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The Compact disc was once at the forefront of technology. A wonderful new invention that was cited as being virtually indestructible and unlikely to be bettered.

That turned out not to be the case, and many of us have now moved on from buying and playing CDs. Many of us, but not all. As we’re about to find out.

Information Overload

To answer this week’s question please scroll down the page until you see the poll staring back at you. But first, we need to look at the results from last week, when we asked, “How Much Information Do You Share Online? How Much Information Do You Share Online? [Poll] How Much Information Do You Share Online? [Poll] Are you that person who is happy to share their lives with the rest of the world? Or that person who opts out of doing so whenever they can? Read More

Out of a total of 194 votes, 35.1% chose Only What Is Absolutely Necessary, 29.4% chose As Little As Humanly Possible, 26.3% chose What I Deem to Be Enough, 4.6% chose Why Do You Ask?!, 2.6% chose I Have Never Even Thought About It, and 2.1% chose Everything… Why Not?

These results suggest that our readers err on the side of caution when asked to provide personal information online. Only a tiny minority either reveal everything about themselves or have never even thought about this. Which is as it should be. Surely it pays to at least be aware of such issues.


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Comment of the Week

We received a few comments, including those from fcd76218 and pac. Comment of the Week goes to Peter Fitzsimmons, who earns our admiration and affection for this comment How Much Information Do You Share Online? [Poll] How Much Information Do You Share Online? [Poll] Are you that person who is happy to share their lives with the rest of the world? Or that person who opts out of doing so whenever they can? Read More :

With arguments about the right to privacy and the right of anonymity will always be made, the only way the internet can evolve into a more useful tool is by allowing to know more about who we are and what we like/dislike.

It’s a very fine line, but one that we have to chose to cross if we want our technology to make our day to day lives easier and more productive. What happens to our information is an understandable worry for many.

Targeted adverts are not a huge issue for me (I’d rather see adverts I might be interested in rather than tons of random rubbish), but the unknown buying and selling of personal information is very much of concern.

I have no problem with, say, Google knowing where I live and what my favourite TV show is as long as that information is used to tell me about traffic info so I don’t miss the next episode of “Zombies dancing on Ice have talent LIVE” but the thought of my data being used nefariously is a concern, although I do struggle to think of what anybody could do with my info that would be harmful other than spam emails or calls.

Either way, I only share information I assume is going to be public. If I don’t people knowing about my addiction to chocolate biscuits, I won’t join the Chocolate biscuits appreciation society, if I’d hate for anyone to find out my love for ’80’s elcto pop, I won’t publish a playlist of Blonde and Pet shop boys….

I share what I deem is appropriate to my life on line. So far, it seems to be working for me.

Until we can surpass the need for corporations to make more and more money beyond the needs of their customers/users we will never be able trust our information is kept safe and used with our best interests at heart.

We chose this comment because it offers a nice, common sense approach to the whole thing. While we need to stay in control of what information we’re giving up Managing Digital Information Overload - Is Technology The Cause & The Cure? [Opinion] Managing Digital Information Overload - Is Technology The Cause & The Cure? [Opinion] ‘Drinking from the firehose’ is a turn of phrase you might not be familiar with. But believe me, if you are reading this blog and many others like this, it’s exactly what you are doing... Read More as we live our lives online, giving up a certain amount can be helpful. For us as well as the companies making use of that data I Make $2000 A Year Selling My Personal Information, You Can Too I Make $2000 A Year Selling My Personal Information, You Can Too Don't be one of those suckers that sells their information for nothing! Read More .

Conclusive Compact Disc Discussions

The formats which we use to consume media change often and sometimes without much warning. One day, you’re using DVDs and are at the forefront of technology, and the next your collection is regarded as inferior because of the emergence of Blu-rays Blu-Ray Technology History and The DVD [Technology Explained] Blu-Ray Technology History and The DVD [Technology Explained] Read More .

While compact discs haven’t yet been usurped as the physical medium of choice for music (although some would argue that vinyl is actually better 4 Reasons Why Vinyl Is Better Than Digital 4 Reasons Why Vinyl Is Better Than Digital Greetings, peasants! What, still listening to MP3s? Look, as someone who knows more about music than you, I think it's my duty to tell you there's a better way. It's called vinyl. Read More ), physical media has been usurped by digital formats. A collection of bits rather than something you can actually hold in your hands.

With that in mind, we’re intrigued to know how many of our readers still own a CD player. And, crucially, whether they actively use it on a regular basis. We’re not here to judge, so you can be perfectly honest and we won’t question your technology geek credentials. No matter what.

Once you have voted in the poll above, please explain in the comments section below why you voted that way. If you still own and use a CD player, why do you still prefer the physical medium over its digital equivalent? If not, do you buy digital copies, stream music, or pirate everything?

The more information you can provide with your comment, the more accurate our conclusions can be based on the results. The best comment of the week will win our everlasting admiration and affection. At least until we all meet back here again this time next week with a new question.

