While I'm at it, might as well post a couple of CNET News.com links that caught my eye:
- U2 vows iTunes release if album pirated
Irish rock band U2 might rush release its upcoming album as a legal download on Apple Computer's iTunes music store if unfinished material from a CD copy that went missing ends up pirated on the Internet, a source close to the band says.
While U2's label, Interscope Records, insisted it had no plans to change the intended November debut of the album, the source said an early iTunes release "is certainly one of the alternatives" should an unauthorized version appear on free file-sharing services.
U2's lead singer, Bono, was quoted in the Daily Telegraph this week as saying, "If it is on the Internet this week, we will release it immediately as a legal download on iTunes, and get hard copies into the shops by the end of the month."
Such a move, contemplated as a response to the presumed theft of a U2 compact disc in France last week, would be unprecedented, experts said.
- RealNetworks breaks Apple's hold on iPod
RealNetworks announced Monday that it has unlocked some of Apple Computer's most tightly held technology secrets, giving its music a way onto the popular iPod digital music player.
The announcement is part of a broader release of RealNetworks software, which will let songs sold from the company's online store play on a variety of portable devices, including the iPod and Microsoft-compatible rivals. RealNetworks has been selling songs from its digital song store since January, but the files could previously be played only on a few portable devices.
The new Harmony software, which RealNetworks said mimics the proprietary copy protection used in Apple's iTunes store, is sure to be controversial. Apple has previously refused to provide licenses to companies seeking iPod compatibility, and RealNetworks did not seek permission before releasing its own version of iPod-friendly software.