Jon’s sound clips are now available.
Creating these music excerpts is really an art. How long should they be? How do you give enough to entice the listener but not give away the mystery? What if you choose the wrong 30 secs and turn off the listener. Maybe for that reason 30 secs is not enough. That’s what we went on. Amazon does 1 minute clips and so we decided to follow suit. Another question is who should create the clips? Should it be the artist? Will he or she be objective enough? In this case Jon created the excerpts. Yet another issue was what format to use. We decided to go with mp3 since that would have cross platform support. Finally we decided to go with FM quality sample rate. This cut down the excerpts from 2mb + to about 700K. FM quality sounds just fine for review purposes and of course downloads much quicker.
From an admin perspective I re-used some CGI functionality that our ISP provides and integrated that to the site. This means that Jon has an admin screen that allows him to enter his excerpts and the Music page is now equipped with a link that goes to a downloads record page. It looks pretty good and its was certainly cost effective. The final thought I had for this was whether it would be worth it to incorporate streaming of the clips. The main reason is that this should be helpful to those potential listeners that do not have broadband access.
The next step is to burn the art work onto 2 CDs and send those to the copyright office which should happen tomorrow or the next day.