Muxtape has blown up — just a matter of time, I guess — but I hope this doesn't mean that they'll add a bunch of "features" to it. It's basically two things — the homepage where you pick a mix, and the player where you listen — and it doesn't need much more. Really! Please!
Part one of two: The home page. It's where the "navigation" is. There's no keyword search, no "categories." Just you, the name of each mix like a sticker on a cassette tape, and the sense of rooting around in a cryptic virtual shoebox, popping a mix in, listening for a little while, striking gold, or not, and moving on. It's a really lovely and evocative of the simpler, more mysterious times.
Part two of two: The "player." It's genius. No "friends" or "people who are also listening to this" or "messaging" or "you may also like." Just the songs, links to buy them, and an indication of which track is playing.For the record, I don't think it needs much else. Whatever happens, I really hope this stuff is NOT added:
- Search. Please, no search. Of course search would make it easier to find mixes that "match" your keywords, but who wants that? Well, I did, at first, but after I poked around I realized that I was having way more fun exploring, letting go of the way that I normally explore. We need more non-keyword-oriented ways of exploring! Seriously! It's way more fun to roll the dice than to look for what you think that you want, and it's somehow more appropriate to music
- Any kind of "profile-generating." The madness must be stopped somewhere, sometime. A way to connect with mix-makers would be nice, but no names, birthdays, pictures, blogs, or any of that.
- Any kind of more "predictable" homepage. Please. Just show the random stuff. Let people start here. It's scary and frustrating and annoying at first, but it becomes fun, magical. Perfect! Done!