Saturday, February 06, 2010

Digital artifact

Many years ago, it seems to me now, I bought a (just barely) obsolete mp3 player via eBay. It held 32 megs. You could just barely get one album on it if you saved them at only 96 kbps or something like that. But I never really used it to listen to music. I would set my shortwave receiver on a timer so it would kick on late at night--while connected up to my computer to record the broadcast--and record Art Bell's "Coast to Coast." In the morning I would save the whole program at 16 kbps--since it was just talk it didn't really matter--and I could squeeze the whole thing on that mp3 player. Then I would listen to it while I was at work. That was the only phase of being a C2C listener I ever went through; it lasted about a year, maybe less.

Anyhow, my son came across that old mp3 player and figured out how to put a new battery in it. Of course the last old Art Bell program I had ever recorded was still burned in the flash memory. How weird. So I went snooping around and after a while I found both the cable (a USB cable that has a special connection on the end that goes into the player--not just a regular USB cable) and the software (WinXP doesn't automatically recognize the player as an extra device) and got it to work. I converted some files to 64 kbps so I could fit a whole album on it, hooked it up to a set of spare computer speakers, and now he's in his bedroom listening to The Dark Side of the Moon.

What a day this has been.

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