Computing Music - Programming Playlist

March 15, 2020 by Mike Halvorsen — 3 min read

Music for Mike’s Productivity

I am a very music oriented person. I had one of the first portable and commercially available MP3 players in 7th grade - the Diamond Rio-PMP300. I saved money from cutting grass in my neighborhood and building websites to buy it. It was $200 - a lot of money at the time. But it was revolutionary and was something I really thought I needed at the time.

Diamond Rio PMP300 - the first commercial MP3 player

Back in 1998, CD players were still the technology everyone had. Cutting grass, riding bikes, and walking around made portable CD players a nightmare. The music constantly skipped whenever you moved - negating the portable nature of “portable” CD players. The only thing that made them portable at the time was their size. Some of the portable CD players had skip protection, essentially a buffer that read ahead. But putting those portable CD players in my pocket was a nightmare and nearly impossible, especially when I was cutting grass for money. There wasn’t enough buffer for 12 year old Mike cutting grass like a madman or riding his bike to a friends house. The only flaw with the Diamond Rio MP3 player was the battery door on the bottom. It usually popped open once a day and stopped playing.

Music made work more tolerable and helped me drown out the noise from the gas engine. When the Diamond Rio MP3 player came out, I had to get it.

Not only was it better with an active lifestyle, it was way more efficient than having to take the MP3s and converting them to WAV to burn CDs on a 1X CD burner. No more CDs to carry around in a huge book and no more worrying about scratched discs. I just had to transfer the files onto the MP3 player and go. A new playlist every day, without stacks of CDs.

The Diamond Rio had a 32MB flash memory without any moving parts, which meant you could do anything a 12 year old would want to do without worrying about the music skipping. The 32MB memory was enough space to hold 10 songs or less, depending on the quality of your MP3’s. I found that 112kbps was decent quality for what I needed. I could fit more than 10 songs, as long as they weren’t long tracks.

I vividly remember sitting in class in the 7th grade wearing a long-sleeve shirt with the earbud headphone passed through the sleeve and leaning into my hand to listen to music. I liked to do this when I was writing essays and working independently.

Music has always been a part of my life and to this day, I am almost always listening to music while I work.

Playlist for Computer Work

I usually put a new playlist together every year with all the music I like. This year I put an excellent one together that keeps me productive. It’s over 10 hours long now. I hope you enjoy and find both productivity and inspiration while listening to this playlist:

Here is the link for the playlist:

Computing Music - Programming Playlist