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Winamp 5, Wasabi, and the Future

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I’ve been a Winamp fan for quite some time now. I’ve been using it since the days of 2.1-ish, and it’s been near impossible to get me to switch to another full-time media player. Winamp 5 pretty much seals the deal with me.

The naming convention for Winamp 5 has already been discussed, and I’ve made available my favorite Winamp skins.

Although I wasn’t much of a fan of Winamp 3 in terms of using it (it was very, very slow), the thing that I did think was fantastic was Wasabi. Even though it was slow, it was a brilliant piece of work that had much potential to be something really useful.

According to C|Net, Brennan Underwood (the head honcho behind Wasabi) has been laid-off by AOL. Apparently, it seems as though AOL is making more and more mistakes with the technology that it owns, which leads me to believe that AOL won’t be around for much longer.

The Wasabi Development Board over at the Winamp Forums has a posting about making Wasabi an open-source project. The WasabiDev website says pretty much the same thing. I know that Winamp 5 has compatibility with the Wasabi API, since the whole point of Winamp 5 was to “Wasabify Winamp 2”. So far, so good.

Although I’m kinda bummed that Wasabi Development at Nullsoft is being abandoned (although I’m sure that other Nullsofters will contribute time and code to the new project), I’m sure that the newly dubbed “wasabi.player” (based on Winamp 3) will do very well once the API matures. Winamp 5 support for Wasabi will probably be limited to skinning and components — the same as it is now. I’d be suprised if AOL continued to pay their Nullsoft employees to continue work on their own Wasabi, separate from the open-source Wasabi.

All of that aside, I’m loving the new Winamp 5 Final release. It’s fast, supports cool skins, and even plays my excessively large video files like a champ.

Ryan Parman

is an engineering manager with over 20 years of experience across software development, site reliability engineering, and security. He is the creator of SimplePie and AWS SDK for PHP, patented multifactor-authentication-as-a-service at WePay, defined much of the CI/CD and SRE disciplines at McGraw-Hill Education, and came up with the idea of “serverless, event-driven, responsive functions in the cloud” while at Amazon Web Services in 2010. Ryan's aptly-named blog, , is where he writes about ideas longer than . Ambivert. Curious. Not a coffee drinker.