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This Week On The Internet: Itís all about the music

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There exists a spectrum upon which two different kinds of music lovers fall: those who absolutely adore classic rock radio because they can hear "Thunderstruck" 16 times an hour, and those who start fidgeting if they hear the same chord progression twice in one song. Everyone's met one of the latter-they're the people who have an mp3 library of over 4,000 songs-all in a single play-list set to shuffle-who have actually filled an 80gb iPod, and who are great DJs for parties because everyone leaves with at least one new band to pursue. The Internet is a haven for these people and even those whose musical tastes aren't so expansive will at least find something new if they go to the following links:

Musicovery

What do you feel like listening to today? Something dark and energetic? Or maybe something more positive and calm? Musicovery creates a 'road' of music recommendations based on where the user clicks on a matrix based on tempo and mood. Further tweaking can disable music from various genres, resulting in a continuous radio station that is usually pretty close to exactly what the listener is into, if a little bit mainstream for the musical palates of some.

www.musicovery.com

Last.fm

There's a saying: "Everybody thinks they're an above-average driver." The same is true in music: of course your taste in music is better than that of your neighbour who plays "Sandstorm" non-stop all hours of the morning. Nobody's denying that. Those needing more of an affirmation of their musical eliteness should look no further than Last.fm. Using a plugin, Last.fm sends track titles to its server, where it creates a comprehensive list of similar music. It then connects people with similar tastes so they can have in-depth discussions of why Joy Division was better than New Order. As well, Last.fm radio streams songs from musical 'neighbours'-the ones with similar tastes, not the ones that listen to bad techno-enabling users to find more of what they like.

www.last.fm

ReBirth

Of course, the best way to make sure you don't hear the same music again and again is to make it yourself. While learning guitar or piano might be a bit too much effort for some of us, the rest can make wicked-cool techno with ReBirth. Recently released free of charge by its creators, ReBirth is a Roland 303/808 synthesizer emulator preset with a bunch of decent rhythms so it's ready to play with after installing. This means zero musical knowledge is required to lay down phat, phunky, ph-prefixed beats. Furthermore, a vibrant community of users contribute songs and even mods for the program, meaning your dreams of rockin' out Fatboy Slim style can finally be realized.

www.rebirthmuseum.com

Have a crucial tech question? Is something on fire? Is your cat in your PC, eating your megahutz? Email aendrew@gauntlet.ucalgary.ca!

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