April 8, 2004 at 9 AM
Garçon, What Do You Recommend?
Here’s an interesting idea. Some students at the University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana) have designed a Music Recommendation System for iTunes. It works by compiling the individual ratings that users give songs in their libraries to produce a list of the top songs in the world. Sort of like an Internet Top 40 without the soft vocal stylings of Casey Casum. Or to put it another way, it’s like what would happen if Google were in charge of music selection instead of slimy record companies bribing spineless radio stations.
Unfortunately, the system told me it would be 15 hours before my recommendations are computed — it must be getting popular already. That said, the more users who sign up, the better the recommendations would be, in theory.
Update: According to its calculations, the best song ever is “Smalltown” by Lou Reed & John Cale, from John Cale’s album Songs for Drella. Now why didn’t I think of that?