Archive for category tuftshackathon

Passive-aggressive playlisting

On Friday evening at the Tufts hack I made a little Python script that makes playlists with an acrostic messages embedded in them. I enjoyed the hack so much that I spent a few hours turning it into a web app. This means that you don’t have to be a Pythonista to generate your own acrostic playlists.

The app, called Acrostic Playlist Maker, lets you select from a handful of genres and type in your ‘secret’ message.


When you hit the button it will generate a playlist where the first letter of each song in the playlist spells out the message.


You can listen to the music in the playlist by clicking on any song, and you can save the playlist back to Rdio.


Anyone who works in music tech has probably been called upon to ‘do the music’ at some social event. Now with the Acrostic Playlist Maker you can can make those playlists, while secretly expressing how you really feel.

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The Tufts Hackathon

Last weekend, Barbara Duckworth and Jennie Lamere teamed up at the Tufts Hackathon to build a music hack. Here’s Barbara’s report from the hackathon:


Jen Lamere and Barbara Duckworth presenting:

Cinemusic – created at Tufts Hackathon

For our second hack day, Jen Lamere and I were wildly successful. Going into the Tufts hackathon, we knew that we wanted to create a hack involving music, but we didn’t want the hassle of having to make hardware to go along with it, like in our last hack, HighFive Hero.

CineMusicSmallAs we were walking to the building in which the hackathon was held, we decided on making a program that would suggest a movie based on its soundtrack. The user would tell us their favorite artists, and we would find a movie soundtrack that contained similar music, the idea being that if you like the soundtrack, the movie would also be of your tastes. So, lets say you have an unnatural love for Miley Cyrus. Type that in, and our music-to-movie program would tell you to watch Another Cinderella Story, with Selena Gomez on the soundtrack. With Selena also being a Disney Channel star and of similar singing caliber, the suggestion makes sense.

Barbie and Jen hacking away (photo by  Ming Chow)

Barbie and Jen hacking away (photo by Ming Chow)

We used The Echo Nest API to search for similar artists, and with the help of Paul Lamere, utilized Spotify’s fantastic tagging system to compile a huge data file of artists and soundtracks, which we then sorted through. We also added a cool last-minute feature using the Spotify API, which would start playing the soundtrack right as the movie suggestion was given. Jen and I hope to iron out any bugs that are currently in our program, and turn it into a web app.



Our (if I do say so myself) pretty awesome hack, combined with our amateur status, won us the rookie award at Tufts Hackathon! Jen and I will both be proudly wearing our new “GitHub swag” and we will hopefully find a way to put the AWS credits to good use. Thank you to everyone at Tufts, for organizing such a fantastic event!


Barbara and Jennie reviewing their swag options


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