Wednesday, August 09, 2006

iPod, Music, and Podcasts

Take the iPod:

This little-one obviously likes it

iPods are incredibly popular devices. The dominate the market so much that you might hear monopoly applied to it. It's become the Kleenex, or the Xerox of digital media players. It doesn't matter that there are other manufacturers out there; everything's an iPod to the public. iPods are everywhere, so much so that most acccesories are manufactured only for the iPod. Many of the accessories will work with other players, but some won't.

The iPod is nice. The top model will hold more songs than most people will listen to in their lifetime. It will hold more audiobooks than you'll see on the shelves at any bookstore. The new ones will display pictures and play videos.

The only thing I don't like about iPods is the control Apple holds over them. You pretty much have to use iTunes to load them. Apple likes to have everything in their acc format. You can't use wma (Windows Media Audio), wmv (Windows Media Video), or ogg (Ogg Vorbis) formats. In my opinion, ogg is a superior sound quality, but the iPod won't play it.

There are other options. A new one is the Clix:
This little bugger will play more types of files than an iPod. It was announced today, so I'd wait to see what problems arise. iRiver has other players, but this one looks promising.

Creative has the Zen, and they have lots of different kinds:
I hear good things about the Zen. I'm not sure if it supports ogg format.

If you use, or want, and iPod, you'll have to use iTunes on Windows or Mac with it. You can use gtkpod for it on any Linux distribution. I'm not sure how the others link up, but I understand the Zen hooks up with Linux easily.

I get no ad money for these links. If I had an affiliation with any of them, I would. Mostly, I wanted you to know there are options for portable music.

I don't listen to music that much. Rarely in fact. I listen to audiobooks and podcasts.

What is a podcast?
A good explaination is on the page:

"Think of a podcast as a radio show. Each show consists of a series of individual episodes that you can listen to how you want — on your PC, using your MP3 player, or with just a web browser.

If you've never listened to podcasts, you're in for a treat. Sports, comedy, movies, food, politics, music, books, speeches, walking tours, whatever — you name the topic and you'll find podcasts about it. Not only do you have incredible choice, you can listen whenever and wherever you want.

You can listen to these episodes one at a time (say using your web browser) or you can 'subscribe' to the entire podcast series using software on your PC. When you subscribe to a podcast, all new shows will be automatically downloaded to your computer as they are published. And if you have an MP3 player, the next time you sync your device, your podcasts will be downloaded for listening on the go.

When you enter the world of podcasting, you're stepping into a realm where anyone and everyone can have a voice and broadcast their opinions and imagination to the world. Have fun exploring, and perhaps you too may feel the urge to become a podcaster. If you do, it's easy."

Apple's Garageband program comes with support for creating podcasts. I use's Juice to download all my podcasts. Most of them are tech based. You can use the Yahoo site too.

Okay, enough iPod stuff.

I register for classes yesterday. I'm taking A+ Software and Local Area Networks. Last semester, my class was only one day a week. I had to do something on the class website almost everyday, but we only did lab one day a week. This semester, I'll be in class four days a week. It'll be like real school. Almost.

No comments: