Peter Gabriel’s The Filter welcomes Apple Genius

The man in charge of Peter Gabriel’s TheFilter music recommendation service is sanguine about Apple’s introduction of music recommendation services into iTunes (Genius).

David Maher Roberts, CEO of Peter Gabriel-funded recommendation engine, The Filter, told Distorted Loop: “We genuinely welcome what Apple are endeavouring to do with Genius – it brings into the mainstream what we’ve known for some time, namely that with too much choice, recommendation solutions are the future of search and discovery in the digital age.”

Roberts took pains to point out the advantages of The Filter recommendations, “While we believe, as you’d expect, that our blend of Bayesian algorithms and collaborative technology delivers better quality playlists and recommendations within music, we further differentiate ourselves by broadening out this technology beyond music.”

We’d have to agree that early testing of Apple’s service sees The Filter hold the advantage, though with 65 million iTunes users Apple’s likely to gather more accurate information pretty quickly. And Sun Labs researcher Paul Lamere observed Apple’s Genius struggles with more obscure tracks and music that isn’t on iTunes.

Gabriel’s people are already moving beyond simply music. “The Filter is truly different because the technology determines our tastes by making sense of our aggregated activity on The Filter, iTunes/WMP/WinAmp and other movie and music services (e.g. Last.fm and flixster),” Roberts continued.

“It uses this to filter music, movies, video and news feeds that match our tastes. In time, we expect The Filter to become the choice for personalised (and totally unbiased!) recommendations within the world of entertainment (music, movie, video and television content), while also acting as a brilliant portable tool of all your tastes and activity – something we genuinely believe to be the future, and something that really is ‘genius’,” he added.

Robert’s comments reflect similar refrains from Last.fm and Imeem, who both told the Listening Post last night that they broadly welcomed the Genius feature, while also stressing the advantages of their particular technologies.

Oh, in passing, here’s a July clip of Gabriel discussing the music industry.

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