I have received several emails, instant messages, and tweets from the last few months asking about the progress of bonsai, the state of WritheM Radio and where the music can be found these days. Lets get things sorted out!
The bonsai development blog has moved to its own dedicated site at http://blog.bonsai.fm/ and is very much alive. As we speak, Rean is working on finalizing some backend stuff and we will begin development on the front end very soon. Q2 2016 is still a very realistic goal.
WritheM Radio is still alive in the listener developed intermediate site called lifeboat (thank you immensely for your work swimmadude!). It's designed to be quick, dirty and get us from our sunken plug.dj cruise liner, to the shore of bonsaiFM. Once bonsaiFM goes live in the next quarter, we'll be able to migrate away from lifeboat too. Lifeboat doesn't have a huge listener base outside of North American office hours, but you can find it here. Regardless of time of day, we're still active in our chat room though! Join us, if you haven't already, on the WritheM Slack channel to keep in touch with us.
You can also listen to a curated playlist of YouTube videos by visiting our YouTube page and checking out our playlists. We have one for Mixes, the Offline rotation and our past BitMix's that we've published so far. I should really get on posting the rest of those... I like to click shuffle as soon as it loads up for a unique experience each time.
So as you can see, we're still very much alive! Until bonsaiFM is complete you just gotta look in a few places. Hope to see you in at least one of those!
Today we will look at the profile page. A page like this will exist for all artists, users and admins that sign up on bonsai. If you have a login username, you've got a user page. Let's start with the content on the left bar. A user can upload an avatar of their choice, set their display name, and location for everyone to see, as well as a small bio which will be limited in length. Connections will allow you to add as many links to social media sites as we support. You can see we're not just adding a few, so you likely wont have to worry about not finding your favourite one there. Then you may notice that the slug, or username, is displayed in the url, but the display name on the page is different. This means that a display name can be altered freely but a slug is permanent. If this person is not you, you can interact with this person via a follow and chat buttons, but that chat button is only enabled for people that follow you, just like Twitter. This should cut down on spam. If they really need to get a hold of you, they can wall post and ask for a follow first. You can see a lot of neat information on this page including three tabs in the middle. We are not sure if we want to add more tabs based on the type of account, like links to artist pages for artists, but for now what you see is what you'll get. Of course, once we have a stable live product, we'll look at adding more features as we go. On the right there will be a section to show the leafs users have earned and where they've earned them. Think of this display very similar to the karma breakdown view on reddit. Well, as you can see, lots of progress is being made and we're really excited about bonsai becoming something for all the radio communities out there to enjoy. Catch you next time.
Michael Writhe is the lead DJ and is around most weekdays, even if he is just altering the playlist. He is responsible for the Electro-swing, the EDM and the Glitch-hop you'll hear on the station.
Bill McDonald likes to administrate the station anonymously and sneaks in and out quietly. He does make appearances in the chat, but likes to remain as much behind the curtain as possible. He's responsible for most of the retro-electro and the dubstep you'll hear.
WritheM Radio originally started as an icecast broadcast driven by a custom django webapp called cannen. We played music for programmers or anyone that needed some background music. The idea of cannen was a community driven radio, where people would leaf (love) and burn (dislike) songs selected by other listeners. Any listener could upload a song to the service and queue it for play. You would earn leafs for good songs, and spend them on administrative functions like skipping songs. Unfortunately the listeners grew tired of having to queue music, or listen to other people's troll music selections.
Fortunately, Grooveshark released their Broadcasts functionality almost just as we were losing interest in constantly moderating the playlist queues. On May 9th 2013 we fully migrated to the superior platform and began broadcasting via Grooveshark. 1 week short of 2 years later we immortalized our title of longest running broadcaster on Grooveshark.
For most of 2015 WritheM Radio was hosted on plug.dj, until they closed their doors due to lack of funding. Much of the same functionality and programming that was perfected on Grooveshark had been carried over to plug.dj. From this we learned what we liked and some new opportunities that we could provide our listeners and fans.
Launching in Q2 of 2016 we are currently developing bonsaiFM. This new music service will provide our listeners with the best of our past while keeping true to our spirit. We provide our listeners a curated selection of music that our listeners can work to, while weeding out the troll music. We will provide a set up for low distraction, high energy, concentration inducing music to anyone who sticks around. Until bonsaiFM is complete, you can join us on our Youtube channel where we curate some offline playlists that you can enjoy on your own. If you want to chat with the community, swing by our active slack chat and interact with your fellow community there.
Our Frequently Asked Questions can be found at our FAQ Page.