Technology! FTW?

The internet thinks my husband would be enticed by a reasonably priced security system, with an iPhone app and that cool black new-tech look. The internet is correct.

We now have access to our home even when out of town, and get regular “activity” updates on our phones, our iPads,  our emails, really everywhere. Of course, some of the “activity” is kind of small scale.


We got alerts about this lighting change in the dining room this very morning. Granted, seeing it on a loop is kind of hypnotic, but I imagine that the whole experience will pale soon. It will become “the tech that cried wolf.” But at least Davy can check on things like the power going out (or, can he?).

Not that I’m against technology – I’ve been editing the new piece for ensemble mise-en, which has not only some prerecorded electronic sounds, but also a vocoder for the pianist to use. Based on a poem by Miriam Gamble, “Introducing the Nissan Jet-Pack,” the tech sounds fall into place fairly naturally, I think. We’ll see how tricky it is to put together, with the necessary cueing and all, when the piece gets played in November in Brooklyn.

I’ve also been editing some demo tracks from the opera I’ve been working on with Jennifer Moxley. The recording sessions we had in May went very well, and I’ve been adding the electronic tracks impost, as they say. As with the mise-en piece, in real life there may be more or may be less of the electronic sounds. Everything will depend in the venue and placement of the sound system, who will be assigned the sound cues, etc. For now, the demo track has a bit less electronica than I originally planned, but the editing process has made me more aware of having the singers remain front and center. We hope to be able have these scenes workshopped in Maine next summer, so this was a good prep for that theatrical version.

The last bit of tech that’s part of this summer is a set of speakers that I (not the internet) enticed Davy into purchasing – a Sonos system, which was demonstrated to me by Jennifer Moxley. Thankfully, this technology does not send alerts.

Author: beth wiemann

Beth teaches composition and clarinet at the University of Maine in Orono, ME. She also spends time in Massachusetts with her husband, David Rakowski, and in her Subaru going back and forth on Routes 95 and 93.

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