Rooms By The Hour

Jello happy reader,

In this installment of the Bitstream, I wanted to let you know about a couple of different items that have intruded into my consciousness of late, the first being a granular rental feature from Amazon, a slick new bulk content delivery method, and an AI cloud service to help artists and labels figure out if their “art” is dynamite or dud…According to the folks at Amazon Web Services (AWS), “Now you can run popular IBM products and pay by the hour with no need for licenses or long term upfront commitments. If you have an existing IBM license, you may also have the ability to run that license in Amazon EC2 and you simply pay our normal Amazon EC2 hourly prices for On-Demand or Reserved Instances. The hourly AMIs are now available at” This “IBM By The Hour” service offering is a first for me, as “ licenses or long term upfront commitments” are standard operating procedure. This allows big companies, the ones that can afford licenses for IBM’s enterprise–class products, to scale their IT resources in a far more granular way than in the past, saving time and dough. Over time, we’ll be seeing pay–by–the hour services from almost every software vendor on Earth, though it’ll take some time. As Terri Stone said today in a CreativePro piece on an update to Adobe’s InContext Editing , “…I can’t help thinking that Adobe is preparing itself for a future that doesn’t involve desktop software. I never thought it could happen in the creative space, but truth may be stranger than fiction.” Check back here in 2020…

Since I’m on the subject of Amazon, here’s two examples of leveraging Amazon’s cloud services…The first uses S3 cloud storage to create a digital asset distribution service that’s integrated a for-pay content distribution network with PayPal in an easy to use way. The only downside of Kordor Electronics’ RetailZip is that you have to download a lightweight application to manage the purchase and downloading of content.


Retail Zip’s Application with a Demo Download

Retail Zip’s Application with a Demo Download

The app is 5.6 MB…OK, not so lightweight but, the file you send to the customer is very tiny. Anyway, they offer a branded version and, unlike most of the other FTP replacements, an industrial strength version that supports very strong encryption and unlimited file sizes for delivering very bulky and valuable files like digital cinema content. The base fee for a “Business License” is US$9.99 per month. That includes 10 GB of storage, 10 GB of data transfer in and 10 GB out, plus importing 2000 files monthly. Incremental fees are charged if you exceed those limits. All in all, not a bad way to deliver files without the headache and expense of rolling your own.

Next up, Music Intelligence Solutions’ uPlaya, a cloud service that “incorporates unique artificial intelligence systems with interactive Web 2.0 applications to support Music Artists and Fans globally. The scalable system can analyze music and digital media in all languages and genres. (Their) Music Universe maps millions of songs based on perceptual similarity and Hit Song Science filters the songs based on the underlying potential of the music to be appreciated by listeners based on attributes such as quality of composition and several other sonic characteristics.” Al righty then! uPlaya uses six different Amazon cloud services to bring you what a senior VP of A&R for Island/Def Jam says is “…a fascinating tool, and smart companies will use this as ancillary information.” Indeed they will.

We don’t like uncertainty and this service is yet one more pothole on the road to totally algorithmically generated pop music. The New York Times wrote  that “…a music executive who is working with the technology said the program also identified the ‘gold content’ of a song. This is the part that is supposedly the most likable and can be sampled in television commercials, films and other songs.” So, what if you could provide a feedback loop between music generating software and Music Intelligence Solutions’ Hit Song Science™, the mojo behind the service? You could sculpt the output of the algorithmic composition process to create a hit! God save us all…

On that note, I’m outta here. In your free time, continue to geek!

One Response to “Rooms By The Hour”

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