links for 2010-10-07

  • A couple of days ago I encountered this article: How Shazam Works

    This got me interested in how a program like Shazam works… And more importantly, how hard is it to program something similar in Java?

  • here is a cool service called Shazam, which take a short sample of music, and identifies the song.  There are couple ways to use it, but one of the more convenient is to install their free app onto an iPhone.  Just hit the “tag now” button, hold the phone’s mic up to a speaker, and it will usually identify the song and provide artist information, as well as a link to purchase the album.

    What is so remarkable about the service, is that it works on very obscure songs and will do so even with extraneous background noise.  I’ve gotten it to work sitting down in a crowded coffee shop and pizzeria.

    So I was curious how it worked, and luckily there is a paper written by one of the developers explaining just that.  Of course they leave out some of the details, but the basic idea is exactly what you would expect:  it relies on fingerprinting music based on the spectrogram.

    (tags: maths music)
  • Modernizr is a small and simple JavaScript library that helps you take advantage of emerging web technologies (CSS3, HTML 5) while still maintaining a fine level of control over older browsers that may not yet support these new technologies.

    Modernizr uses feature detection to test the current browser against upcoming features like rgba(), border-radius, CSS Transitions and many more. These are currently being implemented across browsers and with Modernizr you can start using them right now, with an easy way to control the fallbacks for browsers that don’t yet support them.

    Additionally, Modernizr creates a self-titled global JavaScript object which contains properties for each feature; if a browser supports it, the property will evaluate true and if not, it will be false.

  • sing the Bespin Bookmarklet, you can replace any textarea you encounter with a Bespin editor – making editing much more pleasant. Here's how to use it:

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