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Ian Robinson's Weekly Digest - 13th June 2021

Ian Robinson's Weekly Digest - 13th June 2021
By Ian Robinson's Weekly Digest • Issue #17 • View online
Lots of music and music-related articles in this weeks post. Plus some good science stuff. Find me on Twitter if you want to discuss anything in this newsletter post.

Chinese Zhurong rover and lander on Mars
Chinese Zhurong rover and lander on Mars
Technology
Apple Music: Eddy Cue’s Honesty on Apple Music Lossless - M.G. Siegler - Link
Apple Music Dolby Atmos (Spatial Audio) and Lossless music downloads arrived this week. It’s good to have Lossless. I’ll be using the CD-quality versions for downloading. I’m not sure I can tell the difference between lossless and high-quality AAC after testing this week. But I’ll still use Lossless for the placebo effect! Dolby Atmos is a different beast. I think it will be good going forward as artists start to use it for new recordings. But retrofitting it to old stereo recordings might make them sound strange. The original Billboard interview article is paywalled. If you have an Apple News sub, then it is available here.
Science
Mars: Chinese Zhurong Rover picture on Mars - Prof. Paul Byrne - Link
Zhurong, the Chinese Mars rover carried a small wireless camera that it placed on the Martian surface to take a group picture of the rover and the lander. It’s fabulous. See here. The picture is also at the top of this newsletter.
Gender: Trailblazing Transgender Doctor Saved Countless Lives - Scientific American - Link
A remarkable story about Dr Alan L. Hart, an early transgender man who made significant contributions to the use of X-Rays in medicine and public health. In the early twentieth century, he was hounded by rumours and the press about his origins. I was reminded of the film The Age of Adaline while reading about how he had to move around the United States so much during his life.
Covid: The four most urgent questions about long Covid - Nature - Link
One of the reasons I’ve been very strict about my own personal social distancing and mask-wearing for the last year has been the threat of long Covid. The first few months of the pandemic in the UK showed that how it affected people was a bit like rolling some dice. It could hit you bad, or you could have no symptoms at all. But there wasn’t any way to tell which would happen to individuals. Even after a few months, there were reports of people with long-term after-effects of having the virus. This played into my thinking from about May in 2020. This article in the latest Nature is a good summary of the current knowledge on long Covid.
Sleep: Sleep Evolved Before Brains. Hydras Are Living Proof - Quanta Magazine - Link
Even organisms without brains sleep. Suggesting it evolved a very long time ago. A fascinating article in Quanta Magazine.
Culture
Marina Diamandis is my favourite singer who is currently active. And she would be near the top of any list I made of favourite singers from any era. I’ve only ever travelled from Belfast to London specifically to see three acts: Queen, Kate Bush, and Marina. That was in 2008 at the Camden Roundhouse for the iTunes Festival (remember those!) I thought she was something special then, and she’s even better now. Her fifth album came out this week (it’s in the new music list at the end of this newsletter), and so there have been a few promotional stories in the press. Two that caught my eye are linked below.
Music: Marina’s Music Was Caught Between Worlds. Now She’s Making Her Own - The New York Times - Link
A good piece on the album and Marina’s career from The New York Times.
Music: Marina’s Latest Album Provided a New Sense of Freedom - Billboard - Link
And a good interview article from Billboard.
Podcast: I Weigh with Jameela Jamil - Marina Diamandis - Jameela Jamil - Link
Marina was also on Jameela Jamil’s podcast this week. Well worth a listen.
Music: New music I discovered this week (listed in the order I added them to Apple Music)
Marina - Ancient Dreams In A Modern Land (Album) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Bleachers - How Dare You Want More (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
JJ Wilde - Wilde (Ep) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Sidney Bird - Your Skin (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
The Mountain Goats - Dark In Here (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
The Franklin Electric - Why You Gotta Be (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Lorde - Solar Power (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Leathers - Reckless (Ep) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Clairo - Blouse (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Olivia Lunny - Who Could Say No (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
AFI - Bodies (Album) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Jazie - Nothing’s Better (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter
Otherwise Fine - Tell Me You Love Me (ft. Emily Rowed) (Single) - Apple Music - Spotify - Twitter (Otherwise Fine) - Twitter (Emily Rowed)
Here are Apple Music and Spotify playlists with all the singles and one selected track from each album or EP. In no particular order. Play them on shuffle!
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Ian Robinson's Weekly Digest

Writer, walker, atheist, optimist, Apple enthusiast, cinema lover, hobby musician, science junkie, perpetual maths student, cricket fan, chess patzer.

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