Synthesis + more things

5 minutes estimated reading time


Synclavier Regen Synthesizer Introduction – Synthtopia – the old New England Digital Synclavier was a floor to ceiling rack full of equipment paired with a monitor mouse, computer keyboard and musical keyboard. Synclavier was an early digital synthesiser and then evolved to create the first digital audio workstation, featuring digital tapeless recording, digital effects, sequencing of instruments, sampling and synthesis. By 1980, the Synclavier 2 was launched. Then you started to increased adoption including Michael Jackson for this Thriller album and across the US film industry for sound effects work.

Michael Hoenig 1987
Producer Michael Hoenig circa 1987

The sampling and synthesis of Synclavier helped define the sound of 1980s record production for a wide range of groups from the era including

At the time there was concern that the digital synthesis and sampling of the Synclavier would put live music out of the business, so many concert halls in the US banned the use of the Synclavier.

Mirage FM: how patten created the first LP made entirely from AI sounds | Dazed – Pattern’s album brings synthesis forward to the present day. A mix of crude pads and textures hint at how machine learning can change synthesis over time. At the moment, record labels are looking to restrict the use of machine learning, which they view as a similar threat to the MP3 format of the early 2000s and digital sampling from the early 1990s. Like earlier technologies, they will eventually make their peace with machine learning based synthesis and use the opportunity to further gouge artists and creators


Coty Group Global Chief Brands Officer Stefano Curti on plans to triple its China business through a strategic shake-up 


An in-depth look at China’s consumer electronics market | Daxue Consulting

Outsourcing of internal security operations


The Sustainable Fashion Communication Playbook | UNEP – UN Environment Programme – interesting that this doesn’t look at the quality of clothing: making better longer lasting items

Hong Kong

Three years of National Security Law in Hong Kong: Farewell “special status”? | Mericsthe NSL has severely reduced the rule of law in Hong Kong by granting the government powers to circumvent the courts and thereby deny defendants a fair trial. The case of media entrepreneur Jimmy Lai illustrates how this presents a risk to businesses and their property rights. The Hong Kong government froze Lai’s majority of shares in his company Next Media, which led to its liquidation and the end of the pro-democracy newspaper Apple Daily. The case is highly political and does not reflect the situation of most businesses, but it does show the power the Hong Kong government can wield over business.  – German think tank on the NSL

‘Happy Hong Kong’: free coffee, discounts and 1-minute shopping spree up for grabs in HK$150 million retail promotion to get people smiling | South China Morning Post – but what doe these promotions do to brand? Byron Sharp’s work indicates that price promotions likely damage brand over time


Facing skills gap, Japan to train teenagers in battery tech – Quartz 



Rolex and Patek Philippe Prices Drop Amid High-Interest Rates and More – Robb Report


Edelman Cutting Roughly 240 Employees Amid Reorganization | Provoke Media – Edelman is just the canary in the coal mine. Beyond (part of Next Fifteen) is closing down its London office, smaller agencies have been going to the wall and another of my former agency alma mater WE are laying off just under 5 per cent of their headcount. I don’t remember this happening during the 2008 financial crisis. There are likely to be several factors blamed:

Rising interest rates combined with already lean cashflow has driven some agencies to the wall

  • Declining economic conditions has resulted in declining marketing budgets
  • Some agencies (Edelman being a case in point) bulked up on talent, expecting a fast exit from COVID driven decline
  • Brands are getting shaky on the commitment to brand purpose which will hit a lot of below the line agencies particularly hard
  • More marketing spend is being spent on innovation with an expectation of cost savings down the line (particularly in production and across B2B marketing)

Brand Salience, Brand Availability and Other Metrics — Purdie Pascoe 


Rheinmetall Presents Mobile Smart Factory for Mobile Production of Spare Parts for Battle Damage Repair – Soldier Systems Daily 


Russia’s digital scramble to control the ‘coup’ narrative – Coda Story


“Russian spies are blowing up one by one:” Russian hockey player arrested on spy charges in Poland – War Is Boring 

Russian Spies, War Ministers Reliant on Cybercrime in Pariah State | Dark Reading – lacking on the ground options to attack critical infrastructure due to decline in human spy network


AI in chip design: Where does Cadence stand? | DigiTimes


China approved 6 GHz band for cellular services – PingWest

Hackers attack Russian satellite telecom provider, claim affiliation with Wagner Group | CyberScoop

Web of no web

Google reportedly gives up on making AR glasses—for the third time | Ars Technica


MikroE welcomes back IrDA with Click board | EETimes – IrDA was first introduced in 1994 for consumer equipment but has since been used in areas such as power systems where a light-based system is safer or RF is problematic. It’s slow with data rates up to 115kbit/s at 1 metre. The reality is usually much slower. I used to use IrDA for transferring business cards of a few KB each which would take 30 seconds or more