Learning New Technology

By: Ragan Love

One word my friends use to describe me is “Grandma.” I don’t know Gen Z terms, I bake cookies, and I am not good with technology. I know how to work the Microsoft programs and can get by, but when the Pandemic started I had a huge learning curve to conquer. 

One thing that I and other music majors started using is Soundtrap. This is a recording platform that allows multiple people to record on the same piece. Because of this platform, PSU’s large ensembles are able to perform with our peers in the safety of our home. 

This term I am in a woodwind quintet and we have been working on three pieces of music. When I first went to complete a recording, I hit start and played with the metronome and our clarinetist and when I finished and listened back, I was out of time. I didn’t know why, I was playing it just like my quintet members but this is when I learned about latency. When we record anything, there is a slight delay, and it is different on every device. I recorded using my Macbook microphone which has a slower latency. Luckily my roommate has a studio microphone and let me record off of that, helping me to solve the latency problem.I will have to eventually get my own microphone because I will be doing recordings for the rest of my schooling, but I am grateful my roommate is helping me with this.

I also decided that it was time to start going paperless and I bought an iPad. As a music major I have a lot of sheet music that I end up printing out and now I can save some of those to the iPad. I can write and it’s been very useful for reading music. It is also really nice for homework in general. I use Microsoft Onenote and they actually have pages that have music staff, not just lined paper! I can also do a split screen between my Macbook and iPad so its like I have two monitors. I have used this feature while writing my papers because I can have my draft on one screen and my notes on the other.

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