Shalom Life | April 25, 2014

Rap Genius Launches App for Mobile

Our favourite curators of hip hop and knowledge have launched a new app called 'Genius' that lets you browse through the meanings of songs, poetry and news

By: Daniel Koren

Published: January 30th, 2014 in Business » World

Speaking to Mahmod Moghadam was perhaps one of the most interesting conversations I've ever had in my life. We spoke on a range of topics from hip hop to news to poetry to the bible, subsequently, areas all covered within the Rap Genius spectrum.

"Rap Genius is the 'Internet Talmud' as it breaks down all of text," he explained to me. "The reason we started with rap is because its at the cutting edge of human culture. It's available in every language, it's something people with lower and higher incomes have embraced, so it speaks to the majority."

Though there an infinite amount of adjectives one could use to describe him, one stands out among all: ambitious.

That's why I was somewhat discouraged when the whole SEO scandal happened with Google. And while it may have been a bit mischievous on their part, I also knew that this wasn't the sort of thing that would slow them down.

And here we are, a month later, and the Jewish kids from 'Chabad Central' are back with their first official app for mobiles and smartphones: Genius.

The Internet Talmud lives on.

Genius, rightfully, allows you to browse through explanations, interpreted by the coveted members of the Rap Genius community (join here), of songs, news, poetry, even historical documents.

What's pretty neat about it is that you can check out the meanings of songs you're listening to on your iPhone automatically with the app.

“Thousands of years from now, the mobile app is how people will remember Rap Genius”, co-founder Tom Lehman said to TechCrunch's Josh Constine. Lehman added that this was the company's 'second launch' and has recently raised a whopping $16.8 million in funding as it continues its bid to take over the annotation industry.

As Moghadam had told me in our interview, Rap Genius started as a hip hop wikipedia of sorts, but grew because of the love it received from the community. "We're trying to make Rap Genius into Everything Genius," he had said.

By expanding into the mobile market, and with this new round of funding to be used for annotating words outside of rap music, it seems like 'Everything Genius' can actually come to fruition.

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