Image Credits: Hugo via Flickr

  1. Ywing77
    September 27, 2016 at 9:07 pm

    I still own a CD player, and still use it. My CD collection has shrunk a little over the years, but I still have 800+ CD's in my collection. While listening to vinyl LP's is till my preferred medium, I still lean towards CD's vs digital downloads. Obviously they're of better sound quality than MP3's, and I still prefer to have a physical copy that I own.

  2. Ben-El
    November 24, 2015 at 7:15 am

    The only dedicated CD Player I have is the one in my car CD/radio, from time to time I use it to play CDs I burn. It also has an AUX input, which I alternately use, but the audio quality from the CD Player is way better, thus I more often than not opt for CDs in my car, unless I just want to stick to the radio! Which I do most often..

  3. Leah
    November 23, 2015 at 7:32 pm

    Yes, I own a CD player and every so often I buy CDs. Most of the time I buy digital downloads (major plus is they take up less room) but if I really love an artist or s/he's offering a signed copy or something like that I consider the CD instead.

    As for the CD player--well, I still own CDs so maybe one day I want to listen to them instead of the uploaded digital version. I think if you have the medium you need something to play it on. My dad still has some 8-tracks, but no 8-track player so what's the point? I have collected tons of CDs over the years. I still want to be able to play them portabley. I guess what I'm saying is I want to have the choice.

    Besides that, my CD has an AM/FM radio and I do use that from time to time (local sports games on the radio and such). It's a useful thing so why get rid of it?

  4. Colonel Angus
    November 23, 2015 at 6:35 pm

    I do still have a CD player. Three of them, actually. I have one in my vehicle, one in my stereo, and one in a portable radio that I keep around to use in the storm shelter. That said, I can't tell you when the last time was that I actually popped in a CD to listen to it. I'm not a stickler for having the highest quality audio and honestly can't tell a difference in the sound one you get to 256k. I ripped all my CDs to mp3 years ago and most of the music I buy these days is digital, although I do occasionally see a great CD from BTO or someone from that era that I grab out of the bargain bin. Most guys I know my age are more tradition, and still buy CDs, but I've always been more willing to migrate with the times.

  5. fcd76218
    November 23, 2015 at 5:15 pm

    Not only do I own and use a CD player but I also own/use a cassette player, a record player and even an 8 track player. Somehow never got around to getting an MP3 player.

    • Colonel Angus
      November 23, 2015 at 6:40 pm

      I still have a record player, too, and buy the occasional vinyl. There's something about that sound that takes me right back to childhood! I'm not as nostalgic about 8 tracks and cassettes, however. It was always irritating to have the 8 track click over right in the middle of a song, and most of my memories of cassette players center around my tapes being eaten and having to patch them together with scotch tape.

  6. Howard Roark
    November 23, 2015 at 2:15 pm

    I use it in my truck once or twice a week as It is a 2001 tacoma with cd and tapedeck. It doesn't have usb or bluetooth so If I want to listen to something other than radio is cd, cassette or dummy tape into my phones audio jack. I still buy cd's because It is frequently cheaper to purchase music that way than in digital format. $7 cd versus $0.99 a track digital. I have all my media streaming on plex in my house on my local network.

  7. Bob Brandt
    November 23, 2015 at 1:53 pm

    Yes. I own a CD player, in fact, several of them. I have a large opera collection on both CD and DVD. If I really like one on DVD I rip it and put the audio on CDs. I play my CDs in my car, in my office both on my computer and stand-alone units as a CD/DVD carousel player I have had for about 12 years and also a single DVD/CD player. I do not find it convenient or efficient to be constantly putting operas on USB sticks, my phone, or a table to play in the car.
    I buy operas on CD and also download complete operas and also arias albums and make CDs. They suit my needs well and I dread the day that I will not be able to buy music on CD or DVD and also CD-R and DVD-R+ blank discs. I do not use Blu-Ray and find them not cost effective for music or data.

  8. Hildegerd Haugen
    November 23, 2015 at 12:17 pm

    Yes I do, and I use it almost every day.

  9. Jon Glass
    November 23, 2015 at 9:27 am

    This is a bit embarrassing, but despite being a teenager when they came out, and being so fascinated with them that I spent inordinate amounts of time at our local Radio Shack and other hifi stores playing with them, I've never owned a CD player. I bought my first Mac with a CD-ROM drive in '94, and probably bought my first audio CD in 95. That was how I listened to CDs for years. And as soon as I could get software to rip them, I started, and iTunes has been my music player since its beginnings. I have always bought digital first, and CD if I must, and pirate if I must. However, the last song I bought was over a year ago, and I've been streaming exclusively for the past year via Google Play Music. I suppose if Google weren't cheaper where I live, I might go with Apple Music, but I don't know. I've uploaded my entire library to Google, and can listen to it all on my computer, phone and tablet, and even on someone else's computer via the web if ever that were deemed necessary. I probably haven't bought a CD in over a decade, and haven't listened to one directly since before that.

