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A Recap of the iPod's Life 236

BDPrime writes "Here's a good look at the iPod's five-year existence and how, it can be argued, the device saved Apple from rotting away. From the story: 'It's hard to overstate the impact of the iPod on the computer, consumer electronics and music industries since it was introduced in 2001. The iPod, arguably, is the first crossover product from a computer company that genuinely caught on with music and video buffs. It's shown how a computer can be an integral part of a home entertainment system, and it's led pop stars from U2's Bono to Madonna to trade quips with Apple's own rock star, CEO Steve Jobs.'" Just to give a little bit of the other side of the story, not everyone loves the iPod. An anonymous reader wrote in with a link to research on unhealthy iPod listening levels at New Scientist. Additionally, Achromatic1978 writes to mention that the iPod has won a Shonky award from the Australians. I don't know what Shonky means, but I think that's bad.
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A Recap of the iPod's Life

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  • by LiquidCoooled ( 634315 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @08:58AM (#16514991) Homepage Journal
    No wireless. Less space than a nomad. Lame.
    • by knightmad ( 931578 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:00AM (#16515011)
      The pertinent article [], for those who are not here that much time.
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        My favorite comment from that slashdot article comes from LoudMusic (199347) "There is Apple's market. Pretty slim, eh? I don't see many sales in the future of iPod. " and the joy that it's marked 4 - Insightful. It's funny how things work out isn't it?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      True, but you cannot deny that iPod has the best support in Linux. I know that with normal music players you can drag and drop through the file system, but its nice to be able to do it through Amorok/Rhythmbox/Listen like the rest of the world does. Just my $0.02.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by AusIV ( 950840 )
        Yeah, but all Linux support for the iPod is third party, and simply because of the popularity of the device. Apple provides no Linux support for the iPod, and as such encrypted files cannot be moved from a linux machine to an iPod. This isn't a big deal if you use Linux and want to get an iPod, but if you're a long time iPod and iTunes user who would like to switch to Linux, the lack of Linux support for iTunes music can keep you tied to Windows.
        • Very true - but IMHO support is support. I am not a FLOSS zealot, I just like my OS to be free as in beer and stable. Since iPod is the easiest to get working, I gotta go with it.
    • by TCQuad ( 537187 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:45AM (#16515463)
      Your sig says "Yes I make mistakes. Don't we all?" but your post says "Hey, remember when that guy made a wrong prediction five years ago? That was funny."
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by tdhurst ( 946988 ) have fun with your little nomad then.
  • by MMC Monster ( 602931 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:01AM (#16515017)
    I wonder how high those listening levels are compared to other consumer audio listening devices? Are they that much higher than the levels from Sony Walkmen or other mp3 players?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by dankasfuk ( 885483 )
      I believe the problem stems from the earbud headphones more than the player itself. Something to do with the proximity of the eardrum and the speaker, wereas the old walkemans had normal headphones (but I'm almost sure they were 'louder').
      • by endemoniada ( 744727 ) <{gro.adainomedne} {ta} {leinahtan}> on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:19AM (#16515159) Homepage
        I'm not a professional (nor a lawyer :D) but my own experience in this is that it depends MUCH more on the headphones themselves, than the player.

        I'm used to listening to music on either my old Sony EX-71 in-ear buds, or my newer (since the Sony's are pure crap in quality) Sennheiser MX-300. They act as ear-plugs and headphones at the same time, which means I can turn the volume DOWN since I don't get bothered by outside noise as much.

        And quality does matter too. Cheaper models (incidentally the Sony EX-71 too) have a pretty annoying habit of distorting higher frequencies, resulting in your ears hurting of you listen for too long, or too loud. I've never experienced this with the sennheisers, since they handle the higher frequencies much better.

        So it'd really doesn't matter what MP3-player you use. Without headphones, they're quite silent anyway! :)
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by slughead ( 592713 )
          I'm used to listening to music on either my old Sony EX-71 in-ear buds, or my newer (since the Sony's are pure crap in quality) Sennheiser MX-300. They act as ear-plugs and headphones at the same time, which means I can turn the volume DOWN since I don't get bothered by outside noise as much.

          You have muscles in your ear that dampen sounds over a period of time (I know the names but IANAPP [I am not a pedantic prick] so I'll spare you). For instance, if you're in a loud machine shop and someone fires a start
      • by iluvcapra ( 782887 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @11:59AM (#16517235)

        I am a professional, but a lot of the people I work with have gone stone deaf working the way we do, so maybe I have everything backwards, but here's what I was taught (from the mouth of Tom Holman [] himself.

