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Last.fm

The Web 2.0 moniker is something that's being banded around a little too freely at the moment, but that's not to say there's not a few good offerings out there. My favourite of the moment is probably Last.fm. If you've heard me go on about Pandora before, then you'll know where I'm coming from, as this could be placed within the same category.

The principle is fairly simple - you download a little piece of client software, which runs like an internet radio station. You give it the name of something you like as a starting point and it quaintly "scrobbles" around and tries to suggest things that you might also like. You can't ever specifically name a track you want to hear (this probably has something to do with playing rights and royalties) - well, unless you want to pay a little fee, the paltry sum of £1.50 per month.

If you hate tracks, you can ban them from being played again. If you love them, add them to your favourites list - it's simple.It's a good way of identifying what you love and hate. On top of that, though, you can keyword tracks. For example, you might think a track is particularly good to use when running or driving and can keyword it as such - a bit like the way del.icio.us works. This means that you can build up a list of good running music, or driving music - and then recommend those key-worded playlists to the rest of the world.

The site is free, easy to use and has introduced me to some new music, which is a good thing, 'coz I listen to loads of the stuff. You don't really have much to lose.
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