September 11, 2009

This Site Is Now Defunct!

Filed under: Blog Explanations — Robert John Ed @ 3:07 pm

My site has moved!  Sort of!  Basically, it’s just being hosted on the same domain, but not through WordPress.  It’s in the midst of an overhaul but is now hosted directly on and should be complete relatively soon.

If you read directly off the site, just head over to that spot.  If you use RSS, I still have to set up a feedburner account and dally out the necessary pieces for that, but it may take a bit of time.  You can add the feed to a reader, it isn’t finalized by name or attributes yet, but should work for you.

Thanks for reading!

Robert John Ed

PS I’m not sure if I can do it, but I’ll look into an automatic redirect too.


September 10, 2009

Working Out the Kinks

Filed under: Blog Explanations — Robert John Ed @ 5:16 pm

If you go to my blog via direct traffic (i.e. type in the URL and click on blog) you’ve probably already noticed that the blog is now hosted at  I think that’s a big step for a website, having a memorable name and easy navigation.  Type it in, hit return, done.

Before, I had a basic opening page with four links (in rudimentary CSS) that had a few snippets.  The problem is that this website doesn’t warrant navigation like that, it’s not big enough.  It’s a waste of time.  When I started the site it seemed like a good idea, now it seems superfluous.

So now when you type in the URL, you get the blog, which will eventually have a tab or two with a back story and any other relevant info worth another page.  It’s the same thing, just easier.

Lastly, don’t mind the clutter and look of this, it’s a work in progress and will come together in good time.  I have to design a few things and work with a friend who actually knows how to code, so bear with me.  In the mean time, I’ll still be updating, but not as frequently as normal due to other constraints such as school (which just started and is not vewy, vewy quiet).

September 8, 2009

Big Thinkers

Filed under: Philosophy — Robert John Ed @ 9:37 pm

Looking at this list from Seth Godin.  It’s never more apparent to me than now how much there is to learn about where technology is bringing us and why those who seek it out continually will lead.  Everything is consolidating.  Everything is morphing.  Getting smarter and faster.  Yet we aren’t learning it faster.  Not yet.

Yes, the sky is falling.  Albeit slowly.

We should be spending more time on books based on change.  Ideally, a very healthy mix of pragmatic historical assessment and an emboldened diagnostic of what is possible today and soon tomorrow.

Big thinkers can’t be rooted in the past to grow into the future.

Hype Machine News

Filed under: Digital Distribution, Music — Robert John Ed @ 4:29 pm

I finally set up an account on Hype Machine.  I’d been lurking (btw, I want to write a longer and more thoughtful post on lurkers and what it means for sites and companies online at some point) on the site for over a year now, but recently saw that they have integrated and Twitter functionality with it, which offers a 1+1+1 = 5 equation.

Hype Machine is where I go when I want to hear early buzz on bands I’ve never heard of. works similarly for me, but it’s more of a way to track how much of what has been in my rotation lately and read more in depth band bios.  Many people use Myspace for this, but I abhor Myspace and think it’s the equivelant of an 80’s acid trip gone bad.  Meanwhile, has comprehensive information on every band and offers scrobbling, which is probably the most important music related feature on my hardware.

Ever more so recently, I’ve realized how much of a music fanatic I am.  It doesn’t matter what kind, I’m near always consuming new music.  Some lasts a long time (like the Wolf Parade or Rural Alberta Advantage albums) and some dies out.  But it’s a constant for me, and I’m going to continue to write about it.  Getting out to more live shows is also of interest.

I  also want to use twitter more proactively again(user:  @redmarketer).  I used to be a constant user and although I didn’t do it all the time (3x per day?) it did offer significant amounts of information and a good outlet for less important info, i.e. non bloggable stuff.  Combining all these three services like Hype Machine has done is the key to building a smarter network and keeping me as a user, kudos to Hype Machine for the good work.

September 7, 2009

But First, New Musics, September 2009

Filed under: Music — Robert John Ed @ 3:56 pm

Before logging off though, here is a brief overview of musical meandering for the month:

Stellastarr*, Self Titled:  Kind of a different sound from another NY based band, I haven’t listened to it much, but the lead voice is higher, nasally, etc.  Something there is about the East Coast and singers, that Bouncing Souls sound, I’m not sure if it’s a regional dialect or just coincidence.  Anyway, the guitar sounds good, it’s different, so we’ll see where it goes.

Mountain Goats, All Hail West Texas:  It’s no secret that this has been one of my favorite new bands (I use this loosely, as they are new to me) of the year.  The first two albums I picked up were far more traditional in terms of recording as they were recent, but apparently, John Darnielle’s early recordings were all decidedly lo-fi (as opposed to hi-fi, duh).  I’ve listened to it once through, on my way back from Split Rock camping on the North Shore, and as expected, it’s really good.  I think as of yet I prefer the more traditional recording as it points out the singing quality, but this kind of recording really shines for the Goats.  It’s difficult to describe, but Darnielle writes in prose so simple it often belies obscurity.  This is not Hemingway, it’s something else altogether.  Much like I’ve studied Dylan and Oberst, I’ll parlay a more robust analysis of his writing as it becomes apparent.

Additionally, I’m going to see them with Final Fantasy (whom I hear good things about) along with a few other concerts in the next month; they are without a doubt the most exciting of all.

Grizzly Bear, Veckatimest:  Yet another NY band, Grizzly Bear has had a LOT of great reviews over the last few months.  I wonder if Rolling Stone often gives more credence to East Coast bands, but the praise has been widespread.  I try to stay away from the hot bands initially in order to keep off the hype.  I haven’t really listened to this much at all, but from what I have heard of this band, it reminds me of experimental psych pop, think modernized OK Computer, I guess.  But, I’m getting ahead of myself.  I’m not huge into experimental stuff, for instance, I never really went crazy over Yeasayer, though I thought it was good enough to listen to and digest a few times.  Problem is, new types of music take more time, and this certainly does require much more time.

