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If we're not in pain, we're not alive

You invest so much in it, don't you? It's what elevates you above the beasts of the field, it's what makes you special. Homo sapiens, you call yourself. Wise Man. Do you even know what it is, this consciousness you cite in your own exaltation? Do you even know what it's for?
Dr. Peter Watts is no stranger to MetaFilter. But look past his sardonic nuptials, heartbreaking eulogies, and agonizing run-ins with fascists (and fasciitis) and you'll find one of the most brilliant, compelling, and disquieting science fiction authors at work today. A marine biologist skilled at deep background research, his acclaimed 2006 novel Blindsight [full text] -- a cerebral "first contact" tale led by a diverse crew of bleeding-edge post-humans -- is diamond-hard and deeply horrifying, wringing profound existential dread from such abstruse concepts as the Chinese Room, the Philosophical Zombie, Chernoff faces, and the myriad quirks and blind spots that haunt the human mind. But Blindsight's last, shattering insight is not the end of the story -- along with crew/ship/"Firefall" notes, a blackly funny in-universe lecture on resurrecting sociopathic vampirism (PDF - prev.), and a rigorously-cited (and spoiler-laden) reference section, tomorrow will see the release of Dumbspeech State of Grace Echopraxia [website], the long-delayed "sidequel" depicting parallel events on Earth. Want more? Look inside for a guide to the rest of Watts' award-winning (and provocative) body of work. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Aug 25, 2014 - 70 comments

Sturgeon! Dick! Asimov! Heinlein! DeCamp! Bradbury! Sheckley! Pohl!

The very first major science fiction series for adults on radio was Mutual Broadcasting System's 2000 Plus (1950-1952). An anthology program, 2000 Plus used all new material rather than adapting published stories. Just one month after its premiere, NBC Radio began airing Dimension X (1950-1951), which dramatized the written work of such young writers as Ray Bradbury, Robert Heinlein, Isaac Asimov, and Kurt Vonnegut. In 1955, NBC relaunched Dimension X as X Minus One (1955-1958), drawing from stories that had been published in the two most popular science fiction magazines at the time: Astounding and Galaxy. 17 of 30 episodes of 2000 Plus, all 50 episodes of Dimension X, and all 125 episodes of X Minus One are available for free download as individual mp3s from the Internet Archive. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 12, 2013 - 23 comments

Skinable!

Winamp's woes: how the greatest MP3 player undid itself
posted by Artw on Jun 24, 2012 - 221 comments

Occupy Audio

Neil Young isn't happy about the current state of music consumption. A 30 minute panel discussion from D: Dive into Media. Whether you agree or disagree with him, it's hard to deny the man still cares.
posted by davebush on Feb 7, 2012 - 119 comments

Thought Audio

Thought Audio is a small, simple and likable free library of classic literature and philosophy MP3 audio downloads.
posted by nickyskye on Sep 27, 2010 - 21 comments

All The World's An MP3

The American Theatre Wing hosts MP3 interviews with actors, directors, playwrights and other artists. e.g. Stephen Sondheim and Anna Deavere Smith and F. Murray Abraham and Eric Bogosian and John Patrick Shanley and Edward Albee and Venessa Redgrave and Alan Ayckbourn and...
posted by grumblebee on Mar 23, 2010 - 8 comments

I may be mentally disabled as well but, if so, I am too far gone to realize.

Pink Terror by Mike Barzman. Shot on a Phantom High Speed Camera with Stephen Hawking commentary. Barz Art has stills (JPG) and audio (MP3) that can be downloaded. Phantom camera previously mentioned here: High Speed Slow Motion Video Gallery.
posted by stringbean on Mar 5, 2010 - 10 comments

Nebula Best Short Story Nominees 2008

StarshipSofa has podcasted all of the Nebula Best Short Story Nominees for 2008, following on from podcasting all but one of the 2008 BSFA short story nominees. Previous StarshipSofa.
posted by Artw on Apr 2, 2009 - 12 comments

A battle of perceived qualities

Sennheiser, a family-run company with an interesting history of searching for audiophile quality, has created what it boasts as "the new standard for audiophile headphones." But will it matter in the long run, when the next generation of listeners enjoys the "sizzle sound" associated with lower bitrate MP3s? (via) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 16, 2009 - 118 comments

Dude, I never made it to this screen before!

