I currently subscribe to 99 podcasts, and now that I have a ton of content to listen to I need a better way to manage all of the data. I employ several Smart Lists to assist me with separating categories and iPod syncing, but I wish it were easier to manage them.
If I had my way I’d create a way in the main Podcast library to see which Podcast is in what Smart List. Color coding would be a nice, easy way to handle that. Also, why, oh, why can’t I just drag and drop a Podcast from the Podcast library onto a Smart Play List to be added automatically? And it makes me NUTS that if I want to search for new Podcasts and want to listen to more then one of them, I have to continuously go back and recreate my search to re-find what I just found. Hey Apple! Why can’t I have a BACK button after I hit subscribe?
Then I’d add tabs, bookmarks, and a favorite artist(s) area and/or categories to the iTunes store. While we’re at it I’d like to block artists I can’t stand. Like say – Madonna. This would really personalize my ITMS store for me. Have you ever used Apple’s “Just for you” beta section in the ITMS? This is a great idea but it has a major flaw. It only bases its recommendations on the music I’ve purchased from the ITMS with other buyer’s purchases or manual intervention. Yes of course I remember the flack Apple took for the “mini ITMS” calling home but I’d LOVE to have the option to feed my entire playlist to a database that could mash up my favorites with my purchases and with other users’ favorites, purchases, and similar blocked artists.
There are a few other music web sites that offer possible solutions but they all fall short.
MOG.com has a cool technology that tracks all of your music but it uses social networking to make recommendations. This could work but requires too much work, and I don’t use it for the same reasons I don’t use myspace: it’s boring. Pandora.com makes great recommendations but you have to manually enter all of your favorites. There is no way I have the time to do that. I have thousands of songs in my library. Amazon has 2 pieces of the puzzle. They have a user section that lets you save favorites and they have a huge database of purchases but the don’t work together and you still need to manually input your favorites. Why does Amazon recommend the Spice Girls when I buy a Clash CD? I’m sorry but the statistics alone provide very lame results.
I have yet to try Urge or Napster but I doubt they are doing what real Audiophiles are looking for either. Maybe I’m wrong. Please write to me if I am.
Robert @ MyMac.com