Messages and Distortion
Imagine You would govern a large country with millions of people living there.
Then, not only a code of conduct or laws are needed for this country to work, but also messages.
A simple message would be: "It is good to be able to defend our country" or "wash your hands when leaving the bathroom".
Why do you need messages? Well, messages are a tool to make your people stop thinking on their own and start functioning automatically in the way you intend.
If you - the governor of the country - think, that many people living in your country are somewhat stupid, then you would more likely rely on very simple messages.
For example: "It's good for the economy and for the wealth of all of us to consume goods" or "Smoking cigarettes is bad for your health" .
And bang, your people are in trouble. This is a contradiction: Its good to consume but its bad to smoke. Distortion is what happens, when two messages are in conflict.
So a third message is needed, an exception, in order to resolve that conflict: "Its good to consume a product but its bad, when the product is a cigarette since it is able to cause illness"
When the message stops working, an exception is needed. Unfortunately life can be complex so a variety of exceptions are formulated:
"Buy a microwave but don't put your pet in there"
"Enjoy your coffe, but caution, its extremely hot"
"Its great to have a 400hp sportscar, but beware of curves"
"Burgers are bad and salad is good, but salad with fried chicken is bad, it can have more fat than the burger"
"You must have that louder exhaust, but use it on the racetrack only"
Since You are not really the governor of the country (call me if you are), lets change the focus now. You live in the country and are bombarded with messages. The messages have been formulated in order to put you into a sleep-state and make you a functioning consuming entity with the illusion of individuality.
Since no message can work for all given aspects of life, you can indeed call them distortions, or in other words:
Distortion happens, when a simple message fails to fit into your view of the experience - you putting your pet in the microwave and being unsatisfied with the end result -. That is Distortion.
Any message can only work for a limited view, and therefore I suggest the following practice:
a) try to identify the messages that reach you from the media (news, ads) and other persons.
b) find the messages that are triggered in your mind by any situation (many ...).
c) forget them all, its time to wake up.
Messages in Audio
There are many messages in the audio field. And many of them unquestioned, like the stuff you have put so much effort into learning in school or university.
These messages have been forwarded by the audio media, manufacturers and individuals.
Let's take a brief look at the message salad:
"It must have flat frequency response"
"The harmonic distortion must be as low as possible"
"1000 Watts is better than 100 Watts is better than 50W is better than 10W is better than 3 Watts"
"The step response of the speaker don't look good on the diagram"
"The cone must be made of a stiff material"
"SACD is better than DVD-A is better than CD, but Vinyl is best. "
Those messages have put you to sleep, so that you can simply sleep-walk into the next store and buy the stuff with the largest numbers: "I'm going to spend 10.000 bucks and I want 1000 Watts, 100 pounds, most zero's on the distortion figure and the damn-highest sampling frequency you stock, sucker ! "
You have already done that and it didn't work out soundwise? You have followed all of the currently popular audio messages, and what you get is: Distortion.
Well, what do You think why You finally stranded here ?
So before continuing with this funny BYOB site, please forget all messages, at least those audio messages, so you don't have to ask yourself (or me) boring questions concerning frequency-plots (yes, its flat) etc. (However, I am always thankful for interesting questions or remarks.)
But, as this site also contains messages - what else -, I would like to stress the point, that I don't want you to unconditionally believe my stuff, I just want you to contemplate about it unprejudiced and awake.
- The experiment decides -
So let's start with the Listening chapter and, have fun...
Altmann Micro Machines Dipl.-Ing. Charles Altmann Erlenstrasse 15 42697 Solingen Germany
phone +49-212-233-7039 email