Re: [Rhythmbox-devel] Noise or How I learned to love the state of the Gnome audio software

I have used suggestions supported by various players, but this
dynamic playlist support leaves something to be desired. What I have
found is that all suggestions lead to mainstream artists/songs and at
some point stops offering suggestions of my obscure music.

I agree.  The user-generated nature of's relationships between artists
(and it's tagging) seems to distort the information it gathers.

At the risk of going off on a tangent here: I half disagree:the track/artist similarity data from the webservice has really improved a lot over the last year. I think they have honed their algorithms to alleviate some of the problems with what I call the 'Bob Marley' effect, where everythy continued similarity look upeventually leads to artists like Bob Marley or the Beatles, since they are so near-universally liked and played.

In the plugin I recently ported to Rhythmbox, I further reduce this effect by locally caching similarity results, which allows me to do reverse lookups, and keeping a list of backup songs, so I can backtrack out of dead ends.

In short I think the data is great, and allows you to do very cool things, but it requires a bit of thought. The same goes for the tagging in IOf you expect that people sometimes make mistakes or even commit wilful 'vandalism' by mistagging, the data can be used in interesting ways: It is possible to use the web API to get at your own personal tags only, which means you lose the social network aspect. The top tags for a track/album/artist will generally make sense, since mistakes and tagspam get filetered out.

The only thing that works poorly is looking up all the songs for one tag, especially if it is controversial one like a genre tag, and expect the results to conform to your definition of that tag only. Quod Libet allows me to put arbitrary tags on songs and selections of songs, and I use this feature to create interesing (to me) groupings, which are then synchronized to, so I have the same playlists available online. There are many other uses imaginable.

Sorry for the rant, and *no* I don't have shares or anything, I just really like their webservices API ;)

- eric casteleijn

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