Setting Up Speech on my Mac

MacBook Pro – Setting up Speech

I had previously set up “speech” on my mac to be able to listen to PDF files while I was on the airplane.  I get dizzy sometimes reading on the planes, so I thought it would be a great way to utilize a mac function and get some extra credit for class.  Unfortunately, the voices are extremely boring to listen to on Mac.  I’m not sure if there is a way you can get a plug-in for some other voices.  Like James Earl Jones would be a good one maybe haha.  I seriously fell asleep after about 5 to 10 minutes of listening to “Alex” and “Albert”

I’m using a MacBook pro running Snow Leopard 10.6.8 mac OSX with 8GB ram and an Intel Core 2 Duo processor.  I’m pumping some serious photo editing and music power out of this baby!  Time for a clean up soon though.

It was super easy to set up.  I just went to my dock where all the mac applications most utilized or placed there are located.  This is where you will find Safari, Firefox, Word, Text/edit, etc.  All I did was select System Preferences -> Speech -> change the settings to your preference -> hit apply.

The Screen shot below will show the final page with all the settings I had set up.

I personally did not enjoy listening to the readings.  I found it somewhat useful to listen and read at the same time, but I noticed I read WAY faster than the mac presets could read.  This was super distracting, but  I guess I just read at a higher level than my computer!  (haha- for now)…


Sound Engineering- Digitalizing Audio

Sound Engineering and Digitalizing Audio 101

This is just A sample Lesson Plan for Teaching Sound Engineering and Digital Recording (trying to think of some cool ideas for the project side of how I could suite this lesson for someone who barely knows anything about music, or computers for that matter).

These lessons are meant to assist people who are wanting to learn to :
– Learn the recording process
– Record a song on their own
– Record an instrument on their own
– Compose or Edit a song (without any instruments at all)
– Publish your song on a disk or the web

Lesson Plan

Lesson 1:  Music Overview- Recording/Producing Overview- Why Digitalize Audio?

Lesson 2:  What You Need
2.1- Hardware
2.2- Software
2.3- Instruments
2.4- What the Pro’s use

Lesson 3: Getting Started in Digitalizing Sound
3.1- Connections
3.2- Multi-tracking Interface
3.3- Now What Do I Do With All This Stuff!?
3.4- Do I need instruments to be able to record/compose/edit?
3.5- Tips and Tricks for Getting Started

Lesson 4: Mixing, Mastering, Puzzling, Plastering
4.1- Editing Steps and Tips
4.2- What is Mixing and Mastering?
4.3- How do I make my song sound clean?

Lesson 5: Publishing and Finalization

Digitalizing Audio

Digitalizing Audio

Every single one of us has heard music before in his or her life.  In fact, most of us probably own an MP3 player, stereo, boom box, walkman, instruments, piano, or anything else related to music.  Interestingly enough, which most younger people do not realize (not the college generation, but the young young kids who are 8 years old and have iPhones), is that someone (maybe something) has to actually make  the music become digital.  Bands do not just record music to a tape player or just to a CD and then send it to iTunes, Atlantic records, or anyone really.  That’s impossible, it’s not feasible, and it would definitely not work in today’s age.

There’s WAY more to it than that.  I am just getting passed the beginning stages of conquering learning this feat, and am going to teach the ins and outs of basic music recording/production or… in a more technical and professional way of stating it… I am going to be teaching you the basis ins and outs of Digitalizing Audio.

With the internet boom over the last couple of decades, the music industry as a whole has been entirely reshaped.  We all have heard of the first website that allowed you to upload, download, and share music files you had saved on your computer from CDs.  Essentially, this was the first step in changing the entire music recording and production industry. While Sean Parker, the founder of Napster, is virtually facing a lawsuit from everyone who ever recorded and sold their music.  A little something called “copyright infringement” – “unlawful sales”, and other various business crimes for sharing music with everyone.  Basically this doesn’t allow for the artist and other agents involved in their career to profit from royalties at all.. because it is all for free.  While Napster did get off for most of their charges eventually the company had to claim bankruptcy to get out of all the allegations.

While this won’t be about Napster, Napster has shown the music industry how to succeed in the digital age.   Thankfully for companies like Apple who have developed software like iTunes, selling the final product becomes a lot easier with the internet revolution.

The digitalizing process, the recording process, the production process, are the areas that I will be covering.  How to take a live recorded sound (in a studio or live venue) and turning that into a time mapped easily editable data file.  Then from there, uploading that to iTunes, your website, or wherever to make money from your songs.

The software I will be using is called Fruity Loops Producer Edition ( on a Windows Vista 64-bit computer.  I will show you how to begin to record a song by yourself and artist, how to edit it (in a very basic sense, this could go on for years and years to teach), and how to get your product on the web to promote- or CD.

