April 25th, 2020
How did I get into electronic music?
Prompted by a conversation yesterday…
I sometimes think probably some appreciation comes from listening to the music in computer games as a kid. (And, maybe, for the more experimental stuff, the screech of the tape loader on the Amstrad… And the dial-up modem later on…)
The first electronic songs that I can remember? I remember my brother had a tape called 'The Ultimate Rave', from 92. So that would have been around when I was 10. I remember the Charly song from that, although the album version is way better. I listened to Experience a lot. He also had 'Rave 92', I still remember a bunch of tracks from that fondly… On A Ragga Tip, The Bouncer, Ravin' I'm Raving.
So then The Prodigy, The Shamen, a bit later the Chemical Brothers. I have a distinct memory at some point of watching No Limits by 2 Unlimited on some music programme when at my grandparents house.
My Mum liked Orbital, so we had a bunch of their early albums around - Snivilisation, Insides, the brown one.
At some point (around college time I guess?), I started getting into IDM. Warp (Autechre, Boards of Canada) and Skam (Jega) being the labels that kicked me off. Where did that come from? I think that was me going off into my own territory at that point, possibly with some assist from Michael. I distinctly remember teaching myself how to make websites while listening to Tri Repetae on repeat. College? Pre-uni?
It's mostly been the more IDM side of things since then.
In between the garden and the stream
I started my wiki with pretty long pages, lots of thoughts bunched together. I didn't think that much about structure, as I just wanted somewhere to chuck my ideas, and it worked great. After building up it up for about a month or so, though, I started feeling the need for something that makes it easier to link concepts together.
There is much to be said for the zettelkasten / tiddler approach. But - also I think the long player is vital too. The occassional connecting of the dots into longer-forms (AKA articles). It's a type of path or a thread of your ideas, made sense of and hand-curated at a point in time by yourself, to share with others. Sitting somewhere between the garden and the stream? It's kind of an entry point into your garden that your share into the stream.
Lately, I've been hitting a rich seam of classic articles out there, 5 years old or more, that would have been lost in time if just in a stream, and replanted or paved over by now if just part of the garden.
(And, side note, some of my wiki pages are still pretty long.)
Who's the audience of your personal wiki?
In a way, in terms of audience, I currently think of my personal wiki as 'me first', although not 'me only'. A personal wiki could be completely private, and that's a totally legit use case. However for me having it public has a big benefit - sharing my ideas and learning from feedback is a motivator to writing for me. But I think of it as 'me first', in that if there was some pressure to make it really polished, I would probably hardly ever write in it.
I think the important thing is whatever motivates you to write, at the same time as removing the friction. That probably changes from person to person.