Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Something old, something new

A while back I stumbled across a web site called Pandora that I thought was fairly interesting, but filed it away in my mind and went about my usual daily internet-surfing routing of slashdotting, digging, IMDBing, and the like. In the past few weeks, though, I have, oh, how should one say it...rediscovered what it has to offer. See, there's this thing called the Music Genome Project that is, in a nutshell, an effort to analyze "genes," or building blocks, of songs. Apparently there's something like 400 individual qualities that music can be judged by, and the guys at MGP have basically broken down all the music known to mankind, or at least a healthy chunk of it, and interpolated it based on these 400 characteristics.

Pandora, then, is an extension of the efforts of the Music Genome Project. You go there, type the name of a song or an artist, and you are presented with either the song you typed, or a song that epitomizes the essence of the artist you requested. You listen to the song and click a button saying you like or dislike it. Pandora then generates a new song, by a new artist, that shares similar "genes" with the original.

So, basically, Pandora helps you find new music that you will probably like. It's awesome, and free, and you should check it out, like, right now. I have been using it a great deal these past few weeks, and it is pretty impressive.

On a totally different note, I went shopping on Black Friday last week, and while I did not go to any stores until about 8am, I found the entire experience to be interesting at the least, and, dare I say it, enjoyable at its best. I found a nice knife set for $20, some cheap DVDs at Circuit City, and other typical BF-type items. In the interest of full disclosure, I have to qualify that I went with my wife and her friend, and on my own it probably would not have been as fun. My recommendation for next year? Give it a try. You might like it.

And finally I have to say Hi to my aunt and cousin who came for a visit last weekend. We all had a great time with you, and I'm so glad we got to spend thanksgiving with you two.

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