My Biggest Dream …

Dream Chaser.

A term that was often used in my house growing up.  Chasing your dreams was not a something my siblings and I thought of doing. No.  It was something we did.  Growing up with parents who were both involved with Amway outside of their day jobs in one day hoping to own their own business- or at least have a new revenue stream from selling Amway products to their peers. Whether they considered themselves successful or not was beyond me (I was a very young little lad), but what their kids have picked up along their parents journey through Amway may prove to be more valuable than any amount of money that selling Amway products could provide.

Amway used this term Dream Chaser to get their followers, customers, and sales peoples FIRED UP!  Attending these events when I was a child was overwhelming to say the least.  I can remember the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida (the arena where the Orlando Magic NBA team plays) being packed full of thousands upon thousand of Amway distributors, customers, and leaders, just listening to people speak about their success stories.  While the events were completely over my head, I did pick up vital information about one important skill.  Especially in the area where my dreams are pushing me.

Sorry to be blunt, but I love music.  I love business.  I love entertaining.  But more importantly, I LOVE meeting and hanging out with people.  It was honestly one of the greatest days of my life when I figured out what I want to do.  While being an artists, performing in bands, composing, playing live shows, recording, and playing.listening to music is fun… It also needs a “business” behind the music.  Here is where I come in… or at least, dream of coming in.

Portland has a lush music scene.  It could perhaps be one of the most versatile music scenes in all of the country… but not too many people know this.  Portland has also, a lush website creation/development industry, a lush technology sector, and a lush graphic design and artistic design industry.  (I’m jumping around, but I promise I will tie it all in)  Nashville is a lush country music haven.  How was Nashville started?  How did Nashville become such a huge hub for country music?  Essentially, Nashville started with karaoke bars and other forms of live entertainment for people out on their way in the late 1800s.  From then on, in came the music men finding talent and taking talent to the next level.  Now we see Nashville as the country music capital of the world.

So what do I want to do?  I want to give Portland bands, musicians, fans, and my fellow Portlanders something for them to follow and love about Portland.

Rose City Studios is my business I am working on creating.  What is it?  It is a website- a music management connection, a marketing connection for bands, artists, composers, musicians, venues, and anyone wanting to see what’s happening with Portland music.  Maybe one day it is a bar?  Maybe one day it is a record label?  Maybe one day it becomes something I haven’t even thought of?!

But for now, what RCS does- is connect people in the Portland area with what is happening with their music scene.  People will be able to see interviews with touring acts like Tim McGraw or whomever else comes to town.  Thy will also be able to see what types of bands are playing at what venues in portland on a daily basis.  A magazine – Roce City Monthly (or something) will be sent out to subscribers which showcases the acts which came to town recently, along with which bands are making it big in town and which venues have which specials going on what night.  It’s incredible really what could come of Rose City Studios… I’ve began some work (but the website is far from done), check it out at

The blogging process

Well, what more can I say?  I’m not very good at this whole blogging thing.  but hey, it’s my first time really so I can’t blame myself.  I’m really struggling to figure out what the definitions of things such as “widgets” or more so what they actually do.  It is interesting how much “code” or behind the scenes work you have to do just to create a simple website such as this.

It kind of makes me interested in the coding process of creating websites.  Just viewing this post in HTML view is interesting to see the differnt brackets that are created when you do something like thisIt seems so simple for users of Microsoft Word or Apple Pages (any word editor), but for coding you must create what is called elements, I am learning.  In the code (the HTML5), you write brackets like <i> then you write your word similar to this <i> Italic Text </i> and it will appear Italic Text on a website.  However, it will appear with the brackets in a normal text editor.

It all is so simple, yet seems so complicated.  Granted, I am just scratching the surface and I’m sure that once you get the hang of it the code becomes second nature like a musician reading music (I assume).

I can definitely see though how some people can make very lucrative careers out of blogging.  It is interesting how blogging is such a simple idea (write about a subject consistently and post it to the world wide web) yet so effective for business and other purposes.


My First Post!

Hello world,

This is my first blog post.  It may not seem like much, but there were a lot of interesting steps taken to achieve this first post.  Most of which included signing up for and then activating from a link that was sent to me via email.  Come to think of it, it wasn’t that hard at all to get this blog set up!  I am not too familiar with the wordpress site myself, so I am pretty excited to give this a try.  I may try using this for learning and then eventually pay to host my own site through wordpress.  If I understand and like it.  Check out my site, I have some photo’s up!

I’m sure I will write a lot more information pertaining to a subject of some relevance.  But for now, this post is to just merely tell you that this is, in fact, my first post!