Big Plans: Fathom
The new Fathom is already pretty cool, especially now that you can use it on specific artists, but of course there's plenty more I'd like it to do! 
  • For starters, it needs a search box so you don't need to monkey with the URL to look up a specific artist.
  • I'd like for Fathom to know about your collection. This could mean your saved albums in Spotify, but it would be great to be able to import collections from elsewhere. For instance, when Rdio shut down, they provided a complete dump of your favorites/collection, and a number of people (myself included) found it was too big to load into Spotify without hitting their collection size limit. Anyway, once Fathom knows about your collection, you can use your collection as a starting point for new explorations. Also, while loading related albums during an exploration, it can automatically not show albums that are already in your collection (because you're looking to discover new stuff, not things you already know).
  • Once it knows about your collection, it can also have a "collection random" mode. When picking out what to listen to next, I find being presented with, say, 20 random albums for my collection is a great way to keep it fresh… It's not a pure shuffle (since I'm still picking from those random albums) but it's also not just left up to me and my ruts.
  • The flipside to knowing about your collection is to also know about artists you don't like. This enables another favorite feature of mine, "music triage". When listening to new music I don't necessarily have the presence of mind to say "that's great, let me add it to my collection so I can hear it again", but if later I'm presented with a list of albums I listened to that I haven't triaged, it's usually pretty easy to go through and say "yup, liked that one" and "nope, no way". This way these new albums get added to my collection and presented to me as part of "collection random".
  • Also, of course, if Fathom knows which artists you don't like, it can stop them from coming up during explorations.

A lot of these features enhance Fathom's music discovery functionality, but "collection random" and "music triage" are also about re-discovery, connecting more deeply with the things you've already found. I think both of these modes are important, and they complement each other well.

Of course there are even crazier things I'd love to get into… For instance, what if your entire collection was laid out in a giant Fathom tapestry, with each album "geographically" located near other similar albums, creating a great map of your favorite music. Off the coastline of this continent of albums there could be related albums waiting to be discovered.

Anyway, these are things I have on my mind for Fathom. What do you think? Does anything in particular excite you? Did I leave your favorite feature idea off the list? Let me know!