Russian online music site ?

Now this is very interesting indeed.  A Russian online music site has come to my attention today called  You buy your music per megabyte and they will supposedly encode your purchased songs in whatever file format you want, including Apple’s AAC.  The real kicker is that it only costs you $5 to download 500 MB worth of music.  Do the math and that amounts to $0.01 per megabyte or $0.04 per song (based on average song file size of 4 MB).  


Playfair Update

Ever since the Apple Cease and Desist letter, some of the prominent members of the Open Source software community in India have presented some valid arguments for its existence…

PlayFair does not give the user any special facilities that Apple itself has not given the user.

PlayFair requires a valid key from Apple to convert the format of music downloaded from iTunes.  PlayFair cannot convert downloaded songs’ formats without authorized keys.

PlayFair is not a music distribution program.  All PlayFair does is convert songs from one, restricted format to another, less restricted format.

PlayFair is not a method for making illegal copies of iTunes songs.  PlayFair by itself cannot be used to copy music to CD, distribute on a peer-to-peer (P2P) sharing network, play music or edit songs.

PlayFair saves time in converting songs.  The Apple iPod permits the iTunes user to make a music CD out of iTunes songs.  After that the user can convert the songs in that CD to MP3 or another digital format for playing on portable, non-Apple music players.  By converting iTunes songs directly to a common digital format, PlayFair shortcuts this sequence by eliminating the need to make a CD and then convert it.

Trying to stop dissemination of a tool that permits legal licensees of songs from iTunes to play them on non Apple-authorized hardware is purely a business loss prevention strategy from Apple.

As much as I support and respect Apple for its products, I believe that if Apple wins, it may have some negative ramifications for the rest of the industry.  


NHL Playoff Predictions

Here are the second round matchups for the drive to the Stanley Cup championship along with my predictions.

Western Conference

  • (1) Detroit Redwings vs. (6) Calgary Flames
    Pick Calgary to win series 4-2
  • (2) San Jose Sharks vs. (4) Colorado Avalanche
    Pick San Jose to win series 4-2

Eastern Conference

  • (1) Tampa Bay Lightning vs. (7) Montreal Canadiens
    Pick Tampa Bay to win series 4-3
  • (3) Philadelphia Flyers vs. (4) Toronto Maple Leafs
    Pick Toronto to win series 4-2

We’ll see how many I get right at the end of it all. It’ll be interesting to see what you, the readers, predict. Feel free to agree or disagree.