Feb 072014
 

I don’t take many images right now. It may be the weather, it may be the project that I’m working on, I don’t know. What I do know is, that I may have solved my music history problem that I wrote about yesterday.

You remember: the problem is, that the only streaming service available here in Austria, that allows me to use music offline on my laptop (for instance during my weekly train commutes between Villach and Vienna), is Spotify, but Spotify severely lacks organization features for building a virtual “collection”, and what is there, playlists and playlist folders, can’t be saved. Thus I run danger of forgetting about my music history.

Enter apps. Spotify can embed apps, effectively plugins, that can add features to the Spotify desktop client. One of those apps connects Spotify with Last.FM, and that’s what I use now.

I have used some hours to set up my “library” on Last.FM. That means I have told them about the artists that I care about. Currently that are 861 artists, basically all of the artists in my collection of CDs and digital downloads. This will allow Last.FM to make suggestions according to my taste,

Additionally I have set Spotify up to tell Last.FM about every track that I play. That’s what Last.FM calls scrobbling. That alone would be no big improvement, but Last.FM offers various ways to get at your data.

One way is to request an export. This is not in real-time and according to the description it may take up to seven days to get your data out of the system. Nevertheless, it’s something that could be done once or twice a year for backup purposes.

The other thing is that Last.FM offers an RSS feed of each account’s last 10 tracks played. In the side bar of my blog (click through if you read this post in a feed reader) you see a visualization of my feed as it was when you loaded the page. It does not refresh, but when you refresh the page, it will be updated with real-time information from Spotify, relayed through Last.FM.

10 songs, that’s half an hour on average. In order to record my whole listening history, I’d have to read the feed about every 15 minutes, eliminate duplicates and save the new items in a database. Writing a small program to do that, that’s what I currently consider. Of course the database would have to be backed up as well, but if you spread your data among enough different cloud services, reliability can be very good.

Obviously I need a server connected to the Internet, and the shared hosting account for my blog does not offer me the option to run my own programs, but I’ll take care of that in a few days.

Today’s image has been taken on our short trip to Pordenone in northern Italy and the Song of the Day is “Stray Cat Strut” by Stray Cats. Hear it on YouTube or on Spotify if you have an account.

2661 – Fingerprints

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO  Comments Off on 2661 – Fingerprints
Jan 292014
 

Bloody fingerprints, that’s what this wall in a café in Pordenone reminds me of. Probably not the desired effect though 🙂

“Death Of A Ladies’ Man” is certainly not Leonard Cohen’s favorite among his albums, but it has some songs that show him in a remarkably unfamiliar style. “Fingerprints” is one of those songs. Hear it on YouTube.

2660 – Festival

 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO  Comments Off on 2660 – Festival
Jan 282014
 

There must have been some kind of festival in Pordenone. At least we saw a merry-go-round and someone selling balloons. Apart from that there was a small and rather bizarre demonstration of a neo-fascist party. Nobody seemed to care though 🙂

The Song of the Day is “Festival” from Francesco De Gregori’s 1976 album “Bufalo Bill”. Hear it on YouTube.

Jan 272014
 

The Teatro Comunale Giuseppe Verdi in Pordenone, Italy is a moderately impressive modern building. It suffers from being crammed into a much too small space, but of course it helps having a point of view from the roof of the building on the opposite side of the street, and having an extremely wide lens makes things easier as well. At least that’s the impression I get from the last image on this page. I didn’t have either, thus I had to get creative. The reflections of the windows were to my advantage though 🙂

The Song of the Day is “Teatro” from Paolo Conte’s 1995 album “Una Faccia In Prestito”. Hear it on YouTube.