Discriminating indiscriminately...

Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Music trends

Last.fm is great site for finding out more about music, for recording your own music preferences, and potentially connecting to others with similar preferences. I've not used the latter function, although it is interesting to see how many people out there have eerily similar music preferences.

Interestingly, I see Google has tentatively moved into the same field with Music Trends, a Labs project. It's nowhere near as fully featured as Last.fm, but certainly one can see the potential there. Similarly, they use a local client (in this case Gtalk) to snoop on a music player to upload the playstream to the server.

The links from the Trends page lead to an artist/song customised search result page. I had rather hoped to see a Trends-like chart showing temporal popularity, but I suppose they're not implementing the infosthetics fodder first and are concentrating on the basic features. Certainly looks like the monetisation is not going to be an afterthought, here!

For now, last.fm is safe since it offers song previews and you can usefully tag songs. Usefully, last.fm artist/song pages often rate highly in search results too. Perhaps music is too specialised to have a generic solution be worth using!