August 17th, 2002

London summer evenings

The August weather has improved somewhat. Running a pre-Bay Area trip errand last night, I walked down from the office on Wigmore Street to Fortnum and Mason, through the wide streets of Mayfair with their rich red brick buildings, before cutting through Berkley Square. No nightingales, but plenty of cows - as it had been colonised by a herd from the cow parade. One cow was obviously painted just for rowanf...

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I took a bus back towards Putney, getting off at Putney Bridge. There I wandered down to the riverside, to watch the water for a while, at catch the cool river breeze. The sun was gently setting over Putney Bridge, turning the river golden.

The view from bridge to bridge, panning east west between the Putney tube bridge (with added District line train - for the truly sad it's an Edgware Road-Wimbledon branch train), along the south bank of the Thames and the residential areas of East Putney, and then on to Putney Bridge itself. Click on the image for a larger version...
  • Current Music
    Radio 4 in the background

Instant streaming MP3 servers...

.. just add server configs.

marypcb and I have a fairly hefty collection of MP3s on the house server. Unfortunately that means it's quite difficult keeping media player catalogues up to date, especially as I now rip everything I buy as soon as it gets into the house. No matter what player I use, be it Winamp, Media Player, MMJB or iTunes, there's always the long and tedious process of recataloguing the files...

Then I saw a mention on Boing Boing (where else?) of Andromeda. It promised to be a low cost, easy to install web-based media streaming server. The documentation made it look easy to set up, so I signed up and received the 33K file in my inbox in just a few seconds. It took about the same amount of time to unzip the file in the server MP3 directory, and to set up the house server's copy of IIS to use that directory as a virtual directory. I'd recommend setting up a preferences file, as some of the defaults don't quite fit the way I work with music - but that didn't take long to get working, either. While I'm using the ASP version on a Windows server, you also have the option of a PHP script - so it'll run on OS X or pretty much any other OS with a PHP port. It'll even run as a portlet on a Nuke or similar portal site.

So now I have a URL on the house network where I can go to choose the music I want to hear, and see just what's been recently added.

It's an iPod for the web.

I like it. A lot.
  • Current Music
    Propaganda - Outside World - p-Machinery (Beta Mix)