One highlight of the Fortune Brainstorm conference for me was the final speaker, Neil Young, the musician.

I knew Young would be obsessed with music, but I did not know technology was an obsession as well. He is currently figuring out how to make his boat-sized convertible (a Cadillac?) into a hybrid.

Young does not, however, see technology as a necessarily good thing, particularly in terms of music.

iTunes, Apple and Steve Jobs have a lot to answer for, Young said:

The CD was great when came out. Music could go to a little disk. but that same convenience has taken us on a detour down the convenience highway and quality has taken a complete back seat now.

The music sold on iTunes and other platforms degrade the quality of music to an extent that most people do not even realize, Young said. If listeners could see music as we can see an image, the resolution would be too low for consumers to accept.

Journalist John Huey, who interviewed Young on stage, raised the question as to whether Jobs is a hypocrite: In visiting Steve Jobs’ living room a few years ago, Huey had seen an incredible high-end stereo, complete with vacuum tube, vinyl records and amazing speakers.

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15 comments

  1. Insider

    Hi – Interesting post, but no surprise about Neil Young. He’s been an early adopter since the 70s, and has a special personal interest in technology as it enabled communication with his autistic child. I suggest giving ‘Computer Boy’ a revisit.

  2. Inst

    It’s really a matter of cost. A good Creative Labs sound card costs $150, while a decent headset may require $600.

    If your equipment cannot provide high-fidelity playback, then why bother with high-fidelity media?

  3. Inst, it hardly requires $600.00 headphones to discern the relatively lower quality of MP3 compression.

  4. I cannot say how right you are!!! These other people have failed to see your point. I am going to put a link on my blog back to you ok?

  5. Oh man that’s great!!! You’re so right, everyone to date has failed to even see that, kudos!!! I’m going to link to your blog from my site, ok?

  6. Diane G Burrell

    this is an awsome blog

  7. annktrembley

    One highlight of the Fortune Brainstorm conference for me was the final speaker, Neil Young, the musician.I knew Young would be obsessed with music, but I did not know technology was an obsession as well. He is currently figuring out how to make his boat-sized fidelity 401k convertible (a Cadillac?) into a hybrid.Young does not, however, see technology as a necessarily good thing, particularly in terms of music.iTunes, Apple and Steve Jobs have a lot to answer for, Young said:

  8. annktrembley

    One highlight of the Fortune Brainstorm conference for me was the final speaker, Neil Young, the musician.I knew Young would be obsessed with music, but I did not know technology was an obsession as well. He is currently figuring out how to make his boat-sized fidelity 401k convertible (a Cadillac?) into a hybrid.Young does not, however, see technology as a necessarily good thing, particularly in terms of music.iTunes, Apple and Steve Jobs have a lot to answer for, Young said:

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  10. paulbjaylee

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  11. Anonymous

    Paying mortgage interest to banks, and investing retirement savings in mutual funds are two realities that we just seem to accept without question, because that’s the way it has always been. But who says it has to be that way? These are not laws of nature or biblical declarations carved in stone. They are simply rules, regulations and business practices we developed in other economic eras. There is no reason why they should not be reconsidered and changed if change is determined to be for the common good. Considering we are in the midst of worst financial and economic crisis since the great depression, we should be questioning whether the fundamentals that we blindly accept are still appropriate. (The 401(k) Mortgage concept does not suggest a 401(k) be used to pay off a mortgage…it suggests that a 401(k) be used to BUY a mortgage. There is a big difference). In other economic times, suggesting something as radical and revolutionary as the 401(k) Mortgage would quickly be vetoed by the influential banking lobby. It is fidelity 401k unlikely that they would cooperate in promoting or implementing changes that in effect require them to give up a large portion of a traditional mainstay of profitability…namely

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