iTunes 8 - How does "Genius" actually work?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by PeteB, Sep 11, 2008.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    Jan 14, 2008
    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)...?
  2. macrumors 6502

    Apr 12, 2007
    It works by comparing what you are listening to, to a huge database of music that is linked to songs in similar genre/style.
  3. macrumors 68000


    Jul 25, 2004
    Gloucester, UK
    As I understand it, yes.

    Yes. As more libraries are added, the predictions should improve.

    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.
  4. macrumors member


    Apr 29, 2008
    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

    Attached Files:

  5. macrumors 601


    May 9, 2006
    As long as your ID3 tags are all in line and the stuff is available on iTunes, you're good to go.
  6. macrumors regular

    Nov 30, 2007
    If you've ever been on 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.
  7. macrumors member

    Jul 4, 2006
    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 ;)
  8. macrumors 65816


    Jan 6, 2008
    Windsor, ON, Canada
    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.
  9. macrumors 6502a


    Sep 30, 2008
    England, United Kingdom
    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


  10. macrumors 65816


    May 9, 2008

Share This Page