The niftiest thing at Coin Op World? The mp3 files of Classic Arcade Sounds. [more inside]
posted by Miko on Mar 13, 2009 - 27 comments

Revival Revival

The Folkways Collection is a downloadable, 24-part podcast series that "explores the remarkable collection of music, spoken word, and sound recordings that make up Folkways Records (now at the Smithsonian as Smithsonian Folkways Recordings)."
posted by Miko on Feb 16, 2009 - 27 comments

make your own

Postcard.fm Send audio postcards to your friends. Free. Upload any photo of yours or image off the web and any MP3 you choose in a single upload process, then enter your email address and that of the person to whom you wish to send the mix. Done— it’s simple. p.s. postcard does not sell, spam, or share the email addresses of senders or recipients. via
posted by nickyskye on Sep 21, 2008 - 10 comments

"Hello my Geeklings!"

GeeksOn "A show created by Geeks for Geeks, covering topics that Geeks like to talk about." This is one of my favorite podcasts out there, most topics they cover are talked about in a very smart manner with lots of philosophy and moral quandaries thrown in, and they have gone on to get some great interviews with various people in Geek culture including Christina Hendricks, who plays Saffron from Firefly, and its Producer, Lisa Lassek(Christina is the sister of one of the geeks), Orson Scott Card, George R.R. Martin, Forrest J Ackerman, Garrett Wang, and the man himself Joss Whedon! [more inside]
posted by Del Far on Mar 25, 2008 - 17 comments

Management cannot guarantee the sanity of the listener.

You desire to listen to "The Shadow Out of Time". You may also desire to listen to adaptations of The Shadow Over Innsmouth and The Colour Out of Space. Possibly you desire to listen to Neil Gaiman's Lovecraftian Sherlock Holmes pastiche A Study in Emerald, the text of which is available in a fetchingly formatted PDF. Or maybe it's all academic, and you'd rather just listen to some lectures about Howard Phillips Lovecraft.
posted by Pope Guilty on Jan 11, 2008 - 19 comments

The Best Music of 2007 According to

The best music of 2007 according to Stereogum, Pitchfork, All Music, NME, PopMatters, The A.V. Club, Rolling Stone, TIME, MTV, the Guardian, eMusic, Amazon, Spin Magazine, Q, Largehearted Boy, and more. Among the most frequently listed are Radiohead, Spoon, Arcade Fire, Of Montreal, Feist, and The National.
posted by Soup on Dec 18, 2007 - 68 comments

You'll put your eye out!

Jean Shepherd was one of the greatest storytellers ever to be heard on radio. The Jean Shepherd Project collects recordings of these historic broadcasts, converts them to mp3 files and makes them available to be revisited by his longtime fans and by those who wish to discover what great American storytelling is all about. [more inside]
posted by carsonb on Dec 11, 2007 - 26 comments

Your random audio links of the day.

Today's post of tenuously related audio brings you ten historic radio broadcasts, 529 eternal questions in popular music, and one mildly amusing black metal band prank call.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Aug 29, 2007 - 11 comments

Ah, that cunning wolf...

Lit2Go - tons of stories, tales and poems suitable for younger readers: HTML, PDF, and MP3s. From Baa, Baa, Black Sheep to Jane Eyre, Frankenstein, and Flatland.
posted by Wolfdog on Aug 9, 2007 - 6 comments

Number stations to Jonestown

10 (11) interesting/historical recordings. From List Universe. This site uses the term "Top ten" but as with anything when you talk in absolutes people get pretty ornery, so lets just say here are 11 very interesting sound files, from exorcism to castrato.
posted by edgeways on Jul 21, 2007 - 29 comments

Discover The Hang Drum

Is it a wok?! An UFO?! No, it's The Hang Drum! With its distinct serene sound, Hang, as it's also called ("Hand" in Swiss German), was created in 2000 in Switzerland by Felix Rohner and Sabina Schärer after years of research. It's a versatile instrument that can be customized to produce many different musical scales. Want one yourself? Unfortunately, only a few are custom-made each year by Rohner and Schärer. More Hang music? Listen to the Hang radio station. More: videos | music | known artists | a beautiful Hang used by musician Alan Tower
posted by Foci for Analysis on Apr 29, 2007 - 28 comments

More free audio books

More fodder for your mp3 player - audio books of Hesse, Kafka, Nietzsche, Plato, Tennyson, and quite a bit more from ThoughtAudio.
posted by Wolfdog on Apr 12, 2007 - 15 comments

Bruce Sterling's Talk at SXSW

Bruce Sterling's talk at SXSW is described on the landing page as a 'rant'. It isn't. What it is is a survey from 10,000 feet at what's happening in culture and technology and on the web, and I reckon it's worth spending the hour of your life it'll take to listen to it. I hope you agree. [mp3, 59 minutes]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken on Mar 19, 2007 - 52 comments

It will never replace a hardcover book - it makes a very poor doorstop.

