It doesn’t take a Genius

One of the rumoured new features in iTunes 8 is the Genius which according to Kevin Rose’s blog “makes playlists from songs in your library that go great together“. That got me thinking… how will it achieve that?

I can see it working in one of two ways. Firstly there’s the algorithm method – some clever coding akin to what they do with Pandora or in applications like (the name escapes me right now). For that to be the case, Apple’s developers would have had to have done a lot of research or have bought out a company that already does it. Can’t say I’ve seen anything like that in the news.

The other method is the for iTunes to track what you listen to and then make recommendations based on what other iTunes users who listened to the same track, then chose to listen to. The second method, which I suspect is more likely, means iTunes phones home every time you listen to a track and Apple then builds a ‘Who Likes What’ database from which it’s recommendations are made.

I’ve never had much joy with services that use the second method, much prefering the way Pandora does it, but it will be interesting to see what Apple comes up with. Sadly I still don’t think a ‘Watch Folders’ feature will make it into iTunes 8 which speaks volumes about Apple’s attitude to it’s users.


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