All Geek to Me

September 9, 2008

Apple Genius

Filed under: Geek Stuff — britinla @ 10:08 pm

One of the advantages of having a second computer is the freedom to try new software without the risk of messing up critical functions. Tonight I downloaded iTunes 8 to my iBook. The major new feature is Genius, which creates playlists based on a song selected from your library, which should give a more musically coherent experience than the old Party Shuffle mechanism.

iTunes 8

iTunes 8

I selected “Teenage Kicks” (aka The Greatest Pop Song ever written) and the playlist includes Jam: Going Underground, The Stranglers: No More Heroes. Iggy Pop:The Passenger. An experience akin to Pandora/, but from your own music collection.

The Genius also offers recommendations from the iTunes store based on the selected song. With No More Heroes selected, it shows a couple of Stranglers albums, a handful of Stranglers tracks that I don’t have in my library and a set of recommendations from bands like The Damned. This is not a feature that the weak willed should turn on.

There is also a new album list view and new visualizer patterns which I have yet to try. Starting up iTunes for the first time was slow as the Genius worked its magic across 14Gb of music. I shall wait a few days before installing it on my main PC which is used to sync to my iPhone.



  1. The drawback is you have to submit the entire contents of your music library to Apple. And what else will they use that information for? Another example of info-rape. I am happy to forgo this “feature”.

    Comment by @mmonyte — September 10, 2008 @ 2:30 pm

  2. lol @ info rape… Amazon is the biggest one of that and they make no bones about it. They happily suggest stuff to you on the back of what you have looked at or bought on their website. I don’t see this as any different!

    Comment by Amber — September 10, 2008 @ 7:58 pm

  3. What Amazon don’t tell you – and you need to dig very deep to opt out – is that they share that data with other companies. It is 4 or 5 years since I came across this, and when I went back to look for the option, it had vanished.

    I reuse to have supermarket “loyalty” cards on the same basis. They are used to harvest details of your purchasing habits and the “savings” are subsidised by the companies they sell that information on to.

    Comment by @mmonyte — September 11, 2008 @ 2:24 am

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