Huck Finn, Heart of Darkness, A Tale of Two Cities, and others - free audio books. Text and audio on the web, or downloadable mp3s with embedded text.
posted by Wolfdog on Mar 4, 2007 - 15 comments

Loud Noises Hurt Ears!

"MP3 players should carry warnings that users risk damage to their hearing by having the volume too high, a deafness charity says." Also, for prescription glasses: "If you use these glasses to see things that are disturbing, you could become disturbed." Is this not the height of PC, Western stupidity?
posted by JPowers on Sep 5, 2006 - 74 comments

Audio versions of articles from The New Yorker, The Atlantic and more

Assistive Media is a non-profit organization dedicated to offering audio access to literary works for the blind. They have placed an extensive archive of downloadable magazine articles in mp3 format online, including selections from The New Yorker, Foreign Affairs, The Atlantic and American Heritage.
posted by huskerdont on Jun 11, 2006 - 13 comments

CBC Radio Available in Podcast Form

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) is pumping out a pile of podcasts that have covered the importance of offensive comics to Art Spiegelman, 600 bands over 54 shows, Captain America versus the American government, Amy Sedaris and geekdom, the journey of young immigrants, French philosopher Alain Finkielkraut and Harper's publisher John MacArthur discussing Europe and America perspectives since 9/11, the after life, sex with monkeys, what radio producers do, the french word "corps", Bonnie Fuller's "The Joys of Much Too Much: Go For the Big Life — The Great Career, The Perfect Guy, and Everything Else You've Ever Wanted (Even If You're Afraid You Don't Have What It Takes)", Veteran Washington reporter Helen Thomas and some other bits & bobs [Breakdown inside]
posted by boost ventilator on Jun 5, 2006 - 25 comments

Audiophile links

The audio toolbox for the audiophile:
CD ripper - Exact Audio Copy (Windows)
Media Player - Foobar2000 (Windows)
MP4 Encoder - Nero MP4 command-line encoder (Windows, Linux soon)
Audio techology forum - Hydrogenaudio [more inside]
posted by Sharcho on May 5, 2006 - 56 comments

The Hype Machine - audio blog aggregator

The Hype Machine tracks MP3 blogs so you don't have to.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Feb 24, 2006 - 24 comments

Supreme Court Oral Argument MP3s.

The Oyez Project has placed online mp3s for all of the arguments from the 2004 term of the United States Supreme Court. The 2004 terms spans all cases argued between October 4, 2004, and April 27, 2005, including United States v. Booker and United States v. FanFan, Roper v. Simmons , Raich v. Gonzales, Kelo v. City of New London, McCreary County v. ACLU, and Van Orden v. Perry. [slightly more inside]
posted by monju_bosatsu on Feb 7, 2006 - 25 comments

43 Folders Podcast: GTD takes a side-step toward leftism

Merlin Mann's 43 Folders podcast is hilarious.
posted by nthdegx on Oct 26, 2005 - 48 comments

Quick way to find audio / video files

Singing Fish - The search engine for audio and video.
posted by dobbs on Oct 13, 2005 - 13 comments

Dylan Thomas

Llareggub! Dylan Thomas reading Dylan Thomas and host of others (Shakespeare, Milton, Yeats, Auden, Hardy, and more). 11 volumes of mp3s on Salon, reached after watching a Salon premium ad. [via boingboing]
posted by carter on Oct 7, 2005 - 12 comments

WEFUNK so you don't have to

WeFunkRadio.com has 390 full shows available for download featuring the funk, underground hip-hop, and rare grooves that are so hard to find. BitTorrents are available for the two most recent shows and there's always the audio stream and podcasts coming at you fresh from Montréal's CKUT radio.
posted by furtive on Sep 16, 2005 - 16 comments

pirate car radio! finally!

