a correct sequence to make a sense. A story is originated in a specific sequence and not according to a title line as we traditionally think of. I personally also believed that once you think of a catchy title, the story will follow. But now I believe that there has to be a proper sequence of actions to make a story interesting to the audience. I mean who likes people who jump around when they tell you about whatever happening. There has to be a proper though and a sequence to make you feel like listening. It’s not always about facts. Ira Glass has very finely explained it with a simple example of a story of a guy waking up in the morning and getting off his bed in the following video.
  2. Question/Answers: Second thing according to Ira Glass is raising and answering questions. It’s like finding a purpose to the different things happening in the story. The answers to these questions is the key to the success of the story among the listeners. If the person making the story cannot answer the questions that are raised due to the different parts of the story, the audience won’t buy it in my opinion. I think that there are points where unanswered questions are left in a story but they are to be answered in the next episode if it’s a radio show and keeps the listeners intact to the show. In the meantime, the audience can keep guessing and wait for the next episode.

In the following video, Ira Glass tells how hard it is to find a descent story. I believe that it is important to know that nothing is free in this world. To get your hands on a story that would be loved by the audience, you need to be patient. It could take some time to be able to get a good story out of someone. The storyteller might have to use their innovation and imagination to tie down bits and pieces from another person’s broken and non-sequential story and give it a proper sequence to make it make sense.

Jad Abumrad

This video is a great example of taking advantage what might be lacking in whatever. Yes, it’s kinds of using making your weaknesses as your strengths. In the audio world, we do not have access to the visual information. The audio presenter has to come up with audio description of the things that he/she wants to explain in a way that it imprints a set of visual information in the minds of the listeners. When we listen to a radio program, we have to be able to see through the eyes of the audio presenter, otherwise our interest is lost. This makes the work of an audio presenter both easy and challenging. Easy in a sense that he/she can be innovative in the description to make a visual imprint in the minds of the listeners. Challenging in sense that different people have different thought processes and they would perceive audio information differently than each other. So finding a common ground is a challenge for the audio presenter. Here is the video for my blog audience.

Feedback of my feedback

I provided real feedback comments to other bloggers from my summer class. They were not at all “you are great” kinds of comments :).  I have provided feedbacks to restaurants, retailers, salespersons, online website and many more but have never provided a feedback of my feedback. So this was a challenging blog post to write for me.

I visited the blogs of other course participants. There were different portions of the blogs that I looked in to and liked. I had an opportunity to learn a lot from these blogs. For example I commented on AdrielJBrooks Blog Post  and appreciated the amount of effort that was put into analyzing a video about professional audios production. I personally had a moment of silence and inside my had I had to realize that I have to look into the details of video or print tutorials and not simply scan them for quick solutions that I may need at that time.

I provided feedback to some other blog posts and appreciated the different software tools they have utilized. In fact I tried them myself and the blog post itself proved helpful in understanding different functionalities of the software.

Some bloggers were using online websites to fulfil their designing needs. For example AmandsAvenue Blog Post where Amanda posted about designing using canva.com. I had not used this website before and tried it for an image edit. It was helpful and I learnt different designing tools online.

Overall the experience was fascinating. I provided feedback and went back to my feedback and learnt from it for myself.

Following are few of the other blog posts that I commented on.

WalrusQueen Blog Post

Natalie Blog Post

Richabarnes Blog Post

 

This Oh Yaaa is to Frighten You


This is my first time actually recording anything with Soundcloud. It is not a lengthy piece of audio but the happiness of learning something new is fascinating. It is really simple and interesting to record with Soundcloud and then embed it to a post on WordPress.

 

Reason for No Life on Mars

For this daily create I thought I has to out someone on the Mars. But the question that I asked myself was what that person is going to do on Mars. This is where it struck me. There is no life on Mars and there has got to be a reason for it. So what better reason can there be than the great Chuck Norris. He has cleaned up all other planets but humans still have got to reach out to those planets to confirm it just like Mars.

