MP3 “mix tape” site Muxtape has been my preferred source of new music for the last few weeks now, in large part because the simple interface is such a joy to use. Now, internet and organic root-beer lover Colin Sproule has come up with a great way for Mac users to get an iTunes-style Coverflow preview of playlists on the site.
The improvement in user experience for this already fantastic app is remarkable. Check out the how-to video embedded below. It’s also a great example of several brand new apps all put to use together.
Sproule demonstrates how he used the deceptively “site specific browser” Fluid to make what’s almost a Rich Internet App on the desktop, dedicated here to Muxtape, and then pull in the CSS of Muxtape previews and turn on Coverflow. The end result is super hot. Notice also the great screencast production technology, Sproule uses the popular new screencasting tool Screenflow. Here’s a screenshot , below that is the video about how you can put this on your Mac in minutes.
You can also skip the Fluid part and just download the completed “app” from Tom Martin’s blog. You’ll still have to make the CSS edit yourself, though.
If you’ve wondered why you’d use Fluid to make a standalone browser for a single web site, this is a great example. Following Sproule’s instructions was remarkably easy, it took me less than five minutes and added a wrinkle to my internet experience that I expect to use regularly.
I struggled for awhile until I realized that my Mac needed a software update and that solved the problem of previews not appearing right away. For some reason still, a couple of the pages aren’t fully previewing - but this is a much better experience than the standard Muxtape black box.
This really inspires me to try some more things out with Fluid, including perhaps a standalone FriendFeed browser - since the newly released AlertThingy really aint doing it for me. Update: While walking my dog and listening to Newsgang talk about politics and Twitter, I realized that to be honest it was through AlertThingy that I saw a Growl popup about Engtech Digging Sproule’s post about this. Sometimes I drown in a soup of input and forget exactly where I first find things. I apologize for that.
The Coverflow feature combined with Muxtape is really great though.