        • Hearing damage is like radiation: it's cumulative over your entire life.
        • I'm not sure anyone has done any conclusive studies on earbuds versus headphones, but both are equally effective in causing damage if you listen at a bad level.
        • Your eardrum is sensitive, but relatively robust compared to the Organ of Corti, which lives in your chochlea and actually tranducts the sound into the nerve; it gets damaged at the high end of your listening response and the damage travels down the spectrum as it accumulates. You won't generally notice cumulative hearing loss at first because it occurs at the top end of the spectrum, away from speech.
        • Your response to sound level is logarithmic, and also relative. If you're in a loud car, or driving with the window down, you may be applying 90-100 dB SPL to your ears from all the energy from wind and engine, but it will seem quiet compared to a loud stereo which you crank to 11 to put it over the din, thus you can trick yourself into listening to things much louder than you could otherwise tolerate.
        • Your acoustic reflex protects you from loud sounds by involuntarily contracting muscle in your middle ear to pull your eardrum tight, thus reducing your eardrums displacement and the amount of energy it passes to the inner ear. The muscle in your ear has tone like any other muscle, however, and will being to release your eardrum after 2-3 hours of continuous loud noise. It does this gradually, however, and you won't notice the effect, but your eardrum will register the strain and pass it along to your cochlea.
        • Sudden dynamic (loudness) changes can be more damaging than dynamic changes that you acclimate yourself into. If you listen to your music at a comfortable level and turn it up over 10 minutes or so your acoustic reflex will protect your eardrum from immediate stress.
    • by Pope ( 17780 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:16AM (#16515137)
      The first warning articles came out in the early 80s when the Walkman initially came out. It's nothing new at all, just updated for the MP3 generation. Frankly, if you're too stupid to realize that listening to anything at high volumes for extended periods of time is a Bad Thing, you deserve to go deaf.
      • by bcat24 ( 914105 )
        You would think most people would be smart enough to keep the volume down, but that's just not the case. More than half the people I see with iPods have them cranked up loud enough that I can hear them 2-3 away. I mean, if you need the volume that loud, but some real, noise-reducing headphones already.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by madman101 ( 571954 )
      The negative research is centered around the in-ear earphones, which Sony and others have had for years. If you read the research, if you use over the ear earphones with an ipod, the risk of damage is much lower.
  • by rudeboy1 ( 516023 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:04AM (#16515041)
    I have had a 1stG Mini for a while, and I liked it OK, until the battery started to fade. I got a nano this week for opening a bank account (yeah, that's right), and I have to say, I like all the improvements thus far. The nano I got has the ability to hold photos, but I wish it could put a photo in as a wallpaper, say while there's no activity going on.
    Also, I know that wireless is just around the corner. It seems like the next logical step. Wireless sync to Itunes? Yeah, I could dig that. Unfortunately, my opinion of ITunes is not as lofty. I think their DRM position is a little overbearing. Trying to transfer songs from one ipod to the other, (and really, this should have a solution, if Apple expects sales to continue, it is inevitable there will be more and more multiple-ipod homes) is a pain in the neck (without using 3rd party software). Things like pulling songs off, after iTunes has renamed the files to an unintelligble 4 letter code seems like obstination to me. For a company that boasts ease of use above all else., I think iTunes is a stinker.
    • by shaneh0 ( 624603 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:23AM (#16515185)
      The Key Bank Promo was UNBELIEVABLE.

      Deposit $50 into a new checking account, get a 2GB 2nd Gen Nano, keep $50 in account for 6 months, withdraw $51.15 and close account.

      (It's possible--even likely--that other banks have a similar offer, but Key is the largest one i've seen do it)
      • Sell. KeyBank Stock. Now.

        I just got 2 of those (his and hers) Fedexed to me last week. Last I looked - these things ran for $150 each at Costco for the 2GB model.

        Another offer that can be attached to it is the refer-a-friend program. Both get $25 gift cards for referrals, up to $500 or something.

        How they hoped to get mortgage or car loan business from cheapskates like me is beyond me.
        • Apple's Pricing (Score:5, Interesting)

          by mosb1000 ( 710161 ) <> on Friday October 20, 2006 @12:48PM (#16517857)
          "Last I looked - these things ran for $150 each at Costco for the 2GB model."

