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by Greg Hill
Last update March 31, 2015
Nashville Music City Center, July 17-19, 2014
by FreshBaked Staff, July 17, 2014
NAMM is the National Association of Music Merchants - all of the companies that sell and service anything to enable people to make music. Music merchants are gathering this week in Nashville to see and discuss new products directly with the manufacturers, while also networking with their peers, and attending educational sessions.
Accompanying this serious business is a three-day jam organized by the manufacturers of musical parphernalia to show off their wares and give a lot of new and sponsored artists the chance to impress a powerful audience. The music will be going all night during the show, not that it doesn't always go all night in Nashville anyway.
Most of the instrument manufacturers you have heard of are there: Gibson, Gretsch, Taylor, Alvarez, Ovation, Washburn, Yamaha, etc., along with over 500 other vendors of other musical necessities, publishers, and service providers. Only music merchants and people associated with them, and media members are allowed to attend - it is not open to the public.
Greg Hill, August 28, 2014
Why we will all be wearing WWI-style soft headgear by the 2020's First, it's about time everyone started wearing something on their heads. It was always a good idea, for the practical reason of protection from the elements, and the style motive of just looking good. Now, our electronics-obsessed society has added a third reason - to carry our devices. As far as I know, the "wearables" craze has not hit the head yet, but it will. It is inevitable. More and more people are wearing big ugly headphones, to join the masses sporting in-ear audio equipment. The folks wearing the over-the-ear gear may resort to Dr. Dre so they can pretend they are stylish, but the main reason is always that they sound better. Besides, some people, like myself have never found a pair of in-ears that fit quite right or sounded as good. The new headgear will provide on-ear or over-ear headphones under the flaps or the wearer can stick to earbuds if they prefer. Using modern, lightweight, breathable, and colorful materials, the headgear will be stylish, comfortable and practical. Nike's bright orange with the swoosh logos will be very popular along with less sporty versions from all of the style brands like aereo postale, Ralph Lauren, crocs, Tommy, Coach, etc. you can just see them, can't you? Pockets in the heavier versions could hold your smartphone, which will instantly connect to the earphones and built -in microphone using Bluetooth, of course, even if the smartphone is located in a pocket, purse or hand. Goggles will be attached or accommodated, including standard sun protection, the google glass variety or the more entertaining Oculus Rift style. Fitness electronics will be built into the hat or connected wirelessly. LED lights and light panels will be attached to illuminate the way and provide visibility, possibly along with a solar panel to store energy to power them. Outside speakers can provide entertainment for close friends or generate loud noises for protection. Sewn-in microphones can be used for phone conversations or public announcements on the inside, and omnidirectional versions can be attached on the outside for spying or simple hearing enhancement. Cameras can be attached in any direction for a variety of uses. They can be as small as crossed straps or as big as a motorcycle helmet. Are you beginning to appreciate the value, both practical and fun? Get ready to buy. You will be seeing them soon.
Greg Hill, June 15, 2014
Within businesses, security issues, and their consequences for the general public, saturate the news. With large organizations, even those with substantial budgets, well financed IT/IS departments and resources dedicated to system security, often do not do an appreciably better job than smaller enterprises with fewer resources and either no plan or a largely ineffective one. Most recently eBay and Target are alarming examples, and although those garner the most attention, as destructive both financially and to public peace of mind, the area of greatest concern is largely overlooked. These are the entities Homeland Security defines as Critical Infrastructure, “the backbone of our nation’s economy, security and health.” This paper will examine the threats to which these types of organizations are vulnerable, as well as the common mistakes being made that increase their susceptibility to the risks. Poorly planned and ineffectively implemented security measures may result in unintended consequences such as the loss of productivity and business confidentiality will also be examined. Finally, a template for developing an effective security plan will be included. Download the paper here.
by Greg Hill, April 5, 2014
Due to a personal emergency, I am not able to attend the NABShow in person this year, which presents a great opportunity to see just how much of the show you can really experience as a "virtual attendee". Of course, nothing can replace the thrill of entering the show floor, the face to face contact with like-minded individuals, the fabulous food and drink, the entertainment, and the parties. Well, obviously, virtual attendance is not the way to go if you can be there in person, but since I have no choice, this is the best I can do.
For those who don't know, NAB stands for the National Association of Broadcasters, and the show has been one of the most important events in the year of any company in the broadcasting and entertainment distribution business. When I worked in TV and radio, executives of the stations always attended to see what was new in the industry and participate in the educational sessions, while looking at possible new equipment purchases and shows to fill holes in their schedules. When I moved over to the broadcast software industry, the firm at which I was employed maintained a booth and usually obtained significant business every year. The industry has had at least one paradigm shift in the past decade or two, expanding the horizons of everyone involved, and changing the show to today's version, best described by the NABShow proprietors themselves:
CES and NAB have a lot of overlapping areas, but CES targets electronic devices, mainly television screens and SmartPhones, while NAB is primarily about delivering content (audio and video programs). Interestingly, both mega shows are including more and more content creation exhibitors as time goes on, mainly due to the democratization of the production industry, which has expanded the sources of creation from a few networks and studios to anyone with a SmartPhone.