Arctic Monkeys, Humbug:  The third full length from the Indie/Garage sounding Brits, I have really high expectations.  Their first album was very fast and kind of blew the doors off of 2006.  It was just really high energy and well put together with a different sound and a British dialect in the vocals.  I wasn’t writing about music back then, but it probably would have been my top album that year.  Their follow up was different.  It took me a while longer to really enjoy it, but once it hit me, it seemed more mature and valuable than their first.

Upon listening to Humbug, my first thoughts are that it’s a little bit slower, but you can hear some progression from their secondary effort.  The guitars are just heavier and overall it sounds, well, confident.  It’s not easy to deviate and morph your sounds, and the Monkeys seem unapologetic in distancing themselves from prior successes.  I have a feeling this will be an album to listen to over the long haul.


Site Down for a Bit

Filed under: Blog Explanations — Robert John Ed @ 3:15 pm

I’m in the midst of a slight rebrand on this site, so won’t be posting for a bit.  Hold tight.  Hold steady.  Hold something.

September 1, 2009

I’ve Been Listening to Wolf Parade a Week Straight

Filed under: Music — Robert John Ed @ 2:13 pm

Speaking of Which…

Filed under: Blog Explanations, Personal Branding — Robert John Ed @ 1:47 am

I’m finally going to redesign this site with some help from my buddy Virtual Monk.  Keep an eye out over the next few weeks, I’ll be altering the layout, probably keeping a similar logo, but getting back good formatting for pictures and maybe nixing the navigation (i.e. building a one page site).   Here’s a rudimentary alteration of colors:


Ignore Everybody And 39 Other Keys to Creativity

Filed under: Book Reviews, Personal Branding — Robert John Ed @ 1:42 am

Hugh Macleod is a good read, both online and in print.  His new book is called Ignore Everybody, and it’s premised on the keys to being creative.

Hugh’s story reads a lot like a web 2.0 fairytale.  He started writing cartoons on the back of business cards a long time ago.  All of a sudden, today, he’s a huge blogger and has a lot of followers.  And by “all of a sudden” I mean that it took about ten years.  Anyway, he has an eclectic array of vocational pieces in his tool belt.  He now is an author of a big seller, he does more “traditional” art and sells it online, he does marketing consulting, he’s worked for Microsoft as such, he’s still working on a Stormhoek wine project, etc.  My guess is he has a lot more of “etc.”  (in fact, using “etc.” erroneously is a large writing idiosyncrasy of his I’ve picked up on.)

Anyhoo, the reason I bought and read his book (used on Amazon for $7) is because I like his blog.  I like his voice and his loosely structured, sporadic writing.  It translates well to his book.

Creativity is a really volatile and misunderstood thing.  By misunderstood, I mean that no one truly understands it, not that there is a good explanation people just aren’t yet clued into.  Everybody ticks differently and so what makes me creative and you creative aren’t necessarily one and the same.  But creativity is very important.  It’s why Redmarketer exists.  I still get a lot of shit about branding a website and creating a logo from people.  Yet, it’s a creative outlet.  An outlet for me to vent thoughts and ideas and anything I’m digging at that particular point in time.  This site was built because of inspiration from people like Hugh that understand the value in slowly building something over the long haul.  And, yes, marketing yourself.

Back to the book.  Hugh points out, candidly, some very refreshing points on creativity, life in the advertising business as well as life in the cube.  With a bunch of funny cartoons intermingled.  One such point (and probably the most important) is that a good idea is going to be rejected by almost everyone.  Your ideas, good and bad (but especially good) have the potential to really change things in a social construct; i.e. your boss, peers and friends.  They may well not like your idea, but they also are likely to subconsciously avoid the potential change your idea represents.  It’s not that they want to, it’s just human nature.

You could read this book in less than two hours.  It’s EXTREMELY light, but it’s also very enjoyable and would be a good refresher from your typical business fare.  Recommended.


August 29, 2009

Wakeboarding & Minnesota Summers

Filed under: Random — Robert John Ed @ 4:32 pm

For the first time in about four years, I was treated to a wakeboarding expedition on Forest Lake with a few coworkers. The guy with the lake lot owns a Malibu boat, I didn’t ask which model, but it was NICE. It had a full ballast system and the wake was the biggest I’ve yet seen or ridden.

As a youth, my bread and butter consisted of videogames and wakeboarding (kneeboarding initially evolved into it, never learned how to ski). Videogames just aren’t that interesting to me anymore. I don’t know when it happened, but it now feels like a large waste of time. Nothing really comes out of it. I still dig playing coops and Street Fighter 4, but can’t get down with most everything else. Case in point: I’ve had Resident Evil 5 for months and haven’t attempted passing the second stage. That is one of the best games on earth and I can’t seem to muster enough time and energy to enjoy it properly. Wack, eh?

Wakeboarding the other day was nothing like it. The rush and enjoyment I get out of being on the lake in the sunshine knows no bounds. It’s my youth. And now I’m feverishly day dreaming about getting a Super Air Nautique 230. Soon. Before a house. That’s very likely a poor financial decision, all things considered. But I don’t care. BTW the difference between an average boat and a nicer wakeboarding boat is absolutely immense. With enough time and inherent talent on a good/great rig, many people could be doing the same tricks pros do. Plus, it’s luxurious. Huge motors and sound systems mixed with comfortable seating for eight people equals good times.

People that don’t get a chance to be out on the lakes during Minnesota summers are missing the boat. Yeah. It’s the absolute best thing about living here. And I intend to spend my aging years tugging around friends on Lake Ida and eventually some spot closer to the Minneapolis area.


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