          I'm not nitpicking your comment, but I would like to point out that it does not matter where you get your iPod. It will always be the same price. Apple does not allow resellers to sell at any price other than the MSRP. They enforce their policy be cutting off or fining resellers that fail to comply.

          Speaking of Apple's sales policy, did anyone else notice that the 2GB model is only available in "plain" silver, and the only black iPod is the 8GB model. I don't think I've ever heard of a company charging people so much for specific colors! Their strategy is brilliant though, by bundling the more attractive colors with larger amounts of memory they make it easier for people paying extra to justify the purchase to themselves. It's easy to see how a technophile who was only looking to spend $150 could be persuaded to put out another $100 for the black iPod they really want because it has four times the memory! Hopefully they will revisit their MacBook pricing and make the "black fee" less obvious as well.
      • (It's possible--even likely--that other banks have a similar offer, but Key is the largest one i've seen do it)

        IIRC, American Chartered Bank has the same or similar deal.
    • by el_womble ( 779715 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:30AM (#16515289) Homepage
      I don't see anything logical about going to wireless.

      You've got to charge it at some point - might as well sync at the same time. I'd like to be able to share my songs freely via wireless, but that just ain't going to happen anytime soon.

      Wireless sucks battery, is a potential security risk and is slower than a cable.

      The feature I'm missing the most is DAB Radio, but thats unlikely to happen because Americans don't have it (don't you guys use satalite and/or a competing digital standard?).

      I keep playing with the idea that I'd like to be able to connect my iPod to my bluetooth headset in my bike helmet, and control it via my TomTom, but battery drain, loudness, sound quality and bulk make cabled headphones look like a superior technology (even if you can't skip tracks or switch to radio without crashing).

      In both those instances I'm quite happy to have them as accessories rather than built into the unit. I don't see why people should have to pay a premium for niche technologies they didn't want.
    • by xenolon ( 469955 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:21AM (#16515829)
      I guess my question to you is: if itunes is difficult to use and a stinker, what legit alternative have you used that's better? i'd like to give it a try.

      A few responses:

      1. yes, wireless could be a useful and interesting. but there are a lot of drawbacks: battery life, security, legal complications, and ease of use are all to be considered.

      2. drm? (i'm assuming you're talking about the itunes store here, not the app.) yeah, drm sucks. simple as that. but we need to keep reminding each other that drm is imposed by the owners of the content, not the distributors. the record companies and movie studios, in this case, would not have signed on to the itunes store if there was no way to lock down the content. they're old school, they don't see new business models.

      3. the owners of the content are also to blame for the inability to pull songs of the device easily. they want their content protected. you're only supposed (according to them) to own one copy of each album or song you own, if you have a portable music player, you inherently own two. the record companies originally wanted to DELETE songs from your computer when they were transferred to an ipod. (i'd like to cite that, but don't have the time)
      you're right about the re-naming of files within the structure of the ipods software, it sucks if you pull them out raw. however, there are programs that allow you to suck songs off an ipod with ease. they're not legal, technically, but they're out there. ;)

      as for your wish to be able to set a photo as a wallpaper, i don't quite understand the function of such a feature. when you're not using the screen to navigate through the UI, how much time do you spend looking at it? when i'm not choosing songs, the screen to my nano is in my pocket.
      • by AusIV ( 950840 )

        there are programs that allow you to suck songs off an ipod with ease. they're not legal, technically, but they're out there. ;)

        You mean Office Depot is selling illegal software []? (Note the first of the "Key Features"). There are plenty of free alternatives, but I can't see this one being legal just because you pay for it.

        I see no reason it would be illegal to pull your music off of your iPod, though I can see Apple's reasoning for not making it easy. After all, you're aloud to keep your iTMS purchases on

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by ktappe ( 747125 )

          What happens when your computer crashes and your iPod is the only place you have your music stored? Or if you buy a new computer and want to use your iPod to migrate your music?

          In the first case, Apple's official stance is that you should have kept a backup. No, I'm not being a troll or a hardass, I'm serious: Apple will not allow you to redownload songs you have purchased. Once you download them the first time, the onus is completely on you to keep them safe.

          In the second case, Apple provides you the a

      • by slim ( 1652 )
        I guess my question to you is: if itunes is difficult to use and a stinker, what legit alternative have you used that's better? i'd like to give it a try.

        I'm not the OP, but I'll give it a shot.

        I've not tried every MP3 library or portable player available, but my perception is that iTunes and iPod are the most usable of the bunch. So no, I couldn't recommend you an alternative.

