Quintensential Media Player (QMP)
This week's tool: QMP, the Quintessential Media Player
Don't blame me for the name -- it's not mine. Evidently the author has some attachment to cleverness around "Quin", perhaps because his name is "Paul Quinn" and the web/skin developer is "Mat Quinn".
Anyway, for many years Paul had been writing a pretty cool program and releasing it for free. It's not Open Source and it's not multi-platform. Windows only, thanks, but it's good and free.
I started using this back in the days when he was releasing "QCD" and I was playing CDs and I just wanted something that showed me my track info without me typing. Then I started the mp3 thing. Then I found QCD's media management plug-in for MP3s. Then Paul started making it fundamental to the program rather than a plug in. Maybe Microsoft's player does this stuff now -- I've been using QCD way too long to care.
These days we're talking about a media player which rips music from CDs (mp3 with an encoder plug in, Ogg Vorbis or whatever), talks to the Gracenote CDDB to snarf track info so you don't have to type that in, catalogs and tracks your music, works with MusicID to identify tracks that might not be properly identified, works with "Intellimix" to create mixes from your music selection based on a song you select (e.g. kinda a "more like this"), plays great 5.1 surround sound...
It also can play (and rip) Shoutcast streams and it does something with video (I don't use it as a video player) and many other things that I haven't explored. I use it for listening to good tunes while I'm hacking on something and for assembling the tracks I'm going to burn onto a CD.
Also, for those of you who like eye candy it does the skin thing and evidently quite prolifically.