Quantum Mechanic

Content from 2012-02

Why people still torrent music

posted on 2012-02-10 17:15:32

Last night, I had a good time talking to my friend Lauren, who's doing an internship in publishing, book publishing that is, and Sarah and I got to talk about our experiences with ebooks.  So, today, when I found out that Kettcar had released a new album, I decided to try out the best that modern music purchasing had to offer and I looked the album up on Amazon.

There was even an exciting 1-click ordering button on the page, which I decided to try.  I was brought to another page that seemed to say I had bought the album, and gave me a link to amazon's web-based music player and then.... nothing.

Still nothing, 20 minutes later, in fact.

I could have torrented this album ten times over in that time. And I would be listening to it now, and not at whatever point in the future Amazon decides to give it to me.

Now the actually useful part

For those of you who want a nice clean process and are on Linux, let me direct you to clamz.  Clamz lets you use .amz file that amazon will let you download to download music directly to your computer.  Those using fedora can get at it with

sudo yum install clamz

and I'm led to believe that Debian users can chant their own incantations for it as well.  It's a commandline tool, but it only does one thing that's important, so the spell is just

clamz [amazon-file].amz

which will download all of the music that file tells it about into whatever folder you're in.  Then, you're all set.


I should have known

posted on 2012-02-07 15:46:44

I was just checking out Shuffletron, which I found by way of this awesome article about writing an assembler for NES programs in lisp.  Apparently, Suffletron is a console-based music player written in Lisp!  Well, I love things written in Lisp, so I obviously needed to try this out.  I cloned the github repo, and was happy to see a familiar Makefile sitting in the new directory, chanted the required "make" incantation, and...
sbcl --noinform --no-userinit --disable-debugger \
--eval "(require :asdf)" \
--eval "(load \"build-sbcl.lisp\")"
"initial thread" RUNNING
component :MIXALOT-FLAC not found, required by #<SYSTEM "shuffletron">

What happened first

So, apparently I'm missing this mixalotlibrary.  Oh no! I never figured out how asdf worked well enough to put all of mixalot's asd files in the right places... Something about

and er...

What should have happened first

Oh, I need this mixalot library.
(ql:quickload "mixalot")

What followed and, ultimately, failed to happen

Unfortunately, after the mixalot stage, I had a lot of trouble getting mixalot-flac, which quicklisp happily loaded in another sbcl which was in the mixalot source directory, and then refused to load through a number of different means until I
(push #p"/path/to/mixalot" asdf:*central-registry*)

'ed and loaded

though asdf.

Then, I needed to install libmpg123, which I didn't seem to have.

Then, I got errors about a library called "gen0.so" that the build script couldn't open. Being named gen0, I had no idea what it was. I tried the 'continue' option from sbcl, and it built, but I was afraid. Suffletron opened, asked me for my library's path, and then dropped into the debugger because of an unknown library call, I assume, to gen0.

Perhaps some day, I'll get this working.