Nuclear: Free Software Application of the Week - Week of 2017-10-09

Submitted by sudo moderator in freeAsInFreedom (edited )

Last week's thread (non-onion link).

This week's Free Software Application of the Week is Nuclear, an open-source clone of Spotify. Basically, Nuclear will search for songs on Youtube, Vimeo, Bandcamp, and Soundcloud, then play them.

Well, it works. Mostly. When I first loaded it, I was greeted by this screen. It looks sleek, but you can tell pretty quickly that it's still in very early alpha (and the dev admits to this). For example, just from the screenshot, you can see that the play button isn't quite centered in the circle. Furthermore, the "My Playlists" and "Settings" list items can't be clicked.

I decided to click on "Find Artists" because that one was clickable. The first person who came to mind was Althea Rene, a jazz musician who I listen to occasionally. I searched for her, and it displayed some of her popular tracks (none of which were clickable, sadly), similar artists, and some albums. I decided to try playing her album "Flute Talk". When I did, I was bombarded with error messages telling me that most of the songs couldn't be found. That's fair, not every song can be expected to be found on those four websites. It did find a few, and added them to the queue, but I had to press the play button again to actually make them start playing. It took a few moments to download the song, then played it just fine. But, it doesn't seem to have a buffering feature - once one song ends, it takes a few moments to download the next one in the list before it starts playing it.

So, you get the point. It does work, somewhat, but it's in very, very early alpha, so there's not that much to say. It still has lots of bugs and missing features, so it wouldn't be fair for me to criticize it as if it were a finished piece of software. As it is right now, it's hardly usable; the best you can do is queue up a bunch of albums from artists you want to listen to, and you'll get some of the songs from them. It's not great now, but is promising. Maybe in a year or two, it'll really be something.

And that's it for this week's Free Software Application of the Week. What should I review next week? Let me know in the voting thread (non-onion link). Thanks for reading, and I'll see you all next Monday!


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ziq wrote

Sounds like it has a ways to go before it's ready for prime time, but it's definitely something we needed a FOSS version of.


sudo moderator wrote

Also, guys, don't forget that you are allowed to re-sumbit applications that didn't get featured in previous voting threads. I know a lot of you posted them in the thread at one point, but didn't re-post them later, so feel free to.