Skip to Main Content
The modern audio compression techniques and increased bandwidth in the Internet has dramatically changed the music industry. Music in the 19th century was a service. In the 20th century music became an industrial product. In the 21st century music will be a service again. Illegal sharing services like KaZaA are widely spread. Legal online music services like iTunes from Apple or Napster 2 from Roxio already have been started successfully. Using these systems PC users have access to a huge music database. In contrast to this users of home HiFi systems still miss such online services. The authors give an impression of the future HiFi system they dream of. Like a modern PC the dreamed system, which is currently under development has Internet access and operates with a hard disk. Unlike a PC the HiFi system has a simple user interface. The connection of HiFi system to a special peer-to-peer network provides easy browsing through numerous music titles. The introduced automatic mode allows the user to listen to his favorite music with a one button interaction. Technologies like audio fingerprinting and melody transcription are necessary for future HiFi systems. Some other technologies like recommendation engines and light weighted digital rights management systems are currently under development. The core component of the HiFi system is the content manager. It tries to match the user profile with other existing profiles to send song requests to the connected peer-to-peer network automatically. The described system is closely related to a European research project called semantic HiFi, which is lead by the famous music/acoustic research institute IRCAM. The sharing system is the main contribution of Fraunhofer lDMTand 4FriendsOnly.com AG.