This is an image of yesterday evening. It’s 17mm, ISO 2000, f4 and 1/15s. I’ve used Noise Ninja against the noise and Topaz Detail to accentuate local contrast, mostly in the foreground.
Other than that I have made a change to my buying habits that was long due. My last three music purchases were digital downloads. Funnily enough this came totally by chance. While I installed software on my laptop (the one that I just use while being on the train to Carinthia), I wanted to download the latest version of JetAudio. JetAudio is the proprietary music player of Cowon, the company that produces the excellent iAudio players. I own one of them, because Cowon is one of the few companies who care to support the free OGG music format, and because I have originally started to rip my CDs to OGG, I currently have about 30.000 tracks in this format. OGG was originally superior to MP3, and it is a format designed and implemented as open source. Unfortunately Apple obstinately refused to support the format in their players. Well, so did I buying their hardware. I even filed a bug report and wrote them one or two mails, but of course I got no reply and nothing has changed.
Anyway. JetAudio was my preferred software player so far. It’s pretty OK but nothing special. Think of WinAmp or similar programs. Now, as I installed software recently, the download server for JetAudio was unbearably slow, so I decided to look for an alternative. I found Songbird, a Mozilla-based iTunes look-alike with similar functionality and all the usual Mozilla features like plugins and skins. I had looked into it at least two years ago, then it had not really impressed me, but in the time since it has really grown up.
Well, here I was with a new player, and like iTunes is linked to the iTunes store, Songbird has plugins for music stores. Here in Austria it offers integration with 7digital, a UK-based service and of course Jamendo.com and Magnatune.com. Integration of Jamendo does not even need a plugin, and in fact I currently hear the album “The Green Waltz” by “The Dada Weatherman“, an album released under Creative Commons, an album that I have downloaded from Jamendo for free. For 10€ I could also buy the album in WMV format, i.e. uncompressed full CD quality. I have no idea how many people do that, but I seriously consider it. It’s excellent music.
The three purchases from 7digital were Ella’s “Twelve Nights in Hollywood”, on CD available at around 50€, as 320kBit MP3 offered for about half of it, a Greatest Hits compilation by Blondie and the debut album of Melody Gardot. Well, it looks like my plastic buying times are over 🙂
Regardless of the music that I’ve talked about so far, the Song of the Day is “Twisted“. Not the Annie Ross classic that we had in “578 – Twisted“, not Joni Mitchell’s respectable version from “Court and Spark”, but instead the completely unrelated song from Annie Lennox’ 2003 album “Bare”. Hear it on YouTube.