Why hasn’t anybody built FreePandora yet?

January 22, 2011

Anybody know anything about this? Care to take any guesses?


TPB has never really been a coding organization, so my bet is it's not
on some amazing new P2P service, but rather just a retooled version of
TPB website that is optimized for music content. In other words, the
basic foundation will still be a standard Torrent client.

I'm still amazed nobody has built a really good pirate music outfit — a
*true* Pandora whose box when opened can't ever be closed. Music as a
product only has two real features:

1) Play this song (or list of songs) right now
– Search MusicBrainz
– Find the most popular album containing the song
– Search TPB for the highest seeded version of that album
– Download it with libtorrent
– Fish out the song you actually wanted
– Play
2) Play songs around this theme until I tell you to stop
– Given an artist name
– Look for similar artists on MusicBrainz
– Assemble a big playlist
– Download albums one at a time like (1)
– Play a random mix of whatever subset is available
– Keep expanding that subset

It's the simplest possible product to conceive. All the hard problems
have already been solved: the content is readily available, the metadata
is already there. All the pieces are in place and are just waiting for
someone to assemble it into a user-friendly package. The only "work"
involved is:

1) Build a UI with three input elements:
. A search box
. A "Play exact" button
. A "Play like" button

2) When "Play exact" is pressed it goes out, downloads, and plays that
exact song, artist, album, etc. Furthermore, if it's already downloaded
it just plays from its cache.

3) When "Play like" is pressed, it instead goes and finds a range of
songs/artists/albums like it, and plays those instead.

The only challenge is dealing with mapping the fuzzy input from the user
into MusicBrainz, and then mapping its output into ThePirateBay, and
then figuring out which song downloaded is the one you want. But again,
that's a solved problem. I don't personally know the best solution, but
if you convert everything into soundex sequences and just match based on
how many common homophones it has, I bet you'd get pretty close.

Anybody on this list could build it. Seriously, it is a one-person job,
and there are probably dozens of people on the list with the time,
energy, and inclination to do it. Why study some esoteric P2P mesh
problem that odds are won't ever matter, when in the same (or less) time
you could build a world-shaking music service, single-handedly? You
could be *the guy* to take down the music industry.

Especially if you're in a non-US jurisdiction, this seems a no brainer.

Anyway, maybe ThePirateBay will do this now, but I doubt it. I expect
we'll need to wait for some nameless individual on the other side of the
world to step up. It really, truly, only takes one person to change the
world, forever.



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