A look at the top mu­sic add-ons for your favourite browsers

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - DIGITAL LIFE - By Jimmy Ja­cob

Gone are the days when the browser was used only for brows­ing. With hordes of such soft­ware clam­ber­ing over each other to get the ne­ti­zen's at­ten­tion, it's only nat­u­ral that var­i­ous add- ons should start sprout­ing by the dozen to make brows­ing an inclusive ex­pe­ri­ence.

To­day, there are mul­ti­tudes of add- ons of var­i­ous kinds – es­pe­cially for browsers like Mozilla Fire­fox and Google Chrome – that deal with util­i­ties as di­verse as gam­ing, news and en­ter­tain­ment. Once you get the hang of th­ese util­i­ties, you will find lit­tle rea­son to ever exit your browser to change the playlist on your mu­sic player, or down­load that mp3 file.


Cre­at­ing a cus­tomised playlist can be quite a pain, and here's where Buddy FM comes into play. Buddy FM au­to­mat­i­cally cre­ates a per­son­alised ra­dio sta­tion out of your favourite mu­si­cians – ex­pand­ing your col­lec­tion of niche artistes by find­ing those sim­i­lar to the ones you like and scour­ing the In­ter­net for al­bum art.


Za­zoo takes you be­yond just lis­ten­ing to mu­sic, en­abling you to make some of your own. It even lets you turn YouTube into a karaoke ma­chine. Za­zoo adds scrolling lyrics to thou­sands of of­fi­cial mu­sic videos on the site, al­low­ing you to part­ner with Rob Hal­ford in let­ting out that ear-split­ting re­frain as he sings 'Painkiller'.


Want to try your hand at DJing? Party Cloud, which gives ac­cess to over 20 mil­lion house and trance tracks from Sound Cloud, al­lows you to mix mu­sic right from the con­ve­nience of your browser. Pro­vid­ing all the DJ tools you may need to remix mu­sic, it en­ables you to scratch, beat sync and mix tracks be­fore record­ing and shar­ing them.


Hate hav­ing to grope around for the mouse each time you want to pause a YouTube video? A browser add-on that acts as Kinect for your com­puter, Flut­ter uses your com­puter's built-in cam­era to iden­tify ges­tures aimed at play­ing, paus­ing or skip­ping songs and videos on web­sites such as YouTube, Pan­dora and Groove­shark.


With the Find That Band add-on in­stalled on your Fire­fox browser, all you have to do to re­search a band or artiste is se­lect the name and right-click to have tonnes of in­for­ma­tion from web­sites like Groove­shark at your dis­posal. So, who was the lead singer of Rain­bow? You would know if you got Find That Band.


This Fire­fox add-on en­ables you to down­load mp3 files di­rectly from on­line ra­dio sta­tion Groove­shark. Once in­stalled, it adds a down­load but­ton to Groove­shark's ‘Now Play­ing' sec­tion and a link to the pref­er­ences at the top of the page. How­ever, the de­vel­op­ers also men­tion that down­load­ing mu­sic from the ra­dio sta­tion is against its terms of use.


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