There as recently been a load of updates put out by google for their various apps in preparation for or to get people used to, Android L. I have really liked most of them, nice clean look although the colour scheme seems to be somewhat bland, this I presume is to not distract the user from the content they want to look at. However, the new Gmail app not only has a horrible new look but one or two new features that suck to the extreme.
I am off course talking about the additional feature to add other accounts, nothing wrong with that as some people will like it and make use of. What as prompted me to rant and write is because there is no choice in the addition of other accounts. I found that they were just added with no consent of the user/owner of the device. It really sucks that the user who decides and wants to keep everything separate has no choice! I have decided therefore not to use the app on my tablet on which I updated and not to install the update on my phone.
I will hopefully find a solution to fix this and write an update when I find the solution on how to stop the app from adding other email accounts without my consent.
The good news however is that I have managed to get an invite to googles inbox which I already consider far better than the actual gmail app ever was.
This past week music streaming and in particular, Spotify as been in the news with Taylor Swift (who ever she is), pulling her music from Spotify and giving reasons as to why (I think she is a hypocrite because she has left her stuff on youtube where you and every other person listens for free). It as highlighted one of the problems faced by musicians today. Musicians from all genres have for decades had to fight/put up with various lessening of their income in particular thanks to the internet. I have touched on the subject before concerning illegal downloads but streaming is a whole different ball game. The whole thing has highlighted the plight of musicians not getting paid what they deserve. I personally consider streaming a good ideal as it enables people to find new bands if using radio feature or listen to new music while saving up for the album (in my case spent /gone waayyy over their music allowance).
However, despite coming out in favour of Spotify and others I feel that it is about time that free streaming needs to end! People need to learn to pay for their music and support their favourite bands. I also think that musicians are acting grossly unfair by, has I see it, picking out Spotify in particular. They need to act against Youtube as well, it is well know that many people use Youtube to listen to music for free.
So who’s fault in all this? Everyone.
The solution is difficult to find but the general public need to be educated that music needs to be paid for because otherwise the artists will not have the money to continue. But having said this I am convinced that they really don’t care about what they listen to. Just look at the charts, listen to public radio, etc. The music mostly sucks because the good stuff as been knocked out of the way because people just don’t care!
This all comes at a time that I have more or less settled into a personal music revolution or a reverse to old habits combined with new internet advantages. I have started buying vinyl again because it sounds better and not prone to being lost due to faulty harddrives, failing that, CD’s. If I do download then I only do it if the files are ogg format or something else better than mp3 (which sucks big time). This does of course mean that my subscription to emusic is no more and if anything thing changes with their downloads then I will be unable to update the post on that subject.
For a long time I have searched for and tried a large number of music players for Linux. I have tried most of them, Kaffine, Nightingale, Amorak amongst others. There are a number of players aimed at the Gnome and similar desktops based on it but I stopped using when I returned to my preferred KDE (I really didn’t think much of them anyway).
I haven’t used Kaffine for a long time, I felt when I first tried it that it was more any media centric and didn’t like it at all. Songbird was great until they stopped developing it so I moved over to Nightingale which I have written about in the past. When it first appeared it was great and showed so mush promise but as things continued more and more things seemed to not work or fail. This is a real shame because I really liked it but alas we parted ways and it all seems to have gone quiet, nothing on twitter or google plus.
While I have been back with KDE I found so-lance in Amorak which has been working great but seemed bland and un-customisable. About a week ago I realised that no updates had come through for it and when I checked the website I found I was indeed correct, I read that nothing had appeared for close to a year has they claimed that a large bug was causing problems which they were trying to fix and would enabl them to release an update which would give features found in Amorak 1+. Several of these I have missed greatly such as changing appearance.
It was at this point that I remembered Clementine, for some reason I had ignored it. Based on Amorak 1+ it appears to have been updated somewhat and so I am impressed and has become my now default player on my laptop. However, I can think of a couple of things that I would add or change if given half the chance. The first would do away with the files listed on the side and a panel along the top showing albums covers that when clicked on will start the album playing, this would also be good on touch screens as well (probably better). The reason I like this idea is because I recognise an album by its cover better than its title in a lot of cases and so find it easier to find what I want to listen to. The internet options is well done but need checking particularly Last Fm. It may be better to be able to select which internet sources the user wants be be visible for use as most of the ones showed are of no interest to me. I will be watching to see how this and other music players develop!