It’s the Shadow of my Shadow

I took several photos of my shadow but they were blurry due to the fact that it was night time and I could not use a flash as the shadow disappears. I took a photo of my shadow under my room’s light. But at the end it was more of a shadow of a shadow as can be seen in the photo. It’s not as sharp as it should be I guess.

 

International Empty Head Day

I have been a great fan of Homer Simpson since childhood. You will see a lot of him in my blog posts. Here in this photo, Bart Simpson is point out the fact that Homer is brainless. How bad could it be to not have a brain? Why not celebrate it as an international Empty Head Day on each 8th of July?

Week 1 Summary

Setting up the Domain

First I went to Godaddy.com which is a domain provider to look for domain options. I has earlier paid with my credit card for a friend who registered a domain on Godaddy. It came up with many domain options that included my name as a part of it. I finally decided to choose www.taractaronline.com as it has my name and sounds like one from the digital world where everyone is trying to be online. Then I came back to the video about how to register the domain by the class instructor and followed the simple steps to register it.

Commentary on Customizing Blog

I searched Youtube.com for different options on managing a wordpress website. It came up with useful information that helped me a lot. I chose one of the free designs from wordpress called Twenty Fifteen. The reason that I opted for this theme is that is good on eyes, simple and responsive. Then I looked for different plugins. I came up with many ideas. I installed the plugins that I believe would add quality to my blog both from the viewer’s perspective and search engines perspective. I installed the Related Post plugin by Zemanta. This is a unique plugin that also lets you embed related posts from other websites on the internet. I have tried this function on this page: http://taractaronline.com/assignments/visual/gaga-heavens-gate/ . The details of the plugin are available here: https://wordpress.org/plugins/wordpress-23-related-posts-plugin/  .

Apart from the plugins above I installed the recommended Akismet plugin for spam control, a social media sharing plugin by AddtoAny, Contact Form 7 plugin, Plugin for a Photo Gallery, Plugin for Twitter Feed and Yoast plugin for SEO from https://wordpress.org/plugins/wordpress-seo/ .

I have included my social media profiles on the right sidebar of my blog to let others follow me on different social media platforms.

Link to Photo Safari

http://taractaronline.com/photo-safari/

Link to Photo Reflection

http://taractaronline.com/thoughts-and-ideas/be-a-better-photographer/

Link to reflection on Photo Safari

http://taractaronline.com/assignments/visual/15-minutes-photo-safari/

Link to three Daily Creates

http://taractaronline.com/daily-create/daily-create-week-1/

Links to 4 Visual Assignments

http://taractaronline.com/assignments/visual/your-very-own-spubble/

http://taractaronline.com/assignments/visual/gaga-heavens-gate/

http://taractaronline.com/assignments/visual/messy-retires/

http://taractaronline.com/assignments/visual/marijuana-really-bad/

http://taractaronline.com/assignments/visual/can-cats-teach/

Reflection on Visual Storytelling

This is a new subject to me. I didn’t think that it could be so interesting to look at photos from a perspective of a whole story associate to it not just a single image. Colors play an important role when it comes the digital world and each color works with collaboration with another to make a story. I did try to use my imagination while completing the different digital tasks. They were challenging in the beginning but now I feel that I am really enjoying the art of ‘visual Storytelling and hope that I can come up with more innovative solutions to the future tasks.

 

 

Be a better photographer

Rhythm - Repetition
 

I captured this image at the engagement party of my friend, I intended to take the shot of the repetition of the champagne glasses next to each other while the guy pouring in the 3rd glass signifies a movement of the action of pouring from one glass to another. Also the empty glasses in the foreground give a signifying pattern of the pouring that will move from 3rd glass into them.

I took the photo after I had watched the video about Storytelling and visual literacy by Jason Eskenazi. He explains in the earlier part of the video that photography is just like a language. The video is posted at the end of the post. This is what I think is really true when I look at the photo that I later titled “Rhythm”. It’s not just an image for me anymore. It’s a whole moment and a great story behind that moment. It will always remind me of my friends special moment and what happened with those three champagne glasses.

Jason Eskenazi – Storytelling and Visual Literacy from PhotoWings on Vimeo.