Home Idiomag Pushes the Envelope With Big New Music API

Idiomag Pushes the Envelope With Big New Music API

Ambitious online music magazine Idiomag serves up synchronized songs, photos, videos and articles from and about artists it believes you’ll like, based on your past behavior. Today the company is opening up its store-room of dynamically aggregated content to 3rd party developers through a particularly exciting API (application programming interface). Beyond just media content, Idiomag is opening up access to user Attention Data through the APML (attention profile markup language) protocol and will soon offer bundles of topical content coordinated to suit any user’s interests.

We’re impressed by the offering and excited to see what will come of it.

Mashup and API guru John Musser called the first draft of the Idiomag API “interesting, smart” and unusually thoughtful about the ways it serves up different kinds of data. We hope that developers will take advantage of it and build some fabulous new mashups.

Idiomag has been pulling in user attention data since early this year. The idea is that users can enter their username from sites like Last.fm, Pandora, iLike, Strands or imeem and Idiomag grabs their public listening profile from those sites. Those past interests are used to recommend playlists of music and videos that a user would probably like. Idiomag then brings in semantically indexed articles from syndication partners about those artists, and photos from around the web from live concerts, etc. The coolest part is that the pages of these magazines are created dynamically so that the background color behind the text, for example, works well with whatever the images are on the page.

Content is changed day by day according to which artists the user has liked or disliked. It’s all pretty fascinating.

Now all of that content is available to be placed on 3rd party websites through API calls. Music social networks MOG and TheFilter are already using the API to offer up-to-date blog posts about artists on their profile pages.

Data is available in xml, json, rss, apml, xspf and foaf.

What’s Coming Next

Idiomag says it’s taking its semantic content discovery and social recommendation technologies into new verticals and onto new platforms next. Mobile and HTML interfaces will extend beyond the current Flash magazine format. Film and gaming content pipelines are already built and will soon be integrated along with music content. Gossip content is next. (Who does web content but leaves out gossip? Only people uninterested in monetization or overly concerned about the dignity of the human spirit.)

Idiomag has been around for several years but just two months ago built out a new semantic indexing technology that parses the full text of articles to determine their relevance. The company says it’s seeing 80% accuracy in non-music verticals and will reach parity soon.

The advertising on Idiomag is personalized along with the content and the company says it’s seeing 8 to 10% click through rates. That’s covering 40% of their very slow burn rate (they also have some seed funding) and they hope to soon start cutting some B2B deals.

The Mashups to Come

What will we see built with this new API? We’re excited to find out. We expect to see 3rd party sites in all kinds of verticals, but first in music, pulling in bundles of personalized multimedia content that they will then add further value to on their sites. It’s exciting to think about. Maybe you, dear reader, will be so inspired. Let us know what you build!

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