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Auto-Tune

Auto-Tune is an audio processor introduced in 1997 by and registered trademark of Antares Audio Technologies which uses a proprietary device to measure and alter pitch in vocal and instrumental music recording and performances. It was intended to disguise or correct off-key inaccuracies, allowing vocal tracks to be tuned despite being off-pitch. Since its inception, producers began to use Auto-Tune as an effects unit, to deliberately distort vocals. By 2018, music critic Simon Reynolds observed that Auto-Tune had "revolutionized popular music", calling its use for effects "the fad that just wouldn't fade, its use is now more entrenched than ever."The effect is not to be confused with a vocoder or the talk box. Auto-Tune is available as a plug-in for digital audio workstations used in a studio setting and as a stand-alone, rack-mounted unit for live performance processing; the processor shifts pitches to the nearest true, correct semitone. Auto-Tune can be used as an effect to distort the human voice when pitch is raised or lowered such that the voice is heard to leap from note to note stepwise, like a synthesizer.

Auto-Tune has become standard equipment in professional recording studios. Instruments such as the Peavey AT-200 guitar seamlessly use Auto Tune technology for real time pitch correction. Auto-Tune was launched in September 1997 by Andy Hildebrand, a Ph. D. research engineer specialized in stochastic estimation theory and digital signal processing. His method for detecting pitch involved the use of autocorrelation and proved to be superior to earlier attempts based on feature extraction that had problems processing certain aspects of the human voice such as diphthongs, leading to sound artifacts. Music industry engineers had considered the use of autocorrelation impractical because of the large computational effort required, but Hildebrand found a "simplification changed a million multiply adds into just four, it was a trick — a mathematical trick.” Over several months in early 1996, he implemented the algorithm on a custom Macintosh computer, presented the result at the NAMM Show that year, where "it was a massive hit."Hildebrand had come up with the idea for a vocal pitch correction technology on the suggestion of a colleague's wife, who had joked that she could benefit from a device to help her sing in tune.

Auto-Tune was designed to discreetly correct imprecise intonations, in order to make music more expressive, with the original patent asserting that "When voices or instruments are out of tune, the emotional qualities of the performance are lost."According to Chris Lee of the Los Angeles Times, Cher's 1998 song "Believe" is "widely credited with injecting Auto-Tune's mechanical modulations into pop consciousness". Cher's producers used the device to "exaggerate the artificiality of abrupt pitch correction", contrary to its original purpose. While working with Cher on the song "Believe" in 1998, producers Mark Taylor and Brian Rawling discovered that if they set Auto-Tune on its most aggressive setting, so that it corrected the pitch at the exact moment it received the signal, the result was an unsettlingly robotic tone. In an early interview, the producers of "Believe" claimed they had used a DigiTech Talker FX pedal, in what Sound on Sound’s editors felt was an attempt to preserve a trade secret.

After the success of "Believe" the technique was referred to as the "Cher Effect". In the year 2000, the single "Naive Song" performed by Mirwais Ahmadzai from his album Production was the first track using Auto-Tune on the complete vocals; the use of Auto-Tune as a vocal effect was bolstered in the late 2000s by hip hop/R&B recording artist T-Pain who elaborated on the effect and made active use of Auto-Tune in his songs. He cites new jack swing producer Teddy Riley and funk artist Roger Troutman's use of the Talk Box as inspirations for his own use of Auto-Tune. T-Pain became so associated with Auto-Tune that he had an iPhone App named after him that simulated the effect, called "I Am T-Pain". Dubbed the "T-Pain effect", the use of Auto-Tune became a popular fixture of late 2000s music, where it was notably used in other hip hop/R&B artists' works, including Snoop Dogg's single "Sexual Eruption", Lil Wayne's "Lollipop", Kanye West's album 808s & Heartbreak. In 2009, riding on the wave of Auto-Tune's popularity, The Black Eyed Peas' number-one hit, "Boom Boom Pow", made heavy use of Auto-Tune on all the group's vocals to create a futuristic sound.

Radiohead used Auto-Tune on their 2001 album Amnesiac to create a "nasal, depersonalised sound" and to process speech into melody. According to singer Thom Yorke, the software "desperately tries to search for the music in your speech, produces notes at random. If you've assigned it a key, you've got music."The use of Auto-Tune in hip hop gained a resurgence in the mid-2010s in trap music. Hip hop artists like Future, Travis Scott, Lil Uzi Vert use Auto-Tune to create a signature sound; the effect has become popular in raï music and other genres from Northern Africa. According to the Boston Herald, country stars Faith Hill, Shania Twain, Tim McGraw use Auto-Tune in performance, calling it a safety net that guarantees a good performance. However, other country music singers, such as Allison Moorer, Garth Brooks, Big & Rich, Trisha Yearwood, Vince Gill and Martina McBride, have refused to use Auto-Tune; the latest version of Auto-Tune is Auto-Tune Artist, optimized for low latency performance. The most popular version of Auto-Tune is the third newest release.

