Apparently Youtube launched a Pandora-esque service last week dubbed the Music Discovery Project with very little fanfare. Near as we can tell, it functions the same way as services like Last.fm and Pandora and operates based on some crazy mathematic algorithm we can't wrap our tiny minds around, "Find > Mix > Watch."
It's likely this has something to do with YouTube's introduction of Vevo last month, which is a strange system that allows for major labels to make money off of internet videos by utilizing a non-existent economy of watchers doing ... well, something that makes the labels money.
Anyway, MDP's playlist creation function is still a bit hackneyed together, as the screenshot above points out; the related artist field tends to reflect relation by name rather than musical style, in some cases.
However, we did build a few playlists with artists ranging from the Album Leaf to Iron Maiden, and the matching seems relatively solid, albeit a little heavy on the artist you originally type.
We imagine that like Apple's genius recommendation service this will grow and better itself magically as time goes on. We're not sure exactly how YouTube's brain will figure these things out, but we'd humbly recommend a "this shit blows get it off my playlist" button.
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This is an interesting tool for music-videophiles that have the patience to deal with YouTube's iffy quality and slow as hell playback. Adapted to a television, if nothing else, it might serve as a cool background filler for parties.