Since the time I got my 160GB iPod classic I started scrobbling, sending all the songs played while on move to my last.fm profile. However since the beginning I had an issue once in while, or many times in the row, when I was syncing iPod with iTunes all my plays where missing. I tried various solutions, one part was avoiding iTunes and windows all over and scrobbling with a linux virtual machine, through the linux version of the last.fm player. Still it seems that the problem persisted.
After a while I discovered that the iPod actually kept play counts and last played dates, but some how iTunes or the last.fm player actually failed to recognize them and they where deleted during the sync process. The solution was accidentally found through the usage of MusicBee. Since the play counts are stored in the iPod there must be probably some inconsistency in the iPod DB that causes the issue. So a workaround is to play a track from the iPod music library with MusicBee, this seems to fix the issue, because afterwards the linux last.fm player gets every single played track in the list with the tracks to be scrobbled.
Today I decided to test MusicBee’s Auto-DJ feature. I have to admit that it seems rather interesting. The feature creates random playlists based on a seed track. You can choose the initial list size, the maintain X upcoming tracks feature will keep X non-listened tracks in the list. After you listen to some tracks and the remain tracks get lower than X, the feature will automatically add more tracks to the playlist to maintain the X.
You can choose as a source for the tracks your entire music library, or some specific playlist or even some folders. You can also apply some custom filters to restrict the choices. You also have the option to restrict the track genre to the the same as the seed track.
Now on the track selection you have a random option, and a choice of different/same artist with a slide bar that goes from different to same artist. If you are towards different it will choose more tracks from different artists, and if you go towards same it will choose more tracks for the same artist depending on the position of the slider. Another choice is the higher rated tracks preferred. Another really cool option is getting tracks from last.fm. With this option you can get tracks from artists rated by last.fm as more than a percentage (that you can change) similar. It also has two sub-options, the one is to restrict the selection to artists similar to the seed track artist only, and the other is to choose artists similar to the preceding track in the playlist (this one allows more drift to the playlist generated).
The feature also gives you the option to allow stream tracks from last.fm (this requires either a subscription or living in a country that the last.fm radio feature is free). You are allowed to choose the frequency of the last.fm track streaming. You also can choose either to stream tracks from artists similar to the current track in the playlist, either tracks recommended by Last.fm, or tracks belonging to specific tag/artist radio station etc.
I think it is a really nice feature, and I am gonna use it a lot from now on, because it gives another feeling to the music listening and the reason is that I rarely listen to random tracks, most of the times I listen to full albums.