Magnatune music: we are not evil

Magnatune logo

I learned about a music label this week called Magnantune that lets anyone listen to their entire catalog before buying. You can listen to any track from any of their artists online. Granted, it’s a streaming file, rather than a straight download, but it’s a hell of a lot more than the other labels offer. Magnatune also has per-genre streaming radio stations for you internet radio junkies, as well as podcasts.

These guys really seem to get it: free streaming of all tracks, everything licensed under Creative Commons, free licenses for podcasters/videocasters, and all purchased albums are available to the buyer as unrestricted MP3 files with a license to share the music with up to three people. Oh, and the music is pretty good, too! Good stuff, guys.

tags: |

WiFi love

I’m midway across Puget Sound on a ferry heading to Bainbridge Island, checking my mail, downloading podcasts, and working on a network problem in Tacoma. God bless free WiFi.

Users and developers partying together

I came home from Gnomedex Friday night not feeling good at all. The day’s presentations had been great but I really felt like I had little to offer since I’m not a developer and am really just a consumer of the technologies on the day’s agenda. I drove home in a bit of a foul mood – even debating if I should come back for Saturday’s presentations or just listen to the live stream.

But I went, and man am I glad I did. The message the was driven home to me was that users like me are extremely valuable to the process. The room was repeatedly referred to as not just a group on the “bleeding edge” or the ultimate early adopters, but as the lunatic fringe. 300 people willing to try out raw new technologies and create markets, new products, and new ideas from them. This is the group of people who turned blogging into a word that many Americans have heard, convinced Apple to implement RSS in Safari and podcast support in the upcoming iTunes 4.9, and who convinced Microsoft to support RSS in Longhorn. The room was packed with bloggers, podcasters, video bloggers, and developers of web sites like Technorati, PubSub, and Bloglines, as well as developers of critical RSS applications like NetNewsWire, FeedDemon, and RSSBandit. Not to mention inventors of the underlying technology (thanks, Dave). But none of that would have been possible if users hadn’t picked it up, kicked it around a bit, given feedback to the developers, and helped make it all useful.

So, Adam has been correct all along, it is all about users and developers partying together. That’s what makes technology work, and what makes it relevant in the real world.

“We are the media”

Adam Curry is on stage right now. He’s absolutely correct. I’m in a room with 300 people and with very few exceptions, everyone has a laptop. Nearly everyone has a digital still or video camera. I’ve never heard of anything like this. Everyone here is blogging the event and those who aren’t here can listen to a live webcast. It’s really an amazing, and odd, place to be.

Gnomedex: First impressions

  1. Dave Winer is much taller than I’d expected.
  2. Adam Curry isn’t as tall as I’d expected
  3. Chris Pirillo is about as tall as I’d expected
  4. Dan Gillmor gave me a nice bit of encouragement
  5. The place is crawling with “A-list” bloggers and podcasters
  6. Cameras everywhere
  7. The wifi is fast but uses the same IP range as my corporate WAN, making VPN connections something I’ve yet to work out
  8. The Google trucker hat was a nice touch
  9. My URL got left off my name badge somehow but I’ll fix that myself
  10. Parking isn’t bad