Roadcasting is an idea bandied about for ages: create ad-hoc low power FM networks that let you share the mp3 music you're hearing in your car with those driving around you. It's basically a blueprint for shared pirate radio as you drive, surfing the dial for a variety of music from nearby motorists. They've got screenshots and source code and it looks just like the system imagined in Cory Doctorow's books. I can't wait to see where this project is headed. [via unmediated]
posted by mathowie on May 22, 2005 - 37 comments

Ma! I Miss your Apple Pie!

World War Two Songs. CBS World News audio from World War II. Also, vintage audio and songs from the World War I era.
posted by jasonspaceman on May 11, 2005 - 8 comments

crazy mp3 mixing!

This is a great tool to mix mp3s with, especially if you don't have $400-600 for final scratch pro. It was designed specifically for DJing live and works like a virtual turntable. Besides being free, it's far better than most of the other toy-ish mixing programs available. Having two soundcards makes things easier, but it can even run on a system with one soundcard (although you still need a real mixer). We've come a long way since this.
posted by EvilKenji on Feb 13, 2005 - 21 comments

steady broadcast

"Podcasting" - Another newer diversion, audio feeds from RSS.
posted by four panels on Nov 1, 2004 - 8 comments

Lend me Your Ears - BWAAHAHA!!

Something ear-y for Halloween: Oddio Overplay gives you Ghouls With Attitude 2-CD compilation by Otisfodder, plus (from Martinibomb and Coconut Monkeyrocket), the Munster Beat mp3 (click below the image to listen).
posted by taz on Oct 31, 2004 - 8 comments

Don't Bite the Hand That's Feeding You

Edison's New Media. American Memory (natch) offers this sprawling archive of audio files and filmic material. Uncovered while seeking an archive of piano roll recordings, unsuccessfully. Also noted: Fiddle Tunes of the Old Frontier and recordings from the American Variety Stage: Vaudeville and Popular Entertainment, 1870-1920.
posted by mwhybark on Sep 6, 2004 - 3 comments

Authors au naturel

Don Swaim has posted numerous unedited interviews recorded in the 1980's with famous authors, including Anthony Burgess (who has some troubles recalling "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"), Douglas Adams, William S. Burroughs, and many more... even Richard Nixon. (RealAudio)
posted by starkeffect on Jun 27, 2003 - 6 comments

Gee, Dad, you're creeping me out!

Christian sex ed recordings from the 1940's are delightful - a few choice tracks pulled in mp3 format. I expect to hear some of these lines sampled into techno tracks and pronto.
posted by jonson on May 23, 2003 - 18 comments

Compare your MP3-listening habits

Learn and compare your MP3 listening habits (via Waxy)
posted by oissubke on Feb 9, 2003 - 35 comments

Coyle and Sharpe

Coyle and Sharpe were two geniuses of street improv. Their man on the street interviews and bizarre senses of humour were unique and daring. Check out these great mp3s. (Great to see MeFi back!)
posted by dobbs on Jul 15, 2002 - 4 comments

FindSounds.com

FindSounds.com is your source for on-line sound effects. Their search engine has found and catalogued sounds in several formats. You can search by name, and their spectral analyzer can help you find sounds similar to your search results.
posted by ewagoner on Oct 15, 2001 - 17 comments

Dictionaraoke

Dictionaraoke brings you well enunciated music. The fun of karaoke meets the word power of the dictionary. [Via kottke.org]
posted by riffola on Aug 4, 2001 - 8 comments

Could this be the straw that breaks the Camels back.
posted by monkeyJuice on May 8, 2001 - 13 comments

I didn't even know that RCA had a mp3 player

I didn't even know that RCA had a mp3 player until I saw the site for it. It's interesting that it plays Real G2 files as well. Until the empeg car player gets cheaper, I might get one of these portables and run it through an auxillary port of my car stereo. It's a tad more expensive than the Rios though.
posted by mathowie on Nov 3, 1999 - 0 comments

Wow, a killer new site: mp3lit.com. Listen to books in mp3 format. Wouldn't it be great if this was Shoutcasted and a global wireless broadband network was in place so you could hear it in your car or walking around? Another cool thing would be if they hooked up with The Gutenburg Project and had audio versions of all those free texts.
posted by mathowie on Sep 21, 1999 - 0 comments

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