1. iPod vs the World

    brian on 2005.07.03
    at 04:08 am

    As a follow up to Jake’s post about the Zen Micro I’d like to point our readers to this story by my favorite technology pundit, John Gruber, entitled “Shuffling” If you want to cut to the chase, skip down to the paragraphs that start with the heading “Simplification.”

    I imagine the engineers at Creative banging their heads against whiteboards listing all the features they offer that Apple doesn’t, while Apple’s market share continues to rise. It’s a cop-out to chalk this up to “marketing”, however.

    This is the major reason behind the iPod’s success: not because it has a lot of buttons, but because it only has a few, and they feel good when you press them.

    It’s not the feature set, or the wiz-bang. It’s the experience, it’s the whole, not the parts.

    (Sorry, couldn’t leave this alone ;-)

    Posted in: Apple · Music · Technology

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  2. Live 8 Lives on via iTunes

    brian on 2005.07.03
    at 03:45 am

    Only an hour or so into today’s mammoth Live 8 concert, iTunes was posting the Live 8 concert footage, ready for purchase, track by track with all proceeds going towards the Live 8 causes. [ITMS]


    This is absolutely incredible. The DVD will be out in November but the songs are ready to download within hours of their performance. Does anyone doubt this is the future of music distribution?

    Anyone else think maybe AOL should have harnessed their Apple + iTunes connections and perhaps but Apple in charge of all the digital media for today’s event? But I digress…

    Posted in: Apple · Music · Politics

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  3. Live 8 is Over.

    brian on 2005.07.03
    at 03:25 am

    I worked today so I had to TiVO the event, and from what I hear, MTV made a commercialized mess of things.

    “The World’s economic model is strangling the poor, now here’s a message from Wal-Mart, sponsored by Viacom.”

    That aside, MTV does deserve some credit when it brings important issues to young people, but man, commercials during a charity concert to help solve African debt seems inappropriate and ironic. This says to the world, “Hi, we’re America and we don’t get it.” I’m pretty sure they didn’t interrupt Farm Aid with commercials.

    When I got in late last night, I pulled up the portion of the concert where the Dave Matthews Band played their set and managed to find two songs. One song they were interviewing some teenaged girls instead of listening to the music. Ugh. I suppose MTV hasn’t been about music in years…

    That said, if you missed it, or if you, like me saw/will see the MTV commercialized and filtered version, you’re in luck.

    AOL will be showing the concerts via its AOL Music OnDemand website for the next 6 weeks. CMT and VH1 Classic will air concert highlights the Sunday featuring artists geared to their audiences. Also, a DVD will be made available from the concerts in November tailored to each country. (hat tip)

    Right now, AOL is looping the rebroadcast, so that means you’ll tune into a streaming Windows Media feed, if you can get a feed working at all. This morning I tuned in to a stream using Safari, but later in the day they were saying Safari was “unavailable” but that I should use Firefox. Except Firefox didn’t work either. During my break at work, we had to Apple technicians trying to tune into the feed with no success. If we couldn’t connect, then we’re guessing pretty much no Mac user was using that feed at the time.

    Things are not without hope however. They also state “Enjoy the looping broadcast of the concert. Come back soon to watch the entire show, song by song, on demand.” Which means, if it’s like the current one-song video of Paul McCartney and U2 performing Sgt. Pepper, then we’ll be in luck: that video was presented in stunning high quality QuickTime. The whole damn thing should have been an MPEG4 stream that anyone could have enjoyed without having to hop through Windows Media hoops. Of course, AOL’s Live 8 streaming today was sponsored by… surprise, surprise… Microsoft Windows…

    Posted in: Music · Politics

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