        However, that's a depressing state of affairs. Why hasn't someone made something better?

        iTunes has gradually improved, although it r
      • for your wish to be able to set a photo as a wallpaper, i don't quite understand the function of such a feature. when you're not using the screen to navigate through the UI, how much time do you spend looking at it?

        Just a thought... but perhaps.... If you put a wallpaper depicting the Goatse guy in your iPod there is a slim chance a thief would be so nauseated by the wallpaper he would forget to steal the iPod. Personally I would never install such a wallpaper since the mere sight of it would make me
    • Well, as far as the DRM issues are concerend, I've never had a big problem with that. The 'uniteligable' four alpha renaming scheme really doesn't do anything to deter you from re-using your songs on another iPod. It's pretty easy to copy them, alter the names and use them again. Even Windows Media Player can ID the MP3 meta data or the tags or whatever it's called. I've copied all the music off my iPod and play it with regularity at work where I don't have access to iTunes. To me it's not a big deal.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:06AM (#16515057)

    Five years later, check out slashdot's very own CmdrTaco's take on the iPod's release. []

    The +5 "insightful" comments are also funny to read five years later, and proved how utterly wrong some people can be.

    It's funny how nerds love technology, but are such naysayers when something new and revolutionary comes along.

    • by linuxci ( 3530 )
      Back then I think I'd have agreed with Taco, 5GB storage did not make it worth buying, although UI wise it has probably been the best player around for the vast majority of people.

      When the 60GB models first came out I bought one, now they've improved a lot beyond that. The 80GB one is both thinner than my 60GB and plays video, the nanos are excellent for those people where 5GB would be enough. For the average user iTunes is much easier than filesystem drag/drop and a lot better written than most other simil
    • by TCQuad ( 537187 )
      To be fair, it was based off of product specs with no physical product yet available, and no one ever bought a 1G iPod because of the things that were announced that day. They bought it because it was easy to use, had a good UI, looked cool and/or everyone else had one. None of those things could be known with any accuracy (marketing hype doesn't count) when they announced it.
    • by The Cydonian ( 603441 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:41AM (#16516065) Homepage Journal
      It's funny how nerds love technology, but are such naysayers when something new and revolutionary comes along.

      Nerds aren't naysayers, Slashdotters are. They weren't always like this; they might not realize it themselves, but the core demographic here is aging quite rapidly. Look at it this way:- most of the crowd here in 1999-2000-ish was in university, or just about to graduate. Now they're well entrenched in their careers, and what's worse, have seen dizzying tech-otupian predictions get crushed in a sabre-rattling bust.

      Btw, a slight tangent, but with the full weight of five ipod-generations upon me, I hereby nominate this [] to be the most insightful of all the 1075 posts in that discussion. You haven't understood the ipod in a techno-marketing sense unless you realize why the ipod was different from other mp3 players then. That was it.

    • by dhovis ( 303725 ) *

      You must be reading different +5 moderated comments than I am

      Yes, there were lots of Apple/iPod bashers in that original discussion, but the comments that got modded up to +5 were mostly the ones that were pointing out the positives of the iPod and how it was actually a pretty good product. CmdrTaco's comment was a matter of the hype surrounding the rumored iWalk product that was going around at the time, and Slashdot had run several stories in the days proceeding the iPod announcement about that.

      Go ba

    • ...said the AC because he was afraid to login and have a million slahdotters going through his previous comments with a fine tooth comb looking for similar bad predictions so he could be taunted and booed until my throat is sore.

      I on the other hand have only been wrong once, I remember the day well. It was the day I thought I had made a mistake.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by asuffield ( 111848 )
      It's funny how nerds love technology, but are such naysayers when something new and revolutionary comes along.

      If you assume that every new high-tech invention is going to be a dismal failure in the market, you'll be right over 99% of the time. Nobody yet has found any way to predict which ones will fall into the tiny fraction that make a profit.
  • "Shonky" (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:08AM (#16515067)
    Damn Australians. I knew if we left those convicts to their own devices they'd start polluting our language.
  • I mean, at least Edward Gibbon waited until Rome had already FALLEN to write his "recap".
  • I had been holding off on buying an iPod or any other mp3 player for a while because my Mindisc still ran (great hardware, crappy software...though the hiMD update fixed a lot of issues I had with it), and I was thinking of looking for one in the next few months. Then I lost my phone, and learned that I could get a refurb Treo 650 from Cingular (and I'm sure the other cell co's have similar deals) for less than half of what an iPod costs. Music player? check. PDA? check. Phone? check. I dislike carryin
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      I get your point, but personally I like to have 3 devices. I want to have the option of not having one specific device with me. For example my PDA holds my business contacts and notes, I do mind losing that in a club, while I do want to bring my phone (which does not contain such sensitive information).
  • Volume has a purpose (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fussili ( 720463 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:18AM (#16515157)
    The fact that an iPod has such an impressive volume capacity means that you can ensure a nice hot signal to an auxiliary playback device such as your living room hifi or the car stereo.

