recent tracks in flash

If you’ve been wondering when the code was going to return, well, here it is. Its a little app to show you your [tag]recently played tracks[/tag] from [tag][/tag] is a great site if you like music, and who doesnt like music? So whats it all about?

As they say ‘You get your own online music profile that you can fill up with the music you like. This information is used to create a personal [tag]radio[/tag] station and to find users who are similar to you’

One really nice feature is that a lot of the data is freely available from the site in a variety of formats. This has prompted some people to create handy little scripts that generate sigs which show what you have just been listening to. Most of them have been made using php and GD to generate a graphic, or just plain ol html. So i thought this would be a perfect opportunity to do the same in [tag]Flash[/tag], but using only open source tools and libraries (You dont need the flash IDE installed to build it..)

You can download a zip of the code from here.

To build it you will need swfmill and MTASC, and to make your life easier i’ve included an ant build file.
The build file requires the as2 [tag]ant[/tag] tasks created by Simon Wacker which you can grab from here.

Also included in the zip is a lovely font created by the nice people at orgdot and a little php script that will cache the response from so you dont hammer their servers (they ask that you dont make more than 1 request a second..)

For now the implementation is very basic, im sure theres plenty of improvements and extras that can (and should) be added. Drop me a comment if you do something interesting with it.

and if you want to see it in action you can go here

Give it away / Take it back

I like this idea a lot. Its all too easy in these times of manufactured obsolescence to just throw away things without any consideration of their potential usefulness to others and to the potentially damaging effects on the environment caused by the disposal.

One thing that I have experienced which shows a stark contrast between a rich country (the UK, where im originally from) and a poorer country (Macedonia, where I am now) is the attitude towards consumption and disposal of goods. A lot of people in the UK think nothing of throwing away and replacing things which can be fixed, could be useful to others or have even just ‘gone out of style’, whereas here (and im sure the same applies to a lot of countries around the world) the attitude is more careful and considered (although the influence of unachievable aspirational advertising is starting to erode that attitude)

Which brings me nicely to art not ads, which ‘is the start of a campaign to replace intrusive advertising in public spaces with more thought-provoking content’

Check them out and offer some help if you can. Signing the art not ads pledge is a good start.

Step to Noam you get done in.

After a particularly shabby interview with Noam Chomsky, the Guardian have realised the error of their ways and published an apology.

About time too, I wonder how many times he’s going to have to deal with the simple misunderstanding that supporting the idea of free speech doesnt mean you agree with what the person chooses to say.

As he points out in the superb documentary Manufacturing Consent, freedom of speech means freedom for exactly the views and opinions you dont agree with, otherwise where is the freedom?


Free Music

Everyone likes free stuff and these days theres a lot of music you can get *legally* for free. Irdial put out a lot of decent records and in an act of benevolence embraced the Free Music Philosophy

This is a good thing.

So go and grab yourself some classics like Neuropolitique and Aqua Regis.

While youre at it heres some other net labels putting out good music, get your ears round some of these