Archive for May 15th, 2008

Music collections on iTunes?

One feature that I am missing from iTunes (in addition to this one, of course) is “music collections”. We have 5 iPods in our household, and I am using 3 of them (16 GB iPod Touch, 8 GB iPhone, and 4 GB iPod Mini). I would like to use different iPods for each kind of music. For example, one iPod for commercially bought pop/rock music, one for freeware indie rock music, and one for electronic/dance. As I am a bit of a control freak, I just don’t like them mixed up because they don’t sound the same. Plus, not all my music+videos fit on my iPod Touch or the iPhone, so I am using all 3 devices.

Each time that I purchase, or rip, or add a new song in my iTunes library, I would like to be able to have the option to drop them into a specific collection of music. I know that there are smart playlists that you can possibly sort via “genre”, but thing is, each ripped CD or download features a different name for a genre. For example, for what I perceive overall as “indie rock”, it might be tagged as alternative, grudge, garage, alt.rock, rock, hard rock etc etc. So I can’t possibly go and change the tags of 5,000+ songs one by one. Instead, I need an easier drag-n-drop solution (while I am building the library) that keeps things separately: music collections. And each iPod would sync to one of these.

I understand that when iTunes first came out this feature didn’t make much sense, but 7 years into the iPod times, some people tend to have a whole collection of them. So I am pretty sure I am not alone in this request.

RE: Mikis Theodorakis my ass

Stormrider posted a very interesting and as always, right-in-the-mark blog post.

If you want to see what’s wrong with many Greek people today, you simply have to look at one person, who happens to be a good representative of the bunch: Mikis Theodorakis. He is an internationally known composer, and a politician. Even if you might never heard his name, you probably have heard his music somewhere.

And you don’t have to know him to judge him. You just need to read his — pretty objectively written — Wikipedia page (towards the bottom).

Let me vomit now.

Air Force Aims for Control of ‘Any and All’ Computers

I just read this over at Slashdot, and was funny, as I was thinking just yesterday that the future of computing won’t be a free utopia but a fully controlled environment.

There is no doubt in my mind that NSA/CIA/FBI already have “super” credentials (supplied by Microsoft) that can login to any Windows machine in the world. While this might sound like a conspiracy theory to you, it sounds like normal business to me. If I was working for them, that’s the first thing I would push towards. Apple is as vulnerable as Microsoft in my opinion.

Regarding Linux, they can always offer “patches” or whole frameworks that look strong at first sight (e.g. SELinux), even uploaded by a Joe Hacker, only that the guy might be working for them instead. Look at the recent Debian blunder. For many years now, no one knew that the SSH keys were weak. I don’t give enough credit to the OSS community to fix bugs or even ruthlessly test random patches that make it in. It’s so easy to slip in rootkits on OSS that’s not even funny.

And besides, there is always the chicken and the egg problem. Instead of trying to put rootkits on pieces of software, you do it once, in the compiler. Good luck trying to keep clean the compiler itself, because you always need a compiler to compile your compiler (and very old compilers don’t have all the features you need to compile a newer compiler).

In other words, these agencies use computers to do their job, the same way some do to hack them. So if you ever see a global rootkit unveiled, don’t get surprised. I expect nothing less from them. I would do the same thing if I was in their position.

Post 9/11, there is no such thing as “privacy”. Forget it. Or fight for it.