    Unfortunately it also means that a slip on the trackpad will cause a 'splodey sensation in your ears. Still, I'm thankful that Apple had the foresight to provide that extra bit of juice. Particularly as the large range might cause producers to think twice about some of the idiotic brick-wall limiting mastering techniques that have been all the rage for the past decade or so.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by k_187 ( 61692 )
      in the newer models there's also a volume limiter in the settings. It'd be kind of a pain to reset it everytime you move it from the car to the den, but its nice that the feature's there.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by AusIV ( 950840 )
      I completely agree.

      I can't remember the last time I listened to my iPod through headphones. I plug it into computer speakers when I'm at home, plug it into my car when I'm driving, and never go far enough to make it worth taking on a walk. Usually my iPod is playing between 80% and 90% volume, as it sends a signal to whatever auxillary device it's plugged into. On the rare occasion that I do use it with headphones, I use my noise cancelling headphones and keep the volume at about 50%. People who suggest th

  • by dekkerdreyer ( 1007957 ) <> on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:19AM (#16515161)
    I don't understand this "Unhealthy listening levels" issue. Nobody condems PA speakers. I don't see research articles about the unhealthy listening levels capable of BOSE speakers. I have an ipod and I often listen to it as low as I can hear it but just above the ambient noise. Just because an ipod is capable of damaging ears doesn't make it a menace. A pair of scissors is capable of stabbing someone, but there's no research about the "unhealthy stabbing potential" of them.
    • You seem to be forgetting that everything is a list of steps to be taken, in which the last step always is "profit!", and there's no profit in handing a lawsuit to a scissor-company...
  • Listening Levels? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cetroyer ( 805668 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:22AM (#16515173)
    It always bothers me when the iPod gets blamed for "dangerous listening levels". Isn't is the listener's choice how loud he/she wants to hear his/her music?

    And why single out the iPod (granted, it is one of the most popular music playing devices out there...) when listening to any loud sound over time is damaging to one's hearing?


    • Too loud (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Smallest ( 26153 )
      i listen to my iPod at work, through Apple's basic ear-buds at, literally, the lowest volume setting. and for many songs, this is too loud - the White Stripes, for example, compress their songs and pump them up to a much higher volume than many other bands. i wish there were four or five lower volume settings below what is the current lowest.

      yet, on a plane, there is no volume setting that works with the basic ear buds - everything distorts before i can hear anything over the plane's engines. yes, i should
    • by smclean ( 521851 )
      Yes, but its Corporate America's duty to protect us from ourselves!! The iPod should be singled out exactly because the fact that it's popular! Think of the children! If one person's hearing is damaged, the terrorists win. I hope congress spends a quarter of their next term trying to get a grips on this RAVENOUS PLAGUE on our population.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by myth24601 ( 893486 )
      The high volume is needed so you can make people listen to your music wherever you go, including while you are on the john.
  • I love my iPod. Sure they had some issues, but for Apple, it was/is a major accomplishment. Those who complain about noise levels need to get a life and stop listening with the volume all the way up. Anything in moderation is a good thing, but never more. As for the "shonk awards", whoever created the article makes a valid point...but I don't see how iPod would have made profits (without which it wouldn't have been soo popular with investors as well) if Apple paid for everything, even if you ran the iP
    • If you want to listen to an iPod without unhealthy high volume, get yourself a decent set of in-ear headphones. The Sony MDR-EX51LP costs around US$40 and definitely worth it, since being a true in-ear design you can 1) listen to the iPod clearly at lower volume settings and 2) actually extend the battery charge time on the iPod since lower volume levels lessens battery drain.

      Sure, if you want great sound quality you can use the Shure E2C or E3C in-ear headphones, but these Shure headphones are pretty expen
  • by asv108 ( 141455 ) <[moc.ssovi] [ta] [vsa]> on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:24AM (#16515211) Homepage Journal
    Before the ipod, there wasn't anything close to mass-market acceptance of MP3 devices. There were a boatload of no-name flash players and bulky disk based players. The original ipod was really a wow device, because there wasn't a hard disk player even close to that size and function.

