More dynamic playlists for the iPod

I had written about the usefulness of dynamic playlists, ratings and tagging for organizing music on my iPod last year. Since then, I have loaded more music onto my iPod, and I was looking for ways to play the recently loaded music. In addition, I also found that just relying on the genre and ratings of songs to create dynamic playlists (the option can be found under the file menu) is not sufficient.

Looking at the play count of the files in iTunes, I found that over 2500 songs have never been played. So, I went about creating some more dynamic playlists. One had to be for songs that I have not yet listened to, while another for recently loaded songs. So, now I have the following dynamic playlists on my iPod:

  1. Top rated songs – for songs with a rating of 5 stars
  2. 4 stars – for the next best songs
  3. Recently added – for songs added in the last 60 days (this filter can be set in different ways)
  4. Low play count and unrated – for songs having play count of less than 2 (unrated songs is mainly to decrease the size of the playlist as high rated songs will feature in other lists) – useful for rating songs too
  5. Top rated Hindi songs – for songs having “Hindi” in the genre tag and rating >= 4
  6. Top rated Bengali songs – for songs having “Bengali” in the genre and rating >= 4
  7. Top rated Western – songs not having “Hindi” and “Bengali” in their genre and rating >=4

Now I find that the music is fairly well organized and I can listen to the types I want quite easily. Also for those looking to backup the contents of the iPod, there are some free alternatives like iDump. Also, the new versions of Winamp (5.3 onwards) also include plugins for backing up music from the iPod.

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Another virtual world coming up

I was going through my feeds today and came across a post on Scobleizer about a “New Virtual world coming from Australia“, which talks about another Secondlife like virtual world being developed. The virtual world is named Outback Online with the tag-line “User Generated Places”, and is being developed by Yoick. The basic aim of the project seems to be to provide a 3D social network. Right now, there is not much information available on the site or the blog, other than a beta sign-up form.

Useless Account – just for laughs

Another site I came across through one of my Google Reader subscriptions – Useless Account. It basically satirizes the rate at which people (me included) are signing up for new services that are mushrooming on the net. The site allows you to create an account and tinker around with it – that’s about it. Read the faqs section for some more laughs. And no, I have not signed up for an account on the site….. yet :-).

Make: iPod stethoscopes, chargers etc

I came across the Make: site through one of my RSS feeds, and it has quite a lot of interesting projects and podcasts on it. The site has quite a few projects for/using the iPod, including an iPod based stethoscope which can be used to record and playback heart sounds, a USB adapter and charger kit among many others. There are also many other projects like an open source mp3 player, an alarm clock that runs away and a wifi liberator.

Social networking through Google Reader

I have been using Google Reader for a while now. It is quite handy when one wants to be in sync with different feeds across different machines. Also, now it is possible to add feeds directly to it through Firefox 2.0, which makes it quite convenient to use. The other useful feature is the ability to share interesting entries. It is also possible to subscribe to feeds of others’ shared items.

In some ways, it is similar to social bookmarking, but the difference lies in the ability to browse and share the items of interface through a single interface. There is also a clip available which can be inserted into sites, similar to the dogear bookmarks. The import/export feature is also useful, as you can use Google Reader to transfer feed subscriptions across machines. Basic organization features include tagging and starring items. There’s also a mobile version available for those looking to read feeds on the move.