iPod How does iPod shuffle songs?

Gary King

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 14, 2004
495
1
Does the iPod shuffle songs based on their star ratings, or does it do it completely randomly, without any regard to song ratings? Is there a way to shuffle that includes song ratings in it? Such as, lots of unrated songs at beginning, and sparsely put some high rated songs among those, and the lower rated has less of them in there :)
 

Mitthrawnuruodo

Moderator emeritus
Mar 10, 2004
13,604
146
Bergen, Norway
The only way (I can think of) is to make use Party Shuffle to make a random playlist with the option "Play higher rated songs more often" and then sync that playlist to the shuffle.
 

jMc

macrumors 6502
Nov 19, 2001
321
7
London N8, Late-16th Century
Gary King said:
Does the iPod shuffle songs based on their star ratings, or does it do it completely randomly, without any regard to song ratings? Is there a way to shuffle that includes song ratings in it? Such as, lots of unrated songs at beginning, and sparsely put some high rated songs among those, and the lower rated has less of them in there :)
Party Shuffle in iTunes has an option to 'Play higher rated songs more often'. You could create a playlist from a Party Shuffle list and listen to that on the iPod, but that's not a very automated solution...

jx
 

joecool85

macrumors 65816
Mar 9, 2005
1,355
1
Maine
michaelrjohnson said:
Correct. Which is why it's possible to hear the same song two or three times in a row.
Possible...but highly unlikely. I have the 512 and its full with 132 songs on it and I've never had it play the same song in a row. Every now and then I will get the same song within an hour or so though, but thats better than the radio! And even that is pretty rare.
 

Gary King

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 14, 2004
495
1
joecool85 said:
Possible...but highly unlikely. I have the 512 and its full with 132 songs on it and I've never had it play the same song in a row. Every now and then I will get the same song within an hour or so though, but thats better than the radio! And even that is pretty rare.
I have a 30 GB iPod, not an iPod Shuffle.
 

Gary King

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 14, 2004
495
1
jMc said:
Party Shuffle in iTunes has an option to 'Play higher rated songs more often'. You could create a playlist from a Party Shuffle list and listen to that on the iPod, but that's not a very automated solution...

jx
Yep, not a good solution for me since I won't be near computers when I'm on vacation :(
 

rainman::|:|

macrumors 603
Feb 2, 2002
5,438
2
iowa
Supposedly, shuffle works by re-ordering the songs into a random list, so it's not supposed to play the same song twice-- if you listened for __ weeks, you'd hear all your songs exactly once. That's what Steve Jobs says, anyway, when challenged about the true randomness of the Shuffle.

More info:
http://msnbc.msn.com/id/6854309/site/newsweek/
 

TDM21

macrumors 6502a
Jul 7, 2004
789
0
I thought that shuffle randomly played each song once. Did that change for the Shuffle?

And random truly isn't random. Most of the time there is an advanced algorithm what chooses songs. To a person the selection appears random, but a computer (or digital device I believe) is incapable of creating a truly random selection.

Party shuffle is a completely different story about repeating songs.
 

Applespider

macrumors G4
If you hit 'Shuffle Songs' on the iPod, it suppsedly creates a new random order for the Library whereby each song should play once if you left that playlist going (unlikely). The trouble is that any such random order means that you can end up with the same artist/album cropping up in a short space and the human mind, which doesn't like randomness, tries to create an order from it. Hence all the comments on blogs about how people's iPods were in a 'name random artist' mood today - it is weird though how it occasionally seems to read my mind! :eek:

What I think we mean when we say random would be an algorithm which wasn't truly random but which shuffled the songs and didn't allow tracks from the same album or artist to appear with 10 songs or so from another one.

The only other way I can think of creating something along the lines you want - aside from Party Shuffle - is combining multiple Smart Playlists. One with 'unrated songs' and one with 'top rated songs limited to a certain number' and then a combination one?
 

michaelrjohnson

macrumors 68020
Aug 9, 2000
2,174
1
53132
rainman::|:| said:
Supposedly, shuffle works by re-ordering the songs into a random list, so it's not supposed to play the same song twice-- if you listened for __ weeks, you'd hear all your songs exactly once. That's what Steve Jobs says, anyway, when challenged about the true randomness of the Shuffle.

More info:
http://msnbc.msn.com/id/6854309/site/newsweek/
I know that is how iTunes works. If you push the "Shuffle" button on a playlist, you can see it reorder into a shuffled version of that playlist. Thus ensuring that you won't hear the previous song until the playlist repeats in its entirety.

However, that is not my experience with my iPod. While it may be the same (though I don't know how it could be), after choosing "Shuffle Songs" on my 4G 20GB iPod, I have heard the same song twice in a row on several occasions.

Difficult to explain? Yes. But I guarantee you that it happens. (Happened on the ride to work today)
 

Gary King

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 14, 2004
495
1
I have 2,500+ songs. Haven't had same song yet :) Although probably won't for a while.