    In a bit of irony, my youngest (11 yrs old) found her siblings' audio tapes, and begged me to find some way for her to listen to them. I dug out a cassette deck from my stack, plugged in some powered speakers, and she's been listening to these old cassettes (stories, children's music). But she had no idea how tape cassettes work, abut them having two sides, and having to wait to rewind, or flipping the cassette, or auto-reverse, or the worst part--having to _wait_ at the beginning of the cassette, instead of hitting "Play" and having the sound start right away! So, CDs have never really played a huge role in my life-- analogcassette and vinyl, or digital on the computer. That's been my life.

  10. Marty Monroe
    November 23, 2015 at 8:57 am

    I still use a radio/CD/cassette almost every day, in addition to the CD player that is hooked up to my hi-fi. When I can, I purchase all my music on vinyl. When I can't get the vinyl, then it's a CD. I have never considered streaming music or buying digital downloads. Call me old fashioned by I like to own something physical.

    I also regularly listen to cassettes. I have many old radio comedies that I recorded in the 1960s and 70s, many of which are unavailable in any other format. Back then, I spent many an hour tracking programs down, swapping them with like minded people around the world. A few years ago, a friend gave me all of the surviving Hancock Half Hours as mp3s on CDs, which have all been cleaned up. I listened to one particularly rare episode which contains a number of brief pauses. These correspond exactly with the dropouts on my original cassette recording. So this has come home. Whenever I listen to these old comedies I always drag out the cassette. All that background noise adds to the authenticity of the listening experience.

  11. Ebbe Kristensen
    November 23, 2015 at 8:27 am

    I buy all my music on CDs which I then rip (using lossless compression of course) to my own server (no sharing!) and play via a Logitech Sqeezebox coupled to my amp. So I still listen to CD quality music but without the hassle of all the CD cases.
    My CD player is actually my Blu Ray player which gets occasional use. mostly when I bring home a new CD and can't wait to hear it :-)
    For portable music I have copied the music library to a micro SD card and put that in my phone.

  12. likefun butnot
    November 23, 2015 at 5:58 am

    I have an audiophile grade Oppo player in my living room that sees occasional use and a Playstation 3 that exists entirely to rip SACDs to .FLAC files as far as I'm concerned. I actually do buy A LOT of discs. Probably one per week.

    I like classical music, which is not well represented in digital sales and tragically mishandled by streaming services. If I want new releases, they're probably going to be on disc. I don't really want or need to listen to a disc, so my goal is to use every disc I buy exactly one time, to make a bit-perfect .FLAC copy.

    I do still play discs occasionally. Sometimes high-resolution formats like DVD-Audio discs include graphical data that isn't captured by when the disc is format shifted. It can be nice to see that stuff. There's also something to be said for real liner notes. Depending on the nature and quality of the recording, I've gotten everything up to 100-page booklets with the discs I've purchased. Reading an article on wikipedia or someone's Amazon review just doesn't carry the same personal significance.

  13. Earl Pilkington
    November 23, 2015 at 5:21 am

    I like many it seems still use their CD player in the car for the daily commute, but I am mainly listening to audio books rather than music - which dominate my phone/tablet.
    The CD player at home gets used only once a week on weekends.
    I do however stream music on my tablet and laptop while working (that's one or the other - not at the same time for that 'true' stereoscopic effect').
    And as far as MP3 or CD - I tend to play mp3 more than CD in the CD player as 1 disc is easier than continually having to swap them during the commute.

  14. m-p{3}
    November 23, 2015 at 4:19 am

    I do still have one in my car, and I often use it with burned mp3 CDs, but I also use the aux connector quite often as well.

    I also have an external Blu-Ray burner on my desktop, which I use to archive my purchased CDs into FLAC on my NAS (+ backup on another HDD).

  15. Reboots DaMachina
    November 23, 2015 at 4:12 am

    My cd player also plays mp3 discs and I use it everyday for audio books that I have put into mp3 format so as to get the whole book on one disc. I am a commuter with an hour drive each way.

    November 23, 2015 at 2:32 am

    I own a number of pieces of equipment that can play and record CDs. As far as music, I use them to rip my CDs to music files (generally MP3s). I prefer them to licensing digital copies for the same reason I buy physical copies of games - I want the control. If I want to switch my phone or PC OS, I don't have a problem. If I want loan one to a friend, I can accomplish it with a quick face to face. Screw you iTunes, these are mine, bwah-hah-hah.

  17. Howard Blair
    November 23, 2015 at 1:40 am

    I've got a CD player in one of my clock radios, a DVD or Blu-Ray player (or both) in each of my PCs (except for the laptop; I've got a 2nd HD bay, and am waiting on an external case for the original DVD-RW), and as I occasionally burn CDs, DVDs, and Blu-Rays (data discs), I don't see an end to the optical disc in sight. With extremely limited cellular data, and "data caps" on the horizon as ISPs keep getting greedier, there's no better way to back up than storage is being threatened by the aforementioned data caps, the NSA and their brethren wanting to look through everybody's files, and online data security looking riskier and riskier.

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