What is mp3?
"mp3" is an audio file compression format that maintains a high-quality sound while greatly reducing the file size. "mpeg1 layer 3" (mp3) was developed by the moving pictures expert group (mpeg) in an attempt to deliver high-quality audio files over the narrow bandwidth of the Internet. You can downsize audio data significantly and still maintain a near-CD quality.
A very large sound file can be
compressed to less than a tenth the original file size with no perceptual loss of quality.
For example, a 3-minute stereo audio file with the format of .aif, .wav, .au, or
.snd is 26 MB and takes a 56k modem over an hour to
download. The same file, compressed and saved as a typical ".mp3" would be 2MB
and take only 5 minutes to download.
After enough of the mp3 file is downloaded (say, 30%) the player may be started and the song may be listened to ("streamed") without waiting for the last part to arrive.
Because of its popularity and widespread usage, mp3 is becoming a standard file type; you don't need to hunt for a special program to translate it (e.g. Quicktime and Windows Media Player play mp3s).
Even a partially downloaded mp3 can be played, so broken downloads aren't always a tragedy...
Many logical humans would agree that
intensifying the general population's love of music is a very good thing.
However, in spite of the greatly increased resultant CD sales, the RIAA does not
appear to agree.
One minor downside, you might make Lars Ullrich mad if you copy a
Metallica song off the Internet...although these days you'd think he'd be
flattered that anyone still cares about their music!
A number of freeware and shareware mp3 editors are available on the Internet.
Appendix: Where to Find mp3 Stuff
Here is a list of mp3-related links:
"Shareware Music Machine" site: www.hitsquad.com/smm/ .
"Beethoven & Elvis mp3s": beetelvis_mp3s.htm
"Hotep California mp3s": hotep california
"Paul Alan Smith and Friends - free mp3 live tracks": Paul Alan Smith & Friends
"Link Master - free web promotion": Link Master
© 2000 - 2009 by Paul Alan Smith