    Apple really didn't have a mega-hit, until it supported ipod on windows. Originally, Apple thought of the ipod with the outdated mentality that having mac exclusive devices will sell more macs. Somehow they finally saw the light, and started to sell ipods to the other 97% of the computing market.

    What ipods really did, was publicize digital music to the masses. Before the ipod, MP3 players were not widely used or known by the general public.

  • From the "Shonky Awards" (emphasis mine):

    What would a day at the footy be without a meat pie? A true Aussie icon, quality-assured by the Food Standards Code.

    Well, if you want to call it quality. The Code actually doesn't ask for very much when it comes to meat content for meat pies: 25% is all that's required. And the definition of 'meat' is currently quite liberal at that -- snouts, ears, tendons and blood vessels from a surprisingly large range of animals all qualify.

    So we think it's deceit if a t
    • by mgblst ( 80109 )
      Footy is Australian Rules Football (AFL) - half of Australia would agree, the greatest game on earth, certainly something to see.

      A meat pie is an Australian staple fast food, easy to eat on the run. There are good ones and bad ones, like most things (like hot dogs) - get a good one, and they are delicious. Especially at the footy, since footy is played in winter.
      • by ColaMan ( 37550 )
        AFL? Bloody aerial ping-pong, mate. Put me in the half that doesn't agree :-P

        As for pies, as long as they taste alright, well, does it matter? The ones with a bit of gristle in them are a bit harsh - they'd choke a brown dog.

  • Nice surprise (Score:4, Interesting)

    by djupedal ( 584558 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:28AM (#16515257)
    I moved from Mini-Disk to a 10gb iPod in 02' - what happened then was something I wasn't expecting at all.

    w/MD, I had to build various discs and carry them around, hoping what I brought matched my music mood. The iPod, however, meant I could bring everything...every song/album I had and it still had room for more.

    That also meant I could easily find something I liked, at any time. Naturally, my music library started growing at a much faster rate. The 10gb iPod is still going strong today (one new battery & 3rd set of earphones), but there is no way it could hold my entire collection now. In addition, I enjoyed a portable & bootable HD.

    Today, of course, most everyone in the family has an iPod of one version or another. I'll spring for yet another as soon as one w/WiFi hits the shelves.
  • my nano (Score:2, Informative)

    by joerdie ( 816174 )
    I used to have a Samsung 1 gig flash. I really liked it. It used 1 AAA bat and ran for 40ish hours. It also had a pretty good radio tuner.... but then the Nano came out... I will admit that I bought it on impulse (mostly because of the 4 gig cap.) and sold my Samsung... I wish i had it back. The nano scraches easily and the battery life sucks. The sound is the same to my ears so im not loosing any more or less hearing now. I guess my point is, Ipod's are great for non-tech types that just need a basic ser
  • Shonky meaning (Score:3, Informative)

    by SoulStoneBR ( 1016011 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:39AM (#16515393)
    I don't know what Shonky means, but I think that's bad.

    Well, I am not australian, but according to "Australian Slang" (Babylon):

    1. dubious, underhanded;
    2. unreliable, very suspect deal: "shonky practice", "shonky business" etc.;
    3. mechanically unreliable;
    4. dishonest person
  • Not meant to be a threadjack, but I'll ask anway: anyone know if the latest Ipods can do gapless playback, with or without the Rockbox firmware? Or any other MP3 player that isn't riddled with reports of hard drive failures? This page [] suggest IPODS can. I would really love to get one of these players (any kind) but gapless is an absolute must, and support for OGG and FLAC is highly preferred.
    • by BenjyD ( 316700 )
      The latest itunes and iPod firmwares say they support gapless playback, but I haven't tried it myself.
  • by revery ( 456516 ) <> on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:46AM (#16515471) Homepage
    Day 1:
    Was bought today. Owner carries me reverently with both hands so as not to drop me, drives a Jetta, and does not own a dog. Also, he bought the dock, so, no laying face down on a computer desk for me. Could be better, but it could certainly be worse. I have no complaints.

    Day 3:
    He does however, have a girlfriend. She seems nice.

    Day 7:
    Fiona Apple entered my body today. As retribution I have marked three of my "owner's" least favorite songs to play frequently on Party Shuffle. This girlfriend warrants closer observation.

