Publishers of technology books, eBooks, and videos for creative people

Home > Articles > Digital Audio, Video > Audio

📄 Contents

  1. In the News
  2. Now Let's Go Get Some of These Things
  3. Napster
  • Print
  • + Share This
Like this article? We recommend

Like this article? We recommend

Now Let's Go Get Some of These Things

All you need for this step is a current Web browser, and you know us, we like Netscape, not because it's superfantastic, but rather because it's not Microsoft. And we say current because some of the older browsers aren't audio-savvy. Now we're going to shoot over to (see Figure 2).

Figure 2 This is's home page, the starting point of your initial foray into the world of MP3. But remember, isn't the only place for free legitimate MP3s on the Internet, not by a long shot.

We picked because it's a legitimate MP3 site, and it, in its short existence, has helped along thousands of independent artists. It also features a broad and varied selection, so if you don't dig the stuff we go after, you can go to your favorite genre and download something from that area. Many sites like have sprung up, and lots are devoted to a single genre, so go out and have a look when we're done here.

There it is, the home page. Today we're feeling pretty good, so we'd better temper that with some Shoegazer music. Yes, "Shoegazer" is a genre, although we didn't know that until just recently. That rubric didn't exist when we were out buying music by pigeonholed outfits that are now considered "Shoegazer" bands. To be honest, we're still not quite sure what defines Shoegazer: We know, though, that it's not obtrusive-it's ethereal, even, and dreamy-and a melancholy pang surfaces time to time. The pang tickles Bob but good-he's got that thing where he sees his somber soul reflected in art, and he can't help but be happy, like a baby in a mirror.

Since we've done this before, we know we'll find Shoegazer somewhere in the Brit Pop section in the Alternative area, unless the site underwent a reorganization while we were away. Aha, right where we left it.

Now we're faced with a whole bunch of tracks, arranged in order of popularity. Just so you know what you're getting into, gives you the option of playing the files before you download them. The way we generally do this is click the track title-this most often takes us to another page featuring the track we want to play and download, an artist biography, and other tracks by the artist. Scrolling through the list, we come across a track entitled "I Hate Paul Reiser" by a band called Poingly-odds are, this isn't Shoegazer, per se, as one might have to look up from his shoes to proclaim hatred for Paul Reiser, but judging from the title, it should delight us. We click the track to move into the bio area and begin playing the hi-fi version of "I Hate Paul Reiser," which does, in fact, delight us (see Figure 3).

Figure 3 Poingly's area on features all kinds of information, from their influences to downloadable tracks.

If you can't play the file or save it to disk here, there are quick remedies. On a PC, get into you browser's Preferences area, and in the Applications area, find the file extension you're looking for (in this case, MP3 or MPEG Audio). Check the box next to "Always ask before doing anything with this kind of file." That should give you the option, whenever you click to download an MP3, to open the MP3 file or save it to your hard disk. If you're on a Mac, it's a little easier: If you want to play the MP3, click it. If you want to download it, hold down Ctrl and click the MP3. Press OK in the window that pops up to save it. Backing out of Poingly's area into the list area, we come across Mira, a cool Shoegazer outfit that we know got signed to the cool Projekt label. We go in and grab all the band's stuff-same way we grabbed Poingly's-and notice that Mira has an album coming out here shortly, which is handy knowledge, as we'll want to go buy that when it hits the shelves. Happy for Mira, we take our leave from, comfortable in the knowledge that everything we've just done is not only completely legal but openly encouraged by the copyright holders themselves.

By the numbers

By default, the MP3s you acquire from sites such as will be encoded to 128 kbps, or kilobits per second. That means, practically speaking, that one second of those MP3s will occupy about 128 kilobits (not kilobytes, mind you) of hard disk space. By comparison, one second of CD audio occupies about 1400 kilobits. That's the ultimate beauty of MP3: the compression method MP3 utilizes-this removal of Bird's breath-retains CD quality sound at a really low "bitrate" (that is, the number of bits constituting one second of audio) and saves us all that space on our hard disks. MP3 will only take you so far though. You can compress CD audio all the way on down to 32 kbps with MP3, but below 128 kbps, some important digits-stuff you would hear, unlike Bird's breath- must be removed to get the bitrate that low. The result doesn't sound so good, or as good as 128 kbps anyway. Conversely, a bitrate larger than 128 kbps may be of slightly higher fidelity, but the size of the MP3 will increase too.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

Peachpit Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from Peachpit and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about Peachpit products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites; develop new products and services; conduct educational research; and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by Adobe Press. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive:

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020