Play a song, click the Genius button, and iTunes creates a playlist of other songs from your library that go great together.
This sounds like a cool idea, although I consider myself already pretty handy at creating smart playlists.
What really intrigued me was the new Genius Sidebar:
As you select songs in your library, the Genius sidebar displays songs from the iTunes Store that go great with it.
Lots of other people are, of course, getting paranoid about sharing their listening data with the Apple mothership, but I’m not. I’m thrilled if iTunes is going to start watching what I’m playing in order to recommend other stuff. Finding new music is one of my favorite things to do.
Unfortunately for me, it is a complete FAIL.
Here’s the problem I have with Apple’s new Genius Sidebar: Because I am fanatical about organization and tagging, my songs are all unable to be found. When I import a Paul Simon CD, I rename my tags so that the artist is Simon, Paul (or Beatles, The instead of The Beatles). I can’t understand what kind of person would search in P for Paul Simon instead of S, or under B for Bob Dylan instead of D. (Looking at other people’s libraries usually makes me lose my lunch.)
Apple’s site says, “The Genius sidebar won’t recommend songs already in your library,” but this is clearly not true. Look at this example! I promise you that I already own Kodachrome and 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover.
If Apple’s Genius Sidebar is not smart enough to know that what I have categorized as “Simon, Paul – You Can Call Me Al” is the same thing as what’s in the iTunes store as “Paul Simon – You Can Call Me Al” then I would say it’s not much of a genius.
Hopefully this is a Day One release bug and by this time tomorrow the Genius servers will be a smidge smarter.
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