The Sounds of Stanford

January/February 2006

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Missed the Dalai Lama speaking on campus? Didn’t catch Big Game? A collaboration between Apple and the University, launched in October, makes it possible to listen to events like these on your computer.

Stanford on iTunes, which currently boasts nearly 400 audio programs that range from sports broadcasts to faculty lectures, allows users to hear and download Stanford-related audio content free of charge. Senior director of alumni relations David Vargas, ’77, says the University saw Apple’s overture as an opportunity to keep alumni current. “Part of our goal is to reach out to all Stanford alumni,” he says, “and this is a technological solution that engages people, whether they listen to ‘All Right Now’ or a lecture on Hurricane Katrina.” Most files are open to the public, though some academic content is available only to students.

“Students only” is definitely the case with the new Yahoo! Music Unlimited pilot. The 80 percent of students who use Windows can now listen to more than a million songs, download music to compatible players, and buy songs at a discount thanks to the program, which is sponsored by an anonymous donor and provides currently enrolled students with free Yahoo! Music subscriptions for the ’05-’06 academic year. But users beware—when September rolls around, students must remember to cancel their subscriptions, or they’ll have to pay for their music like everybody else.

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