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The Government Pays to Play That Tune

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Ross sent me this link: “SGER: A Music Search Engine Based on Aesthetic Similarity”

It’s a grant the National Science Foundation recently funded. From the abstract:

This SGER project aims to develop a prototype music search engine based on identifying aesthetic similarities. This engine will utilize power-law metrics to extract statistical proportions of music-theoretic and other attributes of music pieces (e.g., Pitch, Duration, Pitch Distance, Duration Distance, Melodic Intervals, Harmonic Intervals, Melodic Bigrams, etc.).

The engine searches for pieces that are aesthetically similar to the input piece using a mean squared error (MSE) approach. Preliminary testing has been done using the Classical Music Archives corpus (14,695 MIDI pieces), combined with 500+ MIDI pieces from other styles (e.g. Jazz, Rock, Country, etc.). Similar metrics have already been validated on aesthetic attributes of textual materials. Text results (author attribution, style identification, and pleasantness prediction) indicated an high level of accuracy.

Sounds cool!

Miracles of Modern Surgery

By - August 13, 2007

Wow. Had a check in with my doctor (update: that’d be Dr. Keith Raskin), a week after surgery. Things are going really well! Check out the before (note the far right lower bone, busted into three pieces – it’s hard to see the third, but it’s behind):

Hand Before

And the after (note the three screws):

Hand After

It’s really amazing. I have NO pain.

Driving on the Vineyard

By - August 12, 2007

Diggitmass

Driving home from Edgartown, coming into Vineyard Haven, I spied this car. Whose is it?! Kevin lives in CA, Jay lives in NY….

Google: Eyeing S3, EC2?

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This rather pedestrian news, reported by SEL, strikes me as possibly more interesting when you consider that Amazon’s EC2 and S3 are getting serious traction.

In short, Google, which made its entire reputation in mail on the idea of “(nearly) unlimited storage” is now rolling out the ability to pay for more storage.

The new service includes photo service Picasa.

Interesting.

A Reprieve For 2.0

By - August 11, 2007

Business2 20070301

Owen Thomas, who has got to be the best person possible to write this story, really nails it in this piece on the reprieve for Business 2.0, which I wrote for, and for which I root (thanks for the tip, Alex). This is particularly good:

The question, though, is why? Did social media save the magazine? Perhaps so, in a roundabout way. The Facebook group “I Read Business 2.0 — and Want to Keep Reading!” numbers more than 2,000 people, but that’s hardly enough for Time Inc. honchos, who deal with magazine circulations numbering in the millions, to pay notice. But Facebook, with its early-adopter audience, may have proved an ideal way to get the attention of serious prospective buyers.

Everything’s up in the air, of course. Time Inc.’s top brass could decide to refuse the offers. They could proceed with plans to fold some of the staff into Fortune. They could even — though this seems unlikely — decide that the buyers have a good idea in wanting to own the magazine, and reconsider holding onto it.

This much is clear, however. Business 2.0 has gone, overnight, from certain death to an uncertain life. It’s the kind of back-from-the-brink business-revival story that I used to read all the time. In the pages, naturally, of Business 2.0.

I have been through this period in a magazine’s life. It is not always fun. No. It’s never fun. But you know what, it should be. I have the sense that Quittner and his troops see it just as Owen does – it’s a great story. Live it to the fullest. It’s going to be remembered as an important time in your life someday.

Google's Video Purchase Experiment Kaput

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Sergey must have been serious about cutting back products (thanks KK):



As a valued Google user, we’re contacting you with some important

information about the videos you’ve purchased or rented from Google Video.

In an effort to improve all Google services, we will no longer offer the

ability to buy or rent videos for download from Google Video, ending the

DTO/DTR (download-to-own/rent) program. This change will be effective

August 15, 2007.

As a valued Google user, we’re contacting you with some important

information about the videos you’ve purchased or rented from Google Video.

In an effort to improve all Google services, we will no longer offer the

ability to buy or rent videos for download from Google Video, ending the

DTO/DTR (download-to-own/rent) program. This change will be effective

August 15, 2007.

Voice Post 4: AOL

By - August 10, 2007

In which I riff about AOL’s financial performance and its possible link to search. Links for this:

Henry got me thinking about it
Time Warner’s earnings
McKinley’s post
AOL earnings dragging down TW (IHT)