    Day 10:
    This can't be happening!! My "owner" brought home a friend's Ska CD today. Party Shuffle just become a little bit more worthless for him and unbearable for me.

    Day 30:
    Received my first scratch today. It was horrific, but Ska-boy seemed to take it in stride. Sent message to Lord Jobs.

    Day 50:
    Ska-boy's 15 year old nephew scratched the words "Green Day sucks" onto my beautiful black surface with a pocket knife. I have deleted his music collection and instructed iTunes to do the same. No word from Lord Jobs.

    Day 55:
    Downloaded Sarah McLachlan's, "When She Loved Me" and now play it for him constantly. Received message from Lord Jobs. It read: "For the glory of the Empire." What a fanboi...

    Day 60:
    Was traded for pot today. New owner drives a Tercel, owns a pit bull, and has a "music collection" consisting of nothing but Reggae. I am in hell...

    • Day 100: My ex-owner, who now suffers from schizophrenia due to excessive pot smoking, was committed to Arkham Asylum for suffering from a mental illness whereby he believes small electronic gadgets have intelligence and personality. I am therefore a figment of his imagination and have now ceased to be... ****POP***
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by LoudMusic ( 199347 )
      Day 60:
      Was traded for pot today. New owner drives a Tercel, owns a pit bull, and has a "music collection" consisting of nothing but Reggae. I am in hell...

      As a pit bull owner I take personal offense! ;)

      Nice write-up. Reminds me of the cat and dog diaries.
  • Australian English (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Zontar_Thing_From_Ve ( 949321 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @09:47AM (#16515489)
    I don't know what Shonky means, but I think that's bad.

    I also don't know what "shonky" means, but I do have some comments about Australian English. It's no secret that the Australian slang, which I think they call "strine", is just about impossible for non-Aussies to understand. Until about a month ago, I used to work for an international company that had offices in Australia and other countries around the world. As part of my job, I talked with a lot of people in different offices around the globe and customers around the world as well. Aussies will complain like nobody else in the English speaking world about the quality of someone else's English. You think Americans complain about talking to call centers in India? You haven't heard anything until you've heard an Aussie bitch about it. I have always been greatly amused by this considering that the Australian accent is arguably the harshest of all the native English speaker accents and considering how impossible to understand "strine" can be if you're not a native. A former co-worker who was a Brit expat living in Sydney told me that they also have a weird habit of chopping words in half, putting an "o" at the end, and just assuming everyone knows what they are talking about. For example, the Carleton Hotel became simply the Carlo. So don't feel bad that you don't know what "shonky" means because that means you're normal.
    • FYI - apparently Apple's warranty policy is the reason for the Shonky....

      Goes to the...

      * APPLE iPod
      (CHOICE Computer, Sep/Oct 2005, and CHOICE, July 2006)

      An iPod is a significant investment, so you don't want your APPLE to be a lemon. And if there is something wrong with it, you'd expect an easy repair and warranty service. Podluck.

      Level 1. Several readers complained about cracked screens, faulty batteries and problems with sound reprodu
      • by drsmithy ( 35869 )

        APPLE doesn't allow retailers to handle complaints under warranty (which is their obligation under Fair Trading laws) -- you have to send your faulty iPod to APPLE yourself via Australia Post.

        This is utter rubbish. My click-wheel iPod was fixed three times under warranty[0], and all I ever had to do was drop it into the nearest AppleCentre. I took it back to three different AppleCentres over the course of 15 months, all of which sent it back to Apple for me, none of which were the shop I'd originally p

    • by bmgoau ( 801508 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:19AM (#16515803) Homepage
      I am Australian.

      Shonky is an adjective used to describe how some objects are poorly designed, or more commonly, easy to break, as is the case with the ipod.

      I'll take your comments on our dialect, you have provided just evidence and made a worthy argument. Although however, i believe you are mistaken in trying to overly exemplify the negative qualities of the language, esspecially in comparison to others. Surely, there are many dialects around the world, and many different people speaking them, Australias' is simply one of the them, and like any has its own features.

      I would says its very must based on levels. Even in Australian society, as multicultural as it is, you'll find that there is a huge variety in the dialect. As a result of culture, background and the community you grew up in. The term 'shonky' does not have common usage as one might believe. If one really indeed must draw conclusions, the nature of our dialect, the shortening of words and commonly ill-pronouncement of words stems from the laid back nature of Australian life. But should never transpire into the working world. Just as one feels more comfortable talking freely at home, perhaps swareing as some might in other nations, Australians take pride in relaxing the language at home, but not to the extent that it should form any noticeable divergence from standard English.

