Update: there is a lightweight browser plug-in that lets you play song samples without having to download and install the full Rhapsody client. When I tried the MP3 download service yesterday, I was unable to play the 25 free songs in that browser window--it only let me play 30-second samples. Today, using the same username and password, it started my 25-song count. So my major complaint with the service has been solved. Kudos to Rhapsody.
Google taps ‘Family Guy’ guy for Web series … Read more
Watch out, AmazonMP3: Rhapsody just joined the DRM-free MP3 club. The music-subscription service's new MP3 store sells individual tracks for 99 cents and albums for $9.99. And if you're one of the first 100,000 folks to create an account by July 4, you can get a free album.
Strings? You do have to provide a credit card when you set up your account, and you have to install Rhapsody's MP3 Download Manager (Windows only), which can automatically add downloaded songs to your iTunes library. With that done, you'll immediately find a $10 credit in … Read more
A correction was made to this story. See details below.
RealNetworks on Sunday announced several improvements to its Rhapsody music service, including a new online music store and integration with Verizon's V Cast mobile phone music service.
Taking a cue from competitors such as Amazon and Napster, Rhapsody's new Web-based music store sells a catalog of universally compatible (DRM-free) MP3 files from all four major music labels (Universal Music Group, Sony BMG, Warner, and EMI), as well as a selection of independents.
The new Rhapsody store represents a departure from the strictly software-based music subscription model on which … Read more
Another prestigious school is embracing Amazon's Kindle e-reader.
Princeton University has announced that it will start printing Kindle-edition textbooks this fall, according to a story in The Christian Science Monitor.
Princeton follows Yale, Oxford, and UC Berkeley in creating textbooks for the Kindle. In the United States, there are about 2,500 four-year universities, so Amazon still has a long way to go.
But the Kindle should appeal to university students better than other demographics.
In the early morning at Structure 08, AMR Research's Jonathan Yarmis described various tech trends around cloud computing. Mendel Rosenblum, a founder and technical lead behind VMware, outlined the role of virtualization in data centers.
Now Werner Vogels, vice president and CTO at Amazon.com, is talking about why Amazon is in the cloud computing business, how it got there, and why customers should want it. Instead of every company or developer doing the heavy lifting, dealing with the "muck" as Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos likes to say, Amazon opened up its software-as-a-service stack (Amazon Web Services) … Read more
I wanted a Kindle. I was ready to buy a Kindle. The iPhone spoiled everything.
I'm an avid reader of digital books and for months I had my eye on the Kindle, the digital reader from Amazon, with its high-contrast screen and PC-less book downloads. Then Apple announced that the iPhone 3G goes on sale July 11.
I'm now in second-guess hell.
I know Apple has said nothing about offering an e-reading application for the new iPhone. But what happens if Steve Jobs later surprises us or some developer turns the iPhone into a whiz-bang electronic reader? I'… Read more
I've gushed before about AmazonMP3, the online music store that sells DRM-free MP3s at reasonable prices. Head there today and you can get The Police's Synchronicity--not just the song, but the complete album--for only $1.99. Head there tomorrow and you'll find another album on sale for around the same price. Wowza.
This "MP3 Daily Deal" is a new thing at AmazonMP3. Lest you think it's a clearinghouse for crummy albums no one wants, I give you Exhibit A: Synchronicity (arguably The Police's best album). Exhibit B: Coldplay's Parachutes (one of last … Read more
Cloud computing is growing in popularity, thanks in large part to the availability of Web-based services that take some of the pain out of IT.
But when things break, it isn't always easy to know why: Is the problem in the application or in the cloud?
Hyperic, a San Francisco-based company specializing in Web management tools, has one answer. It's launching a new service, called CloudStatus, that reports on the health and performance of Amazon Web Services.
The free service, in beta testing now, works with Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud, Simple Storage Service, SimpleDB, Simple Queue Service, … Read more
If you're not one of the cool kids with a Kindle, the good news is that paper books are still quite popular and less likely to be taken at gunpoint by muggers. The sad truth is that browsing through them on the Web is not nearly as fun as loitering in a bookstore (or on the Kindle), which is why Zoomii was created.
Zoomii is a virtual bookstore with simple bookshelves that highlight Amazon.com's massive collection. It's set up to work just like Google Maps. You can zoom in and out, and simply drag your mouse … Read more