Millions of us adore last.fm. Why aren’t Google, Amazon & Apple trying to copy it?
I’m one of the many people who love last.fm. I love getting a view of my listening habits over the course of years, and I love being able to see what my friends have liked and have been listening to lately. There are things about last.fm that I would like to see changed/added, but it’s a great site for music sharing.
And in the days when it was active, I found that the wall page on Lala to be extremely useful: seeing what friends of mine had listened to and liked.
Lala and last.fm
got so close to creating the perfect simple music sharing site. Why is it so hard for Google, Apple and Amazon—companies with more than enough resources to finish the job—to give us something great?
What people want from a social music site:
- To be able to share what their music statistics are (like last.fm)
- To be able to see what their friends are listening to and liking
What I’d love to see is a Facebook-wall type page that can either show only the songs that your friends have liked or show you a constantly updating stream of what your friends are currently listening to. I think that would be extremely addictive.
But the simple would be easy to implement. So why hasn’t anyone done it? Apple even bought Lala and would have easy access to people’s iTunes XML files and yet still failed mightily with Ping. Maybe Google has something up their sleeve for Google Music and Plus, but how tough would it be to, say, have your thumbs up tracks show up in Buzz? Or be able to put what you’re listening to now in Google Music on your profile page?
It’s too simple of an idea for it not to be done better already.
The first apps I installed on my new iMac
My shiny new iMac arrived on my doorstep last week (in spite of Fed Ex’s inability to deliver it to the correct address), and I started up the Mac migration assistant to pull all the files and settings from my laptop, but…well, long story short, I decided to just start completely fresh: install the programs as I need them.
It’s a decision that’s made my new computer surprisingly fun, even if it’s made me swear angrily at it more than a few times as the judgment of the iSight beats down on me as if to say THIS IS THE LIFE YOU CHOSE.
It’s been interesting to me to see what downloads I went to first; a clear indicator of what’s most important to me on my computer. I moved over my iTunes library first, and then got to downloading. In order: 1. Google Chrome
Because Safari sucks. I mean, it doesn’t IE suck, but it Blogger sucks. At least. And seeing as how this is where I’d be going to get everything else I needed, it was a clear stop one.2. Dropbox
All the files that I need in one easy download. Dropbox is the best. If you don’t already have it, you need it. Get it through this link
and you’ll get a little extra storage space. 3. Google Notifier
Because I’ve gotten slightly addicted to the little “a-bong-bong” noise when I get a new email.4. Quicksilver
I’ve never used Quicksilver to anywhere near the level it could be used, but being able to launch applications from the keyboard has become a huge part of my computing life, to the point where I feel slightly nauseated when I have to open up apps from the Start menu on the PC. Okay…not nauseated, but damn close.
Google’s QSB is the natural successor to Quicksilver, but until Quicksilver quits working, that’s my go-to.
(side note: I found this tutorial video
to be very helpful when I first started with Quicksilver)5. iscrobbler 1.5 (for last.fm)
Being a geek for music, history, and stats, I’m obsessed with my last.fm profile
. I don’t want my last.fm profile to miss a thing that I play, so this was an early stop for me.
There was a problem, though: neither the official last.fm scrobbler or the most recent version of iscrobbler would transfer plays from my iPod to my last.fm profile. Which make both of them worthless. It seems to be a problem with Macs with external hard drives, but no one seemed to have an answer. So I went back to the one version of the iscrobbler that I knew worked: way back to 1.5.
As a side note, it’s amazing to me when companies don’t ensure that their core product doesn’t work perfectly. 6. Tweetdeck
My use of Twitter was transformed when I started using Tweetdeck. Before, it was a service that I used and liked, but never quite got. I tried Seesmic and I’m not sure why it seemed so confusing to me, but it did, and Tweetdeck was the Twitter translator that I needed. 7. Transmission
A great, lightweight Mac bittorrent client. If you’re into that sort of thing. Which I’m not.
What about you? What would be a crucial installment for you on a new computer?Note: my use of that iMac image should not be construed as an endorsement of the Star Trek movie, which will not only never show on my iMac, but will hopefully never show on another screen in front of my face ever again.