why the ipod shuffle is not for me

From Apple’s iPod Shuffle FAQ

Can I take a friend’s iPod shuffle and browse or play its content on my machine (like I can with other iPods)?
No, there is no manual mode that allows you to view or play the content from a friend’s iPod shuffle on your computer. This also means that you cannot load music from multiple computers or iTunes libraries onto iPod shuffle like you can with other iPods.


Can I use iTunes to view the songs on my iPod shuffle like I can with other iPods?
No. The iPod shuffle icon that displays in the iTunes Source list is actually a special playlist (like Party Shuffle).It lists which songs in the library are currently configured to be sent to iPod shuffle, but not what’s currently on the unit. If you see a bullet by a song, it indicates that the song was not sent to iPod shuffle. See “Some songs in your iTunes library aren’t copied to your iPod” for reasons why songs were not sent to iPod shuffle.

In sum, once you have loaded music onto the iPod Shuffle from one computer, you can’t plug the Shuffle into any other computer to listen to the music. You can either load it up with music at home and listen to it on the way to work, or you can load it up with music at work and listen to it on the way home. What you can’t do is plug it into your work computer and listen to the music you loaded up at home. This is different from how other iPods work.

If this situation is someone’s sick idea of copyright protection, it’s just stupid.

satellite radio, and why it is not good

Tyler Cowen, over at Marginal Revolution, divides radio listeners into two camps: A – those who only want to hear music from their large stock of familiar/favorite songs and B – those who only want to hear music from their small stock of familiar/favorite songs.

If this is a true generalization, it explains to me fully why I have absolutely no interest in satellite radio. In Ohio, growing up, we had a Top-40 station, and then a Top-40 station for people who didn’t like music by black people. Their slogan was “All of today’s best music, with none of the rap”. Satellite radio is this impulse taken to the extreme — how else could you explain a station on XM that is “all about the most important and well known songs in the history of Alternative Music.” Clearly, that’s a sack of horseshit, right?

For me, there are only two reasons to listen to music on the radio, of any type. First, to be exposed to something new, different, or interesting. Second, and an orthogonal point, is to be exposed to something unpleasant, jarring, ugly, or disheartening. What is the point of listening to a classic rock station if they’re never going to play any Eagles? You need to be punished every now and again, when you listen to the radio. For every Whole Lotta Love, there has to be a D’yer Mak’er.

Listening to the radio in the car — if everything that came on was something you wanted to hear, you’d never get to yell “CHRIST!” and almost crash the car trying to avoid the latest band from a British isle that someone, somewhere, thinks is the new Radiohead. And, you’d never get to change channels and catch the last 30 seconds of whatever mischief Pharrell Williams has cooked up for you this month, leaving you with an unreachable itch you’ll spend the next several hours channel-hopping trying to scratch.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go slip some Mariah Carey onto my girlfriend’s iPod.

infantry and fleet don’t mix

The ladyfriend is in the other room watching Alias, and I’m hearing the melodic strains of “Fade into You” by Mazzy Star wafting out of the spy thriller. Let’s say you’re a music coordinator for a major network drama, and you need something “romantic” and “bittersweet” to play while your main characters look at each other and silently smolder while also defusing a bomb or something. Let’s also say that it’s the year 2005, and that Mazzy Star song is now 11 years old. You, music coordinator, need to think of a different song. I know, it’s your go-to song, your playmaker, but you are a hack if you can’t come up with something else. Yeah, you heard me. If your first thought was either “Portishead” or “Postal Service” you should seriously start thinking about retirement.

Besides, everyone knows that use of “Fade into You” is tacky and sad, ever since Paul Verhoeven staged a SPACE FIST-FIGHT to it in 1997’s Starship Troopers. You can’t top that, Alias music coordinator, with your pouty-yet-horsey faced heroine and her perfectly coiffed man-boy teenbeat Baldwinesque co-star. Just give it up.

random ten

  1. Stay With Me The Small Faces

    So, in the mornin’, please don’t say you love me
    ‘Cause you know I’ll only kick you out the door
    Yeah, I’ll pay your cab fare home, you can even use my best cologne,
    Just don’t be here in the mornin’ when I wake up.

  2. So Ghetto Jay-Z

    You’ll be wearing a black suit a long time
    I put your crew in hard bottoms
    The priest is like, “God’s got him
    He never did nuttin to nobody but them boys shot him”

    Read more »

headphones for everyone

J. Sanchez waxes rhapsodic about his new Grado SR-60 headphones, and I have to agree with him — I bought a set in the fall, and they’re just amazing.

And they’re stylish! (Picture of me wearing said headphones available upon demand)

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