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Playlist: A. Randall Wenner's Portfolio

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The Man You Can't Ignore

From A. Randall Wenner | 02:47

He survives by his ability to entertain you -- a profile of a longtime weight-guesser along the boardwalk at Ocean City, Maryland

Oceancity_small This audio-rich, trackless piece brings back the memories of walking the boardwalk on vacation. Around every corner there's someone who is trying to entice you to let him or her guess your weight. To draw a crowd, they have to entertain -- but to stay in business, they have to be good at what they do. This longtime boardwalk weight guesser tells us what it's like to do his job -- and it's harder than you might think.

The Music of Noise

From A. Randall Wenner | 04:13

Is it possible to make “music” from “noise”? Is it possible to enjoy it? Randy Wenner reports on an experimental music genre making a comeback of sorts -- and you'll have to judge for yourself whether any of these "songs" will soon be making your playlists.

Img_0045_small A post-Industrial Revolution experiment resulted in a set of machines called intonarumori -- "instruments" that produced sounds seemingly more at home inside a factory than inside a theater. More than a century later, a design professor at Syracuse University has painstakingly recreated those instruments for students to experiment with -- and he argues it's a lot less disturbing to hear this "music" now than it was in the 1910s. Judge for yourself --it's a earful! The piece is sound rich and explores whether our modern world already embraces the concept of "noise as music"-- think the Clash, the Ramones, etc. Piece runs 4:00 with about :13 music pad.

iPod Granddaddy -- a Transistor Radio Prototype -- Goes to the Smithsonian

From A. Randall Wenner | 02:43

The device that inspired a generation-- a prototype of one of the first portable transistor radios -- has just been accepted into the Smithsonian's electronics collection.This piece takes us back to the 50s and 60s and looks at the significance of the transistor radio as the forerunner of today's iPods.

Ge_transistor_radio_prototype_small Using period music, ads, and newsreel clips, this piece explores the importance of the race to develop a transistor radio and its significance as the forerunner of today's iPods.

Smartphone App Warns Israeli Citizens if Missiles are Headed Their Way

From A. Randall Wenner | 03:24

A new smartphone app developed by an American college student and his colleague uses up-to-the minute data from the Israeli Defense Force to warn Israeli citizens about nearby rocket strikes, and warns them to take cover if the rocket strike is nearby.

Screen568x568_small He spends most of his time developing games -- but when a friend asked for his help in developing an app that could save lives, Ben Honig jumped at the chance. Within just 5 days, he and his friend had created and uploaded the app to Apple's App Store, and made it available for free download. Though the story involves Ben, it really focuses around an Israeli teenager who lets us know what life is like for her family now, always on the lookout for rocket attacks, and explains how important -- perhaps lifesaving -- the app has been to her.

The Holiday Songs That Drive Us Crazy!

From A. Randall Wenner | 03:47

A survey by one of the country's top media research firms sheds light -- if not love -- on the holiday music we love to hate.

Holiday_small It happens every year -- radio stations across the country start"flipping" formats to begin playing holiday music. Edison Research has compiled a list of the 10 holiday songs that drive us crazy. While there are some songs on the list that won't surprise anyone, you might be surprised by some of the songs that made the list. Is a favorite of yours among them? This piece "countsdown" the Top Ten, along with insight from the president of the research firm (the same firm that does the Election Day exit polling for the major networks.) (Piece runs 3:00 plus pad)