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Trace Brown

Trace Brown

Library Media Specialist
Pattee Knowledge Commons

Get In Touch

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Trace Brown and I’m a Media/Maker Commons Consultant and Library Media Specialist for the Knowledge Commons at University Park. I was co-founder of a video production company, and used to be Chief Audio Engineer at another company before I started working at Penn State in 2008. I teach Media/Maker Commons workshops and help with the day to day consultations usually on the Sunday to Thursday 1pm-9pm shift. I’ve never really been a morning person so this schedule is perfect for me. I’m also the person in Media Commons who tends to discover the really weird workarounds and fixes to some of the problems we encounter when helping people use technology for media production. Things like using an old DV tape to trick Adobe Premiere into seeing a DVD because it wouldn’t record without timecode.

What equipment do you use?

I’ve been a Mac user since the System 7 days when I used to edit audio on a Mac IIci with a Digidesign ProTools III audio interface for the film and video production company where I was Chief Audio Engineer. It would take about a half day of moving files around and restarting the computer from a floppy disk multiple times just to prepare it every time I needed to record narration. It had a total hard drive space of 500MB with 4MB of RAM. I don’t miss those days. Now my Macbook Pro with Final Cut X, iMovie, and GarageBand with 16GB RAM and 1TB internal drive can let me do more than we ever dreamed of in those early days of digital production. And it’s all portable which is even more amazing.  On the Maker side, I spend time tinkering with electronics, Python programming/scripting and rebuilding a 1994 Buick Century.

What apps are your favorite?

Outside of the work stuff, Topo Maps+ is a really detailed mapping/GPS app that I discovered after getting lost in Switzerland using Apple Maps. Eclipse with PyDev and more recently Liclipse are my goto tools for programming.