At the 51st Grammy Awards in early 2009, the band Death Cab for Cutie made an appearance wearin

Yutian County, Xinjiang

Yutian County transliterated from Uyghur as Keriya County, is a county in Hotan Prefecture, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, China. It contains an area of 39,023 km2. According to the 2002 census, it has a population of 220,000, its government is located at Keriya Town. The county is bordered to the north by Aksu Prefecture, to the east by Minfeng/Niya County, to the west by Qira County and to the south by Tibet; the county derives its Chinese name from the Kingdom of Khotan. The name was written as'于闐' at that time; this was changed to'玉田' following the adoption of Simplified Chinese, to'于田' in 1959. The three names have a similar pronunciation in Mandarin Chinese. Keriya, the English-language form of the Uyghur name for the county, is derived from the name of the Keriya River. Yutian County is dubbed the "Home of Jade"; the ancient name of Keriya was Ganmi. The names Yutian and Ganmi were used by the Chinese envoy Zhang Qian in his 125 BCE report on his embassy's travels. Yutian County was formed in 1882, its administrative center was Karakash, Keriya was only a post station.

In 1885, the administrative center of the county was moved to Keriya. Aurel Stein travelled along the Keriya River in his early 20th century expeditions in the region. In 1920, the area was part of Hotan Dao. In 1950, the area was part of Hotan Special Area. In 1959, the Chinese character name for the county was set as'于田'. In 1977, the area became part of Hotan Prefecture. In November 1980, the Yutian hydroelectric plant, located on the Keriya River, went into operation. On March 21, 2008, the county was at the epicenter of a 7.1/7.3 magnitude earthquake. In February 2014, the county was at the epicenter of a 6.8 magnitude earthquake. No injuries or deaths were reported. In 2018, the Financial Times reported that the Yutian county vocational training centre, among the largest of the Xinjiang re-education camps, had opened a forced labour facility including eight factories spanning shoemaking, mobile phone assembly and tea packaging, giving a base monthly salary of ¥1,500. Between 2016 and 2018, the centre expanded 269 percent in total area.

In 2018, Regiment 225 (兵团二二五团, part of Kunyu, was listed as part of the county. As of 2018, the county includes two towns and thirteen townships:Towns: Keriya Town, Xambabazar Townships: Jay, Aral, Bogazlanggar, Tagdaxman, Oytograk, Yengibag, Darya Boyi Others: National Sheep Farm, Yutian Prison, Regiment 225 The county is known for its production of jade. Agriculture and livestock farming in the county produces corn, rice, cotton and melons. Industries in the county include jade mining, cotton ginning, tractor repair and preserved fruit processing. In the late 2010s, Uyghurs made up 98.3% of the population of the county. China National Highway 315 Kurban Tulum, promoted by the Communist Party of China as a symbol of unity with the Uyghurs XINJIANG: Disappearing Darya Boyi

Battle of the Planets (comics)

The Battle of the Planets is a series of comic book based on a television series of the same name. It was published by American company Gold Key Comics, with Top Cow releasing a number of comics more recently. Released in comic book form by Gold Key Comics in 1979, the series was revamped by Top Cow Productions with a new twelve-issue limited series starting in 2002; the series was planned as an ongoing comic, but low sales led to its cancellation at issue 12, which ended the series with a cliffhanger. A two-issue mini, was solicited in 2005, was meant to tie up the loose ends, but never made it to print. In 2003, there were a number of crossover one-shots starting with Witchblade; this was followed by two crossover issues with the ThunderCats. These were followed by a number of other comics: a Battle Book one-shot, one-shots focused on Mark and Jason, a six-issue limited series called Battle of the Planets: Princess released in 2004, written by David Wohl and illustrated by Wilson Tortosa. Top Cow published three issues of a manga version in 2003–2004.

Top Cow's license is now lapsed, there are no plans for future Battle of the Planets works from them, including the unreleased Endgame. A different Battle of the Planets strip was published in the UK weekly in TV Comic from 1981 to 1983, illustrated by Keith Watson; the various series have been collected into a number of trade paperbacks: The Gold Key series: Battle of the Planets Classics Volume 1 The Top Cow comics: Trial by Fire Blood Red Sky Destroy all Monsters Digests of the Top Cow comics: Trial By Fire Destroy All Monsters List of comics based on television programs