Another year passes and we reach another milestone in that Winamp can finally have a drink to celebrate it’s birthday in it’s country of origin (the U.S.) as it’s now 21 years old (as of 21st April). Having peronsally used Winamp since 1999, it’s both bewildering and amazing to still be able to use it after all that time from where it first started (as covered last year) through to where we find it now in a sadly odd state of limbo (though if you’ve gotten here you’ll now know that some of us still love it enough to try and keep it going however we can).
The work that Jordan and others have done to get this able to live load classic Winamp 2.x compatible skins in a web browser is massively impressive and just shows how far web technologies have come compared to what could be done when Winamp first appeared (though I doubt many will remember the winamp-based ampx project which ran as an activex control in Internet Explorer).
Not to forget about modern skins, there’s been two that stand out from the last year. As believe it or not, a lot of people love the modern skins which originated from the much maligned Winamp3 times.
The first is a new skin known as Big Bento Modern which is inspired by the Bento skins that first appeared in Winamp 5.5 back in 2007. This is taking a lot of the things that people love about the Bento skins but applies a modern twist along with a slew of great new additions that still show off the versatility of Winamp’s modern skin engine.
The second modern skin is Quinto Black CT which first appeared in 2016 and has been seeing regular updates since then to make it into very a popular modern skin.
So what can we expect for the next year of Winamp? That’s a hard one to say for anything official regarding Winamp as it’s current owner has gone very quiet on that matter with one user recently posting on the official facebook page that “a new Winamp version is like Half Life 3…. everyone is hoping, for something thats never gonna happen“.
I would like to think that things are a bit more positive since in the Half Life 3 example the community of users have still kept producing new content and that’s still happening with Winamp (which as has been noted before, the community was the biggest part of what made Winamp great). WACUP is one of those community attempts with a planned v1.0 for around the end of June 2018 (with a smidgeon of wiggle room :) ) so that’s something good to look forward to for Windows users.
There’s also Winamp plug-ins still being updated (mainly for video game music related formats like the vgmstream project which has been going for a number of years and even if it’s not as frantic development as it used to be, there is still developer interest.
So despite the rough road that Winamp has had over recent years (let’s not focus on that), there’s some good things to focus on moving forward and that’s well worth raising a glass (or however you want to do it) to celebrate Winamp whether your just nostalgic for it or you’re still an active user of the program.
And always remember that Winamp… It Really Whips the Llama’s Ass! ❤