REVIEW: "The Complete Idiot's Guide to MP3: Music on the Interne
- BKCIGMP3.RVW 20000621
"The Complete Idiot's Guide to MP3: Music on the Internet", Rod
Underhill/Nat Gertler, 2000, 0-7897-2036-1, U$19.99/C$29.95/UK#14.50
%A Rod Underhill
%A Nat Gertler
%C 201 W. 103rd Street, Indianapolis, IN 46290
%I Macmillan Computer Publishing (MCP)
%O U$19.99/C$29.95/UK#14.50 800-858-7674 http://www.mcp.com
%P 294 p. + CD-ROM
%T "The Complete Idiot's Guide to MP3: Music on the Internet"
Part one is an introduction to MP3. Chapter one starts slowly, but
does a creditable job of explaining compressed audio files (and a less
than perfect job of explaining lossy and lossless compression). A
rather terse history, and a decent recounting of the trip from the
Motion Picture Experts Group to MP3, is in chapter two.
Part two moves on to the getting and playing of MP3 files. Chapter
three provides you with basic instructions for the player programs and
demos on the CD-ROM. Various MP3 related Web sites, mostly MP#
archives, are described in chapter four. Portable MP3 players are
reviewed in chapter five.
Part three looks at making MP3s. Chapter six describes, and gives
pointers for, ripping, or copying tracks from CDs to files on the hard
drive. The material on digital recording, in chapter seven, is
surprisingly short on software recommendations, but has some good tips
for the recording process itself. Chapter eight is oddly difficult to
follow, but does explain how to compress song files with some of the
included demo software. The information on distributing your MP#s, in
chapter nine, is limited to the (admittedly free and fairly
convenient) service at MP3.com. The same is true for creating an MP3
CD, in chapter ten.
Part four deals with digital music and the law. Chapter eleven seems
oddly out of place with its discussion on setting up a commercial MP3
Web portal. While there are mentions of provisions in some American
legislation relative to home recording, most of chapter twelve
concentrates on the evils of large music corporations. Information on
copyright and permissions is in chapter thirteen. Chapter fourteen
promotes the idea that free MP3s on the net can work to the advantage
of writers and singers.
Appendix A has stats and opinions from several dozen bands that
contributed songs to the companion CD.
The authors have included a lot of humour in the book, although it
tends to be sarcastic comment. While amusing, these asides don't
really support or contribute to the material under discussion. Still,
the text, overall, provides not only a good introduction to the
technology and its use, but some solid and helpful advice.
copyright Robert M. Slade, 2000 BKCIGMP3.RVW 20000621
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