Carolinian – Features
Issue: 9/27/01

The New Napster
By Erin Bain

Many new college students in the last several years have come to school and thanked the Technology Gods for allowing them speedy access to the internet through LAN connections and computers just about everywhere they turn. These students were also often chomping at the bit to download free music in the form of MP3 files to their personal computers. Who wouldn’t want to get 3 songs for free as opposed to buying a CD with 16 songs (only 3 of which you like) for $20?

With this excitement, many of us from past years were afforded access to a magical program called Napster that allowed us to download, share, listen, and get rid of millions of songs as we pleased. However, because of many developments and bands that did not approve of free music sharing, Napster is no longer nearly as usable or free as it used to be. So with this being said, today I give you By downloading a satellite program, searching for artists or songs that you like and adding them to your list of “requested songs,” we as poor college students are once again able to combat consumerism and get stuff for free.

The basic principle is that people can register with the web site and download a satellite program that keeps them constantly connected with a searchable database of millions of people’s MP3 files. It is the same kind of idea as Napster, but it works differently. Instead of specifying connection speeds or searching for a song and getting hundreds of responses that you don’t want, you can search more specifically for a particular artist or song without worrying about the possibility that you will get an incomplete version or something completely different from what you actually wanted.

While it sometimes takes longer to download songs because of slower connections, the quality is volumes better than those that were often listed with Napster. Audiogalaxy allows users to search by title of song, album, artist, or simply by genre for millions of files. Audiogalaxy also provides a valuable service for the absent-minded that will allow you to see what files you already have on your hard drive when searching for new files. For example, if you already have “Song A” by “Artist X” in your shared directory of files, it will show an icon beside that file name in the search to let you know you should not download it a second time.

With genres ranging from electronica to jazz to hip hop and just about every artist under the sun listed, is the new way for people to download freebies and enjoy music right on their home computer. is a great tool for the thrifty music lover and a downright good site to be aware of. I highly recommend checking it out if you haven’t yet and telling your friends about it if you have.