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Old Sep 11, 2008, 09:14 AM   #1
PeteB
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iTunes 8 - How does "Genius" actually work?

Just an idle thought, I've not really played with it that much.

Just how does iTunes/genius know what songs go together? Is it based on what other users have got in their playlists that contain set songs? If so, can we expect the Genuis results to become better (or more diverse) over time for particular songs? Or is it more computational, looking at BPM and the "form" of the songs (however that could be calculated)...?
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 09:18 AM   #2
bertpalmer
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It works by comparing what you are listening to, to a huge database of music that is linked to songs in similar genre/style.
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 10:47 AM   #3
cal6n
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeteB View Post
Just how does iTunes/genius know what songs go together? Is it based on what other users have got in their playlists that contain set songs?
As I understand it, yes.

Quote:
If so, can we expect the Genuis results to become better (or more diverse) over time for particular songs?
Yes. As more libraries are added, the predictions should improve.

Quote:
Or is it more computational, looking at BPM and the "form" of the songs (however that could be calculated)...?
I don't think it's that clever. I've seen a 140-155 BPM jump from tune to tune, although I don't have BPMs listed in iTunes. Maybe if I did, they'd be used but I have better things to do than measure the tempo and edit around 6,000 tunes, on the off chance that it may improve the playlists a bit!

To be honest, the genius feature puts some really good playlists together out of my library. I'm really looking forward to the iPhone update.

It's not perfect, though. Some tunes return an error, but I expect that to improve over time.
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 11:39 AM   #4
hank-b
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I was worried Genius wouldn't pick up files which I've ripped off vinyl (because I'm too cheap to buy them again on CD or the iTunes store), but it does - the "Lost in Music" selection below comes from ripped vinyl.

- HB, pleased with Genius
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 11:45 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hank-b View Post
I was worried Genius wouldn't pick up files which I've ripped off vinyl (because I'm too cheap to buy them again on CD or the iTunes store), but it does - the "Lost in Music" selection below comes from ripped vinyl.

- HB, pleased with Genius
As long as your ID3 tags are all in line and the stuff is available on iTunes, you're good to go.
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 11:58 AM   #6
acxz
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If you've ever been on last.fm you'll get a pretty good idea of how it works. But instead of you typing in a search term, iTunes scans your ID3 tags.
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Old Sep 30, 2008, 01:28 AM   #7
povman
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Originally Posted by gloss View Post
As long as your ID3 tags are all in line and the stuff is available on iTunes, you're good to go.
Actually, your music doesn't need to be on the iTunes Store. I have a whole lot of music that isn't available on ITMS but which still works with genius. Then again, I have music which IS on ITMS and which DOESN'T work with genius. Whatever
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Old Sep 30, 2008, 02:16 AM   #8
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Because it's an obscure song I just searched the iTunes Store for Altered Images 'I Could Be Happy' and didn't find it. It's from vinyl, but Genius generated a list from it anyway.

Older jazz works, but some newer stuff doesn't. These are mostly from CDs.
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Old Sep 30, 2008, 03:42 PM   #9
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Here you go

It takes information from your iTunes library and sends it anonymously to iTunes.

When you play one song, and select the genius it then makes a playlist of all the songs that you have that match that particular genre. Also sends you recommendations based on your iTunes library on songs to buy from the itunes store



Regards,

Mat
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Old Sep 30, 2008, 03:55 PM   #10
soberbrain
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You mean it doesn't work like this???
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