Your Albums, Your Crates, Your Way

Crates – Arrange Your Collection Your Way

Crates is a different way of handling your collection in a media center.

The trouble with most music playing applications is that they are designed with no reference to what a real music collector feels when they interact with their collection. As a result, the media player experience has never remotely equaled the real-world experience. The records don’t feel as good to listen to.

Collector's Edition Record Crate
Collector’s Edition Record Crate

The concept of Crates changes that. Rather than being tied to arbitrary criteria like alphabet or genre to sort your music, Crates allow you to completely define what record goes where in which Crate – which of course you name and order as you like.

This makes your computer collection music feel far more personal.

The reality is that many collectors don’t arrange their album collections by alphabet but how they feel about each record and how records relate to each other. This is unique from collector to collector and not based such simplistic logic as genre or alphabet (although CE does that for you too)

It’s About Connections

Arrangement of records has a large impact on our ability to find the next record as they way the records are places in relation to one another has more layers of reasoning than a single axis like A-Z. These are called connections and many connections can exist between any single album and any other album in the collection.

For example, while I may not put The Doobie Brothers “Minute To Minute” next to Dragon “Body And The Beat” they have a sense of similarity. Maybe only for me because they were what I was listening to in the summer of ’85 & ’86 as I wrote school assignments. When I place either of those albums in a unique place I reinforce those connections so that when I think of one of those records I think of the other. That sets off a cascade of connections that in the real-world lets my eyes flick from place to place, crate to crate, as my brain finds the right connection for the next album to play.

The Crates concept allows you to Explore your collection at the usual Album level as well at the Crate level as well, with both being visual. That second layer of view can really help you mind to think about connections in a different way. This lets you be more open to thinking of something in another Crate instead of scrolling an emotionally flat, unconnected list of thumbnail.