Tom Kerswill



Real audio Is a system for "streaming" sound files in real time from the Internet. To be able to listen to the songs like this you will need to download Real player from the Internet. There is a free player available (you don't have to pay anything to use it) - though it does take a bit of finding!

Mp3 files can be downloaded from the site. They will take a while to download. The advantage is that they stay on your computer - you can listen to the songs again and again without connecting to the Internet. The sound quality is very good. You can play mp3s using a variety of software, including Real player (see above), Windows Media player (comes with Windows PCs), and Apple Itunes (comes with newer Apple computers).

Ogg Vorbis Is another type of file, similar to mp3s. These files are higher quality, and smaller, than mp3s. The format is "open source" which means the technology is not owned by any big coorporations. So idealistically and ethically speaking, this is the file to go for. You may need special software to play them, though. Examples include Winamp and XMMS. Plugins for Windows Media Player and Apple Itunes are available. For more information see here.

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