Tag Archives: iTunes

Google Music Search needs food

The new Google Music Search feature is cool and all, but as of this writing it only turned up four recordings for Ludwig van Beethoven, and Gustav Mahler returned nil. Ditto for San Francisco Symphony.

The direct links to iTMS are cool too, but something seems wrong with my Firefox because those links seem to only launch iTunes from Safari right now.

It’s nice to see the direct link to iTMS though. It’s certainly a result that up until now has been mostly absent from their results, and now if they can figure out how to get the entire iTMS catalog properly indexed and how to cross-reference composer, work, conductor, soloist, and ensemble for classical entries, it will be useful to me.

iTunes 5

What I like about iTunes 5:

  • Better, larger status display window
  • Much faster performance in the UI, especially when browsing the iTunes Music Store.

And bottom line, those are the most important features to me. However…

What I could care less about in iTunes 5:

  • “Skip when shuffling” preference. Yawn.

And what sucks:

  • “User interface guidelines? What user interface guidelines? We don’t need no stinkin’ guidelines!”
  • The iTunes Visualizer is totally busted now. The other visuallizer plugins work just fine, but the Apple one is hosed. Shows an Apple logo and the song title for too long, then fades to black and that’s it. Minimalist for sure.

Priorities

This came up in an interesting discussion today: What are your top three or four priorities? Everyone had the most interesting responses, and it was really insightful to hear what people had going on in their lives. Such a wide variety of answers, each very dependent on one’s life experiences and current affairs, and sometimes even where someone wanted to go. Here’s mine:

  1. Family
  2. Music
  3. Career
  4. Friends

Putting family at the top is a no-brainer for anyone with a wife and kids. Really, they are everything in the world to me. The interesting revelation for me was where I placed the career entry, below music. Ask me the same question a couple of years ago before I got my bass restored and iTunes rekindled my interest in listening, and music would not have even been on the radar. Ask me thirteen years ago, before I met Yingwen, and music would have been the No.1 spot. I think music has drifted back up to it’s proper place now.

Career means a wide topic actually. A major chunk of that is all that I do – web development, computer technology, programming, design, information, etc. Another aspect of it is simply the primal need to provide for item No.1 on my list. But the part I like the most about No.3 is that I absolutely love what I do for my career – I wouldn’t have it any other way.

And lastly, I added friends to the list. I am by some nature a social person, and I value my friendships with other people. They are in many ways like family, but thankfully I don’t have to worry about them every day. 😉 A big part of my life is conversation, activities, and sharing with others – the list would feel incomplete without some notion of those people that are outside my immediate family but still are very close to us.

What’s on your list?

How many times must the cannonballs fly…

As a Bob Dylan fan, I found this news particularly cool:

Bob Dylan to visit Taiwan

Rock singer-turned-anti-war icon Bob Dylan is to visit Taiwan in July. According to our understanding, the singer���s agent has agreed to have him participate as a part of Taipei County���s annual Ho-Hai-Yan Rock Festival, in response to an invitation from President Chen Shui-bian. It will cost the presidential office nearly eight million NT dollars to bring Dylan to Taiwan.

���How many times must the canon balls fly, before they’re forever banned? The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind,��� said President Chen as he read lyrics from Bob Dylan���s Blowing in the Wind to express his emotions in reaction to China���s enactment of its anti-secession law.

Oh man that would be a beyond-fun concert to go to…

Speaking of Bob, I love this early demo version of Went to See the Gypsy from the iTunes store. The simple electric piano accompaniment is sublime.

Digital Booklet

U2: How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb

The cool thing about this kind of album download like U2’s new album above is the addition of a PDF of the CD‘s liner notes. This always has been a complaint of mine about digital downloads – no album info. I usually want to know who was playing on which tracks, especially in jazz recordings, and want any lyrics that might be available, or at the very least just enjoy the album art. Stuff like that makes my digital downloads much more enjoyable. Hopefully we’ll see more of this.