7 November 2008

Taking in Applications for the Position of the Next iTunes

I've written before about my love/hate relationship with iTunes. I keep my eye out for potential replacements, but the choices are very few.

Amarok 2 is one of the players that could have potential, but it's been developed on GNU/Linux. I read recently that it is possible to get it running on Mac OS X, so I thought I should maybe give it a go. Well, I did, and it didn't do me much good.

There's no official Mac installer yet. The only way to install an unstable version is with the KDE 4 Mac environment. Which was Problem #1. Installing KDE wasn't really difficult, but it meant I had to install a gigabyte's worth or more of packages, much of which I probably have very little use for. But I did it, and Amarok started up fine, albeit it took a moment to start. The UI looks interesting.

But that brings us to Problem #2. I haven't explored it much yet, but from the little I did, it seems this version still has too many problems for normal use. First of all, I couldn't resize the window. Which was annoying. More importantly, while playing a file on my hard drive appeared to work, making a library of my music didn't. This was actually noted on the KDE 4 Mac site, but, not familiar with Amarok's terminology, I wasn't sure what they meant. This makes its use very limited, and certainly means it's no competition for iTunes yet.

Until they release an official stable version for OS X, I'm buggered. There's a player called Songbird also available for OS X, which I maybe should try, but it looks like it's still somewhat a work in process and I'm not sure if it's as feature rich as Amarok.

In case anyone's wondering what my beef with iTunes is: it's proprietary software. As simple as that.

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