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Thread: The shuffle function and depersonalisation

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    Default The shuffle function and depersonalisation

    Depersonalisation might be the wrong word.

    I am listening to Spotify as usual and it's on shuffle. It gives me the feeling of listening to radio in the past, of being played things you'd not listen to by yourself necessarily.

    But the difference is that at any moment I can intervene and skip a track or select something else.

    I dunno if there's much to mine here but I thought oh that's interesting that what makes it better is it's taken the personal decision out of this.

    Perhaps as a - false? - antidote to the feeling (cultivated by Spotify among others) of being perfectly marketed to, perfectly shepherded down a path of music, only clicking related items. Of course it IS false here because Spotify knows what I like (like a conscientious courtesan).

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    Now listening to Zapp "Funky Bounce". Never would have heard it. Would have given it half a minute.

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    I find skipping through the shuffle function contributes to the "gamification" of music somewhat. You can find yourself skipping through simply to see what comes next.

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    Yeah true! It's like Tinder. Only with slightly higher a chance of getting sex off the shuffle function.

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    I instantly regret this thread title

    It's like a parody of a dissensus thread title

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    Instead of celebrating the shuffle function

    I needed a thesis

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    I mean I don't want it to all be bad. I actually think the shuffle function is one of the best things to come out of MP3 world

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    Quote Originally Posted by Corpsey View Post
    Depersonalisation might be the wrong word.

    I am listening to Spotify as usual and it's on shuffle. It gives me the feeling of listening to radio in the past, of being played things you'd not listen to by yourself necessarily.

    But the difference is that at any moment I can intervene and skip a track or select something else.

    I dunno if there's much to mine here but I thought oh that's interesting that what makes it better is it's taken the personal decision out of this.

    Perhaps as a - false? - antidote to the feeling (cultivated by Spotify among others) of being perfectly marketed to, perfectly shepherded down a path of music, only clicking related items. Of course it IS false here because Spotify knows what I like (like a conscientious courtesan).

    im always baffled by this thing. I've never had an algorithm know what I like. the only difference for me is no presenter voices and as you say, i can skip what i really hate. that doesn't train it to be any better though...

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    I still have to make playlists in foobar. they are just far far less laborious as I don't have to sit in front of a tapedeck taping london turkish radio like i used to do for 6 hours a day when i was 4.

    Or you know on the c90, when you were 4 years old, you would not realise until you listened, that you were coming to the end of the tape, so you'd find another song to tape over it and then fade it out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thirdform View Post
    im always baffled by this thing. I've never had an algorithm know what I like. the only difference for me is no presenter voices and as you say, i can skip what i really hate. that doesn't train it to be any better though...
    You never found anything through the related vids on YouTube?

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    happy days.

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    Quote Originally Posted by version View Post
    You never found anything through the related vids on YouTube?

    no.

    At least, not anything I'd not consciously known about, maybe a 45 from nurcan opel that I'd only looked at discogs, but no great discoveries.

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    related: this is what makes freeform DJing so difficult. a good freeform DJ plays a variety of styles that have some sort of thread from one track to the next, maybe a sonic element, lyrical themes, maybe something to do with personnel who played on the tunes, some form of continuity that weaves its way through and makes the set swerve and go off in a new direction over the course of 5-10 songs. makes connections you never realized existed. can't program an algorithm to do that, and shuffle's random for the sake of random can be interesting but no replacement for a good DJ.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leo View Post
    related: this is what makes freeform DJing so difficult. a good freeform DJ plays a variety of styles that have some sort of thread from one track to the next, maybe a sonic element, lyrical themes, maybe something to do with personnel who played on the tunes, some form of continuity that weaves its way through and makes the set swerve and go off in a new direction over the course of 5-10 songs. makes connections you never realized existed. can't program an algorithm to do that, and shuffle's random for the sake of random can be interesting but no replacement for a good DJ.
    for the sake of argument though; perhaps a shuffle could come up with as good a mix, just by choosing from a selection that is based vaguely around your tastes. Interesting themes would occur organically, there might well be continuities between tracks that you only notice/appreciate now that they are juxtaposed? perhaps the same reasons you like these tracks, but you never spotted the threads before, swerving like a meat dj

    i guess the randomness factor kind of limits the extent that you're taken on a planned journey, but you might still perceive that - i wonder if we could do some blind tests? turing for djs

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    I must admit that the dehumanisation aspect appeals to me, (same as with the spine tinglers http://www.dissensus.com/showthread.php?t=14596 ) its a way of doing music that is antithetical to the whole elitist connoisseur approach & very undermining of it

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