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    ARIA Popular Classical Music

Well, sort of.  The headline refers to one of the several enhancements we have made over the last couple of weeks.  In total, we see three major points of progress :

 

1.  (The “twice as good” feature) –  We now have eight hours a day of live presentation, sort of.  David’s show from 7am – 11am US Central time is being given an “Encore” performance each evening between 7pm – 11pm, with the reasoning being that few people will hear the same times of the show in both morning and evening time slots.  Most people will hear parts of either or both, but with very little overlap, thereby giving the sense of more personal presentation.

This is of course a temporary stop-gap measure.  Our objective remains to ultimately have announcers presenting each hour of the day with no “encore” programming.  However, for now, doubling the time we have personally presented music, and now having one third of all seven days covered, feels like a great step forward.

 

2.  Sound quality – We’ve “rewired” the audio path between our music files and your loudspeaker with a much better audio path and sound quality.  Additionally, after some “real world” testing of our sound (ie in cars) we’ve tweaked some of the dynamic range settings so you’re not needing to constantly adjust the volume to prevent music that alternates between too-loud and too-quiet.

We continue to tweak settings here, but the improvements thus far are easy to hear and another tangible step forward.

 

3.  Meta data –  We now have a better presentation of “Title” and “Artist” information for each piece of music we play.  This is still far from perfect but is greatly improved, and we’ll continue to steadily work on this further, song by song, as time allows.  We also are working on a history of pieces recently played as well as telling you about the currently playing piece.

 

There are some additional minor improvements released that relate to how we schedule the sequence of pieces each hour.  We’ve added a few more songs to the schedule of songs that are regularly played, giving us more flexibility in how we mix songs together for best segues.  We’ve also identified a new consideration for how we schedule our songs that will help the “feeling” of the music still more once it is deployed.

We’re making progress on a better music player for the website, and starting to investigate apps for smart phones.  Meanwhile, we really love the Alexa feature – try it if you haven’t done so already.

We don’t yet feel ready for “prime time” and announcing the site/service to the world, but we’ve definitely transitioned from an “alpha” release status and are now somewhere in the “beta” category.  You can probably mention us to your friends and encourage them to give us a listen too and not be embarrassed by the recommendation!

As always, and inevitably, the biggest constraint to our continued development and its pace is funding.  We’ve done more, with less, than perhaps any other classical music service, anywhere.  But there’s lots more to still do, and if you feel it appropriate, you are of course absolutely encouraged to please consider supporting us.  Thank you.

Written by: David Rowell

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