Digital Audio World

Musings and information on podcasting, digital audio, online streaming audio and home studio recording from Tim 'Gonzo' Gordon of

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Slacker Radio Kicks Off

Are you ready for yet another online music service? Well, of course! And if we're going to partake, there'd better be something worthwhile here.

It looks like that might be the case with Slacker online radio. According to this article from PC World's blog, Harry McCracken believes that Slacker has enough different goodies to entice folks.

Although, yes, he did find a few bugs in the ointment.

A couple of observations after cruising by Slacker's site and giving it a try.

First, the logo - flying wings surrounding a swastika-like musical note - gave me an initial impression of Der Fatherland's 1935 look. I doubt that was intentional. And hey, the mind does pull some interesting things out of mid-brain at times. But, still...a strong imposing image.

I tuned into SXSW radio to check out the tunes and sound. High quality, immediate sound -- all from the front page. No software to load; just click and play.

So far, so good.

There's a 'share with friend' button and a load to device button (still in beta, as devices are expected later this year).

I don't need to repeat all that Harry went over - but it looks and sounds cool. I didn't run across the problem he apparently had of the station only playing one song at a time, but perhaps he spent more time than I.

Worth a look!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

MP3 Patent Fights Snarls Microsoft

What's it worth for Microsoft to be able to play MP3s in Windows Media Player? Or more to the point, if this case is ultimately ruled against Microsoft, what does the ruling mean to Apple and others who use software to play the billions of MP3s just lying around on PCs, Macs, iPods and other MP3 players?

This NY Times article may be able to shed some light on the whole thing, but it appears there are miles to go before this thing is put to bed.