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“Those who can’t do, teach.”

– Some asshole

I used to very seriously stand by that quote.  I figured if you’re busy doing, you’re way too busy to teach what you’re doing.

I was wrong.  If you’re too busy to teach your craft, at some point you need to change priorities and teach your craft.  Now, I think teaching is one of the most important things we can do.  It’s a giving act, can be selfless, and generally helps the student as much as the teacher.

Today, I’m going to make a case against the following arguments:

  • I’m not good enough/don’t know enough to teach.
  • I make too many mistakes to teach.
  • I don’t really know what I’m doing, how could I teach?
  • There are so many people who are better than me, I can’t teach yet.
  • You have to really have something mastered to teach it.
  • I’m just not quite ready to teach yet.
  • I don’t know how to teach.
  • I’m not a good teacher, I really suck at it.

Alright.  Are you ready to have all of your thoughts and opinions debunked and start teaching?

Let’s break into it…

Continue reading Teach

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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3 Types of Non-Skeezy Self Promotion

Now that we’ve already touched on making cool things and why that’s important, we need to discuss promoting the things you’re doing.

For a lot of people, this is a super uncomfortable thing.  I get that.

Here’s the good news for you if you feel that way – you just need practice.

To solve that problem without completely wrecking your moral compass, I’m going to throw some ideas and perspectives your way.  I hope you’ll take advantage of them.

Continue reading 3 Types of Non-Skeezy Self Promotion

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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Why You Should Make Cool Things

Last post, I discussed what you need to do when faced with option paralysis prior to picking your next project.

Now you need to know why this is important.

Normally you’d think “well, yeah Adam.  I need to make something cool and fun – what else were you thinking I’d do??”

Well, I tend to think you’d watch Netflix.  Or complain about how hard it is to actually finish making something really awesome!

So I want to encourage you to start and finish.  The best way to do this is to remember why you’re starting in the first place.

Continue reading Why You Should Make Cool Things

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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Make Cool Things

Have you ever had option paralysis?

Like you’re between projects, or just starting something new – but you have a horrible, awful conundrum.

You have no idea what to do.

There’s all sorts of possible reasons for this.  For example, writer’s block, where you seem to have no ideas.

You also might be putting a load of pressure on yourself because you want someone to think your work is awesome, but there’s no guarantee of that.

So what do you do in this situation?

Continue reading Make Cool Things

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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Iterating in Public

If you follow me on Twitter, you may have seen a post like this from me recently:

These tweets are then followed up with ones like this:

This isn’t an attempt at public accountability for me, or another way to “share what I’m up to”.

Instead, it’s a concerted attempt to both document and educate you, my audience, on the legitimate process of my work and more specifically its failures.

I think that providing this example is going to prove to be of vast importance for those reading along to learn and put their own plans into action.

How can something so simple be so important?  Let me explain.

Continue reading Iterating in Public

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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Consider Your Extrovert

I had a conversation with my wife a few weeks ago that I think may have been a “life-altering” one.  When I say “life-altering”, I mean it’s the type of conversation where years from now I’ll be able to trace back a lot of life consequences back to it.

A similar thing has happened before when I embarked on a degree in theatrical arts – due to that I’ve been in professional audio over a decade.

Also, when I landed my first independent film gig – it jump-started my career.

This time the conversation was really simple, straightforward, and blunt.

“Question for you… would you say that I’m an extrovert?” I asked my wife, as I sat down on our couch.

“Oh [laughs] definitely.  Most definitely.” she replied without skipping a beat.

To say I was dumbfounded would be an understatement.

Continue reading Consider Your Extrovert

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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Giving Your Best

Here’s a question you should ponder, if you haven’t already:

What does it take for you to give someone your best?

You’ll be tempted to focus this externally, with things like:

  • I need to get paid fairly
  • No crunch, ever
  • If my boss is a dick, I can’t do good work
  • My work environment has to be peaceful, or social
  • If my significant other is mad with me, I can’t do shit

Instead, take some time to ponder this question and make a list full of the things you can control.  Something like:

  • I need a full night’s sleep.  If I fall asleep by 9:30 I feel fantastic.
  • I need to eat well.  I feel best when I cook and eat meats, fruit, and vegetables.
  • I need some quiet time, 15-20 minutes of silence during the day helps me relax.
  • I need a challenge – if I don’t have a goal, I watch YouTube all day
  • I need to be learning, as repetitive tasks drive me up a wall
  • I need to have a hobby, because I can’t always focus on work or I’ll burn out
  • If I get angry or depressed, I fall apart.  I need to have a mechanism to deal with that in case it happens.

Providing value to others is the basis of a vast majority of the things you do.  This could be for friendships, romantic relationships, or business.  If you can’t take care of yourself, then you’re going to have a hard time taking care of others – think about the order in which you’re supposed to put on an airplane oxygen mask.

Take 5 minutes to think about this and scratch out your own list.  I’d love to hear what’s on yours – ping @adamtcroft

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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Make a Noise Generator with JUCE 5

Let’s piggyback off my previous post where I introduced you to making your first plugin with JUCE.

Today you’re going to end up making a random noise generator complete with a level slider.  Though it may not feel like the craziest or coolest thing you can concoct – completing this project will do a great job of introducing you to the basic core concepts of JUCE itself.

Make sure you’ve done the “Hello, World!” project before starting this.  That will ensure you have everything correctly installed and working so you don’t run into serious headaches.  Also keep in mind, the noise we’ll be generating won’t be true white or pink noise – use this for illustration and learning, not for mixing!

Let’s get started!

Continue reading Make a Noise Generator with JUCE 5

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.

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How to Make Hello, World with JUCE 5

If you’re interested in audio programming – specifically plugin or application development – JUCE is a C++ library you’re definitely going to want to know.

JUCE not only has an extensive code library, but also comes with a tool called the “Projucer” that rapidly builds a code framework depending on what you’re looking to create.

The Projucer
The Projucer will build you a code framework for a bunch of different use cases

In this post I’m going to walk you through making a “Hello, World!” audio plugin with JUCE, the Projucer, Windows and Visual Studio 2017 Community. Remember, as silly and/or boring as it sounds, “Hello, World!” is one of the most useful programs you can create. It makes sure your system and all the software you’re using are working correctly, and can write code with no other concerns!

If you’re still interested in exploring JUCE more after reading this post, you can find additional information and tutorials on the JUCE website.

Continue reading How to Make Hello, World with JUCE 5

Copyright 2016-2017, Adam T. Croft, all rights reserved.