Addicted to novelty since 2001

MP3Tunes: An Online Locker for Your Music

This looks pretty cool–it’s an online music locker for your digital music collection. Here are some notes from the entry on Boing Boing:

You can store all of your own music, making your entire music collection playable from any browser in the world. Plus you can also sync that entire music collection and play lists to multiple computers with a single mouse click….

– Oboe is the only online music locker. There are photo lockers, email lockers, general purpose storage, even video lockers but no music lockers and music is ideal for lockers because it’s used repeatedly from multiple locations.
– $39.95 per year for unlimited storage and unlimited bandwidth. No per gb billing for either storage or bandwidth.
– Works on Mac/Win/Lin with MP3, AAC, WMA and Ogg files.

You know, the more I think about this, the less I like it. Currently I have five versions of my music library:

  1. The ‘master’ version on my desktop computer.
  2. A slightly out-of-date version on my backup external hard drive.
  3. A subset (maybe 60%) on my 20 GB iPod.
  4. Another sizable subset on my Apple PowerBook.
  5. Another sizable subset on my wife’s PowerBook.

Presumably Oboe (which reminds me too much of Odeo, the podcasting directory) would enable me to dispense with numbers 2, 4 and 5. However, I often–nay, almost always–want to listen to music on my PowerBook when I’m not connected to the Internet, so that eliminates 4 and 5. All I’m doing is replacing one local archive for a synchronized archive on the Web, and paying CAN $45 per year for the privilege. I’m not sold yet.

That said, I do like the Oboe website–it’s tres 2005 (rounded corners for everyone!).

A few weeks ago I checked out Streampad, a free service that enables you to access your locally-hosted digital music collection from any browser. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get it to work. It’s in beta, so I might give Streampad another try in three months.

UPDATE: I misunderstood the Boing Boing notes. It turns out they have a basic, free version and a premium version at CAN $45 a year. This chart explains the difference. Well, it doesn’t so much explain, as throw a bunch of curious terms at us. What the heck do ‘Webload’ and ‘Sideload’ mean? I’m sure I could figure it out by digging around the site, but I ought to be able to do so from this page.

3 Responses to “MP3Tunes: An Online Locker for Your Music”

  1. Alex Harford

    Disclaimer: I’m a Linux weenie (but I think you already know that).

    I store all of my mp3’s on my MythTV box and I use Jinzora to access them as a web based front end.

    In the future I’m going to set up a NAS device with RAID goodness, but for now it’s going to an external hard drive.

    At work, I load songs by artist into iTunes, and at home I use the Jukebox feature to output them from the server, which plays on my home stereo.

    Jinzora runs on Windows too I believe, check it out at http://www.jinzora.com.

  2. Anonymous

    Was expecting to be impressed by the web site. I guess rounded corners are OK but what about those muted colours. Aren’t they out yet? Check out Orb.com for a good visual.

  3. Darren

    Anonymous: These are asthetic debates, but my example is far more ‘in’ than yours. We’ve seen fading gradients and gradiated photos for years. Also, the semi-transparent white boxes under ‘Learn More’ are very 2003.

    Both sites do an okay job of navigation, but I think they both need clearer, more immediately comprehensible affordances to help users decide where to go.

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