The Joys of SoundCloud

Love this little cloud.

Love this little cloud.

Being a music and dance enthusiast, I have an insatiable appetite for new music. Dance music to be specific. How else to feed to hunger than via the glorious streaming music site and mobile app that is known as SoundCloud? Considering it ranks 157 on Alexa’s Global Web Traffic chart, I’m sure most of you know about it. However, despite the popularity, there are still some left in the dark. Regardless of your level of awareness, I would like to emphasize the reasons as to why I love SoundCloud:

1. Continuous and constant updates

A majority of electronic music artists are on SoundCloud. It’s the portal to the public in which they can release new music, remixes, and EPs without the restraints of a label. When you follow all your favorite artists, your newsfeed becomes a hotbed of music discovery. Because not only do they publish their own new music, they repost other great artists’ new music.

2. Embeddable posts

Oh, look! There’s a new 30 minute mix from Jack Beats. Let me copy and paste that embed code and post it on my blog. BOOM! The music blog community thrives off this simple copy and paste feature. And the electronic music world would not be as big as it is now, where it not for the bloggers. Sharing is caring.

3. The comments

Unlike Facebook, when you leave a comment on SoundCloud, the entire world isn’t notified. It’s actually pretty anonymous, almost like a tree falling in the woods and no one being around… except for the artist whose track you’re commenting on and those that follow said artist. And the comments here aren’t usually all snarky and rude like the YouTube comments. They’re short, sweet, and to the point. “WOW!” “Amazinggggg” and “OMG eargasm” and “Love this”. Sometimes there are the “I’ve heard better” and the “This is absolute shit”, but you can’t win everyone.

How to Kill Creativity

What Is Business Creativity?Creativity

We tend to associate creativity with the arts and to think of it as the expression of highly original ideas. Think of how Pablo Picasso reinvented the conventions of painting or how William Faulkner redefined fiction. In business, originality isn’t enough. To be creative, an idea must also be appropriate—useful and actionable. It must somehow influence the way business gets done—by improving a product, for instance, or by opening up a new way to approach a process.

The associations made between creativity and artistic originality often lead to confusion about the appropriate place of creativity in business organizations. In seminars, I’ve asked managers if there is any place they don’t want creativity in their companies. About 80% of the time, they answer, “Accounting.” Creativity, they seem to believe, belongs just in marketing and R&D. But creativity can benefit every function of an organization. Think of activity-based accounting. It was an invention—an accounting invention—and its impact on business has been positive and profound.

Along with fearing creativity in the accounting department—or really, in any unit that involves systematic processes or legal regulations—many managers also hold a rather narrow view of the creative process. To them, creativity refers to the way people think—how inventively they approach problems, for instance. Indeed, thinking imaginatively is one part of creativity, but two others are also essential: expertise and motivation.

Creative thinking, as noted above, refers to how people approach problems and solutions—their capacity to put existing ideas together in new combinations. The skill itself depends quite a bit on personality as well as on how a person thinks and works.