Songza staffers combed through Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs biography, making a note of each song, album, and artist mentioned therein as something Jobs listened to. So this isn’t really a streaming facsimile of Jobs’ entire iPod, but rather a series of educated guesses of varying accuracy. For example, when Jobs mentioned an album but not a song, Songza used Apple’s own iTunes charts to figure out which one to include.
Isaacson’s biography was based on solid research, so we’re inclined to think that it’s telling the truth when it says Jobs listened to a particular song. You can hear them all with a click of your mouse through your browser. Or, you can save the playlist to your own Songza playlist collection for accessing on mobile devices for which Songza has apps, including, of course, Apple’s own iOS.
We’ve been listening to this playlist’s mix of Simon & Garfunkel, Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, the Beatles, the Doors, Buffalo Springfield, and other boomer hits this afternoon. It’s definitely a bit eerie to listen to the music collection of someone who has passed away, and whom many of us felt we knew, even if we didn’t, really. But it’s fitting tribute, especially if you listen on an iPhone.
In addition to being interesting on its own and as a way of remembering Jobs, the experience points to another Untapped App for our next round of voting: the ability to create a playlist to be shared posthumously. Like sullen teenagers fantasizing about which song would play at our funerals, it might be fun (in an admittedly odd way) to put together a list of greatest personal hits so that friends and family can summon our musical taste from beyond the grave. Unlike humans, digits can last forever — especially when they’re shared.