Random ramblings of a mind damaged by years of disuse and abuse. Also a place to go to be bored to tears.
The Random Cartoon
Words to live by...
"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."
(The right to looseness has been officially given)
By the way... there's a crossword at the bottom of this page
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Rip but don't scratch
It's time for a rant. I have been ripping some music from a friend's CD music collection. I have run into two problems while doing this.
1. Homemade CD's often cannot be "populated" with valid information. They show up as "Track 1" and so on rather than identified by the title of the song. It's frustrating. If you rip from an original CD, the info is available and most music ripper software will find the information from the internet and insert it into the MP3 tag area. But with a homemade CD, that is not always the case unless the person ripped the original CD to MP3 format on his/her hard drive and then made the new CD from that.
2. People apparently poorly treat their CDs. I found this out when Faye couldn't get her DVD/CD drive to open and release the CD in it. Even using a straightened paper clip to manually open the drive. I had to shut her machine down in order for that to work. Even then I had to pry the CD drive' CD carrier out. This was a commercially made CD, one of 5 covering the Billboard top tens from 1957 through 1961.
The CD causing the problem had fingerprints (notably one BIG thumbprint) on the data area (shiny side) and some gummy substance on the non-reflective side. After cleaning the disc, it worked fine. But then I started checking play on the songs I had been ripping onto my hard drive. Playback on some were poor (jumping and skipping) and had to be re-ripped.
I was taught how to handle records by my father. He was meticulous in how they should be treated. He had a small collection of LP's, albums, and 78 RPM singles from the 40's. If you are old enough to recall records, you know they came in cardboard like covers and also had paper sleeves to protect them from damage. One end of the record cover was open, the record went into the paper sleeve and then into the cover. Most people I ran into later in life would use the sleeve as a liner, matching up its open end with the album cover's open end. My father did it differently. He would put the record in the sleeve, turn it so the sleeve opening was lined up with the top edge of the album cover and slide it in that way. He did this to prevent a record from accidentally sliding out while handling the album. Early training made that a habit for me also. Thus, I always knew when a roommate had been into my albums.
We have a couple of problems with CD discs. One is that some people do not realize that the shiny, reflective, side is the one that holds the music data. They put the CD shiny side down on desks and other other surfaces, greatly increasing the risk of scratches. The other is putting their fingers on that shiny surface, leaving behind oils (in the form of fingerprints) and anything that happens to be on their fingers. Cleaning that surface can be done with a soft cloth or even a paper towel if you are careful. I don't use alcohol as a cleaner, just my breath like I do eyeglass lenses. That seems sufficient for most fingerprint problems. One should only touch the edge, the rim of the disc, when picking it up.
Be kind to your CDs. Treat them with care and they will last a very long time.