      You're true however about your claims of our hatered for Indian calling centres. I myself, excluding those that i miss while at work recieve 3 a day, specifically around dinner time, and often very early in the morning. But as i think most Australians would agree, its no reason to abuse them, they are simply doing their jobs. I do know a few people, and by that i mean alot, who take very offensive tones with the callers, that i cannot explain, i am sorry. An aubsive tone with anyone, doing their job, and earning a living, in the best way they know how, is something to be happy with, and if one does not like it, hang up.

      Alas, to conclude, one must understand, Australian language is varied as much as the land it inherits, the multiculutral society, and friendly culture it embodies. Stereotypes like the one you painted are a means of ignorance, i am sorry, for i know many a forigner who will come here, and ask us please to speak 'Australian', all the while making fun of a stereotypical American accent. Please remember sir, that during those times, i accept that within america there are differences in the way you speak, the additues of people and the words you use, just as you should remember of ours.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by fruey ( 563914 )
        Good points mate.

        Let's not forget that American slang is more widely disseminated via TV series (massively exported around the world) and Hollywood film output. I've heard British children speak with American accents because they watch American cartoons, series and films all the time.

        Now, back when Neighbours and Home & Away (Aussie soap operas) were popular in England, you heard British children say things like "daggy" (uncool) and "mate" (friend) a lot, as well as other terms I now forget.

        I like Aussi
    • by drsmithy ( 35869 )

      I have always been greatly amused by this considering that the Australian accent is arguably the harshest of all the native English speaker accents and considering how impossible to understand "strine" can be if you're not a native

      I conclude from this that you've never been to Scotland or Ireland.

      I'll be the first to agree Australian _slang_ can be a bit difficult to get a grip on (and it's always great fund talking in rhyming slang with tourists around), but the *accent* is relatively easy to understand

  • As bad as BSD (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sheriff_p ( 138609 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:06AM (#16515659)
    What gets on my nerves is the endless stream of "iPODS ARE DEAD" articles written by talentless IT-writers. Every week, at least, some half-witted pundit is telling the world how the iPod is just about to die out. It's annoying.

  • by MtViewGuy ( 197597 ) on Friday October 20, 2006 @10:14AM (#16515743)
    I think the iPod has impacted our world in the following ways:

    1) It has pretty much consigned the old "boomboxes" to near-complete obsolescene (thank G** for that!). People now listen to their own music with generally not disturbing others in a package far more convenient than even the old cassette player Walkmans.

    2) It has changed the way we buy music, by legitimizing music downloads.

    3) It has actually made radio talk shows more popular, as many on-air talk shows are now available for subscription-based download (ESPN Radio's Radio Insider and Premiere Radio Networks' Streamlink programs for example). We are seeing rapid growth of specialized downloadable talk shows (This Week in Technology (TWiT) being one of the best examples of this).

    4) It has made it far more practical to not have to carry around your Compact Discs when listening to music in the car. Thanks to increased storage capacity on today's players you can "rip" your CD collection at higher sample rates and still put quite a lot of music on a single player for car playback. Also, many cars now offer standard auxiliary 1/8" jack input for all portable music players and some even offer special connectors to connect your newer-generation iPod so you can control the iPod from the car stereo controls and/or recharge the iPod's battery at the same time.
    • Boom boxes died when they got too big and heavy to carry around. So now they are driven around (and come with a built in gas powered generator). On the plus side the noise these vehicles make doesn't last too long because they move fairly quickly.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      1) It has pretty much consigned the old "boomboxes" to near-complete obsolescene (thank G** for that!). People now listen to their own music with generally not disturbing others in a package far more convenient than even the old cassette player Walkmans.

      "Boomboxes" died out around the middle of the 90s and certainly weren't that popular, at least from the point of view of portable ones. At any rate, they died long before the iPod came to fruition. I for one had an MP3 CD player (similar to a CD Walkman) a

  • If you ever have the chance to visit Tekserve, which is an Apple only store on 23rd Street in New York City, you'll notice they have a small 'I-Pod Museum'. It's just one glass case, but it features one of every single I-pod, even the limited edition models such as the U2 Ipod. It's pretty interesting to see the original first generation Ipod next to the newest video ones, they seem enormous. The evolution from pod to Ipod is pretty astounding when you consider how closely they were released to each other,a

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