Audiobooks, Fahrenheit 9/11
Couple of thoughts today. I've found a new way to stuff even more stuff in my brain. Books on tape. You can download a whole book in the form of a bunch of MP3s(chapters) and burn them onto CDs. I think this might be a good time to get an MP3 player. My commute is 30 to 40 minutes a day so I figure I can "read" my current book, 1984, in a few weeks. I can't read normal books because of my short attention span so this is a good compromise.
There are obvious licensing issues here so I was thinking that someone should setup a website and convince James Earl Jones to read the classics. Nobody owns Shakespeare's works, the only cost involved in producing Hamlet in the form of a book are the printing and distribution. Those costs evaporate when you can distribute digitally. Maybe I'll setup a website. Needs a catchy name though. Project Gutenberg has a few Sherlock Holmes books read by a human as well as a bunch read by computer which sound like Steven Hawking. The few sites that aspire to do the same thing are all offline, most likely due to the bandwidth requirements. That's where Bit Torrent comes in.
It has to be inevitable that Bittorrent will be seamlessly embedded in to the KDE and Gnome windows managers for Linux and into the Longhorn Windows Shell. That way if you clicked on a .torrent link you would get the usual "file downloading" dialog box but with the file coming from multiple users instead of just one server. Maybe I should look into coding that. The only problem is that people would have to configure their routers for port forwarding. Not something to be taken lightly. Great blog post about this idea here. UPDATE: Looks like the minds and ears of BannedMusic.org have created a nice Java based wrapper(not a musician) that simplifies the download process. Should be interesting to watch. Another good blog discussion about it here.
I used BitTorrent to dowload and watch Fahrenheit 911 last night. I wasn't that impressed with the movie to be honest. It's a good documentary but his whiney, patronizing voice narrates you into insanity. I may just dislike Moore as much as Bush. The movie fits on two CDs and it is very nearly DVD quality. How you ask? Because DVDs use an old crappy compression mechanism, MPEG 2, and computers are capapble of better compression (MPEG 4). If anybody I know that reads this wants to borrow it just let me know.