Archive for the 'Features' Category

Top Playlists This Month

October 11, 2006

We’ve been going back and forth on the time period to use for the top playlists section of the index. Lately the new and top lists have been pretty similar so we just changed the top playlists to cover the previous month. If it looks like things are getting too static we can switch it back.

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Enhanced Album Cloud

October 7, 2006

Andrew has just released an updated version of his album cloud script. The album cloud displays your top played albums and sizes each cover by the number of plays. You can find a link to your cloud on the tools page of your Musicmobs profile.

The new version comes with some simple instructions for embedding the cloud on external sites, as well as Last.fm support. Make sure to check it out here:

http://andrewhitchcock.org/musicmobs/albumcloud.pl

Playing XSPFs in Rhapsody – REST API

August 24, 2006

One of the main features of the new version of Musicmobs is the ability to play playlists in Rhapsody. What you might not know is that the REST API we’ve created can be used to open other XSPF files into Rhapsody as well.

If you look at any of the “Play” links on Musicmobs, you’ll notice URLs that look like this:

http://www.musicmobs.com/player?xspf=http://xspf.musicmobs.com/playlist/ellie117/Indie.xspf

The key is the ?xspf= query string. As long as the XSPF you’re trying to open is hosted on the web, and properly marked up with metadata (<creator>, <album> and <title> elements for each track) our player should be able to grab it and do its best to find the songs in Rhapsody.

Where do you find playlists to open? For now there are really only two places you can get properly marked up XSPFs: Musicmobs and Last.fm. Finding XSPFs on Musicmobs is easy enough, but Last.fm takes a little digging.

If you look at the Audioscrobbler Web Services page you’ll see that they expose various data feeds in XSPF format. Any of these URLs should be valid to use with our REST API.

For example this URL will play the top tracks tagged ‘Rock’ on Last.fm:

http://www.musicmobs.com/player?xspf=http://ws.audioscrobbler.com/1.0/tag/Rock/toptracks.xspf

The one caveat is that Last.fm doesn’t include the <album> element in their XSPFs. This means that our player will only find the song in Rhapsody after it’s been cached from the Rhapsody Web Services API at least once. Since our cache is continuously being filled, our matching will improve over time.

Finally, since it’s unlikely that you want the player to load (and therefore resize) your current window, it’s best to add target=”_blank” to any player URL. The finished product should look something like this:

<a href=”http://www.musicmobs.com/player?xspf=http://xspf.musicmobs.com/playlist/ellie117/Indie.xspf&#8221; target=”_blank”>Indie Playlist</a>

Also, if anyone knows of other web sites that you can get fully marked up XSPFs, please leave a comment and we’ll check it out.

Musicmobs Upgrade

August 22, 2006

Welcome to the Musicmobs blog! We’ve just released a batch of new features, dive in to learn more…

Play in Rhapsody – Lately we’ve been pretty excited about Rhapsody. We’ve always wanted to provide a way to open playlists into a music subscription service but until now, no APIs were mature enough. The new Rhapsody Web Services API offered a great way to link into their service and play the majority of the songs in any playlist on the web. Clicking “Play” will search Rhapsody for all of the songs in the playlist (or song list). It doesn’t always find everything but this should improve over time.
To use this, you’ll need to download the Rhapsody plugin (you’ll be prompted at some point when you click a Play icon). You get 25 plays for free without registering, after that you’ll have to get a Rhapsody subscription for unlimited plays.
This is the first step in a multi-part integration. Next up is tracking play counts from Rhapsody.

Improved CSS – We redid the CSS for all the pages to make the site more “liquid”. Content will now stretch if you resize your browser window. This should make for much better browsing at higher resolutions. We also updated the headers and tweaked various other UI elements. Consider the layout 60% complete. More updates on this coming soon…

Tag Cloud – Always a useful way to represent a folksonomy. This was part of an index redesign with more of a focus on functionality. The cloud is based on popular tags for the last 2 months. The time interval may change depending on playlist flow.

New Tag Pages – We now break out the playlists by popularity and what’s new on the tag pages (for example the “indie” tag). This should make it easier to find interesting playlists that you may have missed the first time around.

Better Playlist RSS Feeds – All playlist RSS feeds now include links to play in Rhapsody and to download a XSPF for each playlist. We also added some playlist metadata like tags, creator and date created.

More RSS Feeds – There are now RSS feeds for new and popular playlists for each tag and new playlists for each artist.

This Blog – The news has been removed from the index and replaced by this WordPress blog. I think it’s going to be a big improvement since it will allow for more 2 way communication. We’ve entered our backlog of news and at some point soon we’ll tweak the CSS of the blog to make it look cool.

If you have any questions about the new features just let us know!

UPDATE: The Rhapsody integration looks like it’s working in IE now. Please let me know if you have any problems.

Top Albums RSS Feed

April 20, 2006

There’s a new RSS feed for your top played albums, you can grab it from the RSS button on your Albums page. One thing you may want to add to the URL is ?results=100 where 100 is the number of albums you want returned.

Once you have your feed url, be sure to check out Slide. You can make a scrolling flash badge like the page below by giving it the album RSS. Pretty neat!

See feed in action

New Playlist Tagging Interface

April 7, 2006

We’ve got another version of the tagging interface up for you guys to play with. You may need to clear your browser cache to get the new css and javascript, so be sure to do that if things look funky.

The main new addition is a clickable list of popular tags in the save box. Pick a playlist that has some tags to check it out. We also added dates for each user that saves the playlist and changed some colors. It’s all experimental so expect continued changes.

Musicmobs on Linux

April 10, 2004

You can now use Musicmobs on Linux! It’s not the easiest thing in the world, but it’s excellent none the less. You’ll need Rhythmbox and Bryan’s Rhythmbox Sync Script. Thanks to Bryan Donovan for making the jump.

iTunes Catalog Musicmobs Support

April 5, 2004

There is a new version of iTunes Catalog available that features Musicmobs support (syncing stats), among many other features. Be sure to check it out if you get the chance.