New Sites and New Sounds

After all of the great feedback generated by my last post—a Ruby script that automatically logs IFTTT data into Day One—I’ve honestly been a little reluctant to get back to the “main” aspect of this blog, which is my academic work. But here we are.

This week I started teaching my experimental undergraduate class, “The Nature of Sound / The Sound of Nature,” which so far has proven to be incredibly cool. For starters, thanks to @jenterysayers, I built my course website using GitHub Pages, a robust and flexible way to host to static website. I’m adding new pages, links, and elements practically every day right now to adjust to the flow of the class the flow of my pedagogical inspiration—which is super high right now. It feels great to be back in the classroom after a few semesters off from teaching. Basically, the course website functions as an interactive syllabus. Nothing is password protected, so you can have a look around and even follow along, to a certain extent. I’ll try to add class notes and slideshows, when appropriate.

Doing all of that tinkering made me think it was time for a change on this site as well. I moved away from the Quite Big Tumblr theme, which I actually loved, over to the Write theme just for a change of pace. After my initial excitement I actually found much in the theme that I either disliked (page width, header size) or was fundamentally broken (block quotes), so I spent a few hours tinkering around with it, and that’s what you see here. If you view the posts via RSS or the Tumblr dashboard, come on over to the main page sometime and have a look.

Finally, for all of you American Studies / Sound Studies / American West nerds out there—and the handful of us who might exist at that intersection—here’s a head’s up that there is, in fact, an audio version of the “frontier thesis” by Frederick Jackson Turner. It’s still in print, in fact, and available from—who else?—Smithsonian Folkways. Have a look and a listen right here. I’ll be doing a more in-depth post about the audio version of this classic text some time before the end of the semester.

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