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A team led by ex-Winamp-er Rob Lord today released a preview edition of Songbird, a desktop media player that offers an open source alternative to services like Apple’s iTunes and the Windows Media Player. Instead of connecting to one locked store full of DRMmed goods, it can connect to any and all available music (and video) on the internet.
Code brains behind the project include people who helped build Winamp, Muse, Yahoo’s “Y! Music Engine” media player, and developers from Mozilla Foundation. Initial release is for Windows only, with editions for other OSes to follow in the coming weeks.
Built on the same platform as Firefox, Songbird acts like a specialized web browser for music. It sees the online world through MP3-colored glasses — it looks at an archive of public domain sound files or a music store’s catalog, and displays available media for you.
I spoke with Rob Lord earlier today by phone about the preview release. Screenshots and interview after